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PSP Go doesn’t Go far enough October 6, 2009

Posted by mbdavenport in Uncategorized.
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Sony's PSP Go

Sony's PSP Go

Sony’s new PSP Go was launched last week to a fanfare of umms and errs. Whilst reviewers have generally found the PSP Go to be a satisfactory evolution of the PSP line many have questioned Sony’s plan in bringing this device to market.

Much has already been said about the price. In the UK it’s RRP is £224.99 – some £90 more expensive that its predecessor despite offering almost nothing extra in terms of features or tricks. Whilst the new Go is rocking a 16GB flash drive it also features a smaller screen, has no upgraded internals, has lost its user-replaceable battery and gained a proprietary Sony connection (surprise!) which means all your previous accessories will now be totally useless unless you fork out extra for an additional and unsightly adaptor. Not only that but there’s now no UMD drive either, so your existing catalogue of PSP games are also totally useless. Don’t worry, you can purchase them again online for their recommended retail price. Yay!

But who’s going to buy it? Well, nobody that already owns a PSP. Why pay over the odds for a machine that won’t accept you’re old accessories or your existing library of PSP titles and which won’t do anything that your current PSP couldn’t already? That’s right, you shouldn’t. And people won’t.

Sony has essentially created a new, non-backwards compatible piece of hardware which ordinarily would be fine. Ordinarily new, non-backwards compatible pieces of hardware are normally released when there’s a shift to the next system. People wouldn’t mind if their old games didn’t work and if their accessories were junk had Sony released the PSP2 and that’s exactly what they should have done. They could have gone right ahead and released their online catalogue of original PSP games and made them available to download to both PSP and PSP2 users. All PSP2 games would then only ever be released for download and Sony could merrily charge as much as they wanted for all of time. That, ladies and gentlemen, is how you do a transition.

Instead they release the PSP Go and have the balls to charge 66% more for the device in the mistaken belief that the Go is something to which gamers will ‘aspire’. Gamers don’t aspire to consoles. They buy consoles because they want to play fun, entertaining games that they will enjoy. I’ll admit that the PSP Go makes the DS looks like an ugly brick but it’ll be Nintendo laughing by the time accounts are submitted for the financial year 09/10.

The PSP Go is available now.

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