On the eve of the PS Vita’s Japanese launch, Sony has pulled a 180 on its previous statement concerning the handheld’s ability to juggle multiple PlayStation Network accounts. The company has now clarified that only one online account can be tied to the device via memory card.
Little brothers who planned to buy a memory card, make their own PSN profile and build a personal trophy collection on their big brothers’ systems are out of luck. Sorry, little brothers.
“[The] PSN account is tied to the hardware and the memory card, not just the card, which means that if a second person is using your Vita, it’s not just a case of switching out memory cards, it’s clearing out all of your saved data on the Vita itself when you do the factory reset,” said an unnamed Sony rep. “In other words, PlayStation Vita is intended to be played by only one user.”
Originally, Sony Associate Brand Marketing Manager Crystal MacKenzie told the site a single Vita would be able to read different memory cards with different PSN accounts. Following the correction, MacKenzie remained spot-on about one detail: a factory reset of the device will free it up for other PSN accounts.
The Vita, which launches in Japan this Saturday and in the U.S. and Europe on February 22, faces other hurdles besides aggravating prospective buyers. Proprietary Vita memory cards, which are basically required for customers who intend to take advantage of the system’s multimedia features, start at $30 and top $100.
Bloomberg noted a considerable $249/$299 price tag, along with competition from both Nintendo’s cheaper 3DS handheld and smartphones, won’t do Sony’s latest portable system any favors at retail.
Nintendo was forced to chop its glasses-less 3D portable’s price tag by $80 months after it launched due to lackluster sales. Some have posited that Sony has already priced itself out of competing in an increasingly diverse handheld gaming market.
Sony Computer Entertainment President Andrew House claims the device has already sold out its initial Japanese allocation. But whether the Vita can continue to post sky-high numbers after both Sony faithful and early adopters snatch one up in the opening days is the big question. (via Wired)