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PlayStation Vita  header logo


E3 2011: Carmack - PS Vita will feel 'pretty pokey' in a year or two's time

Smart to poke?

Product: PlayStation Vita | Manufacturer: Sony Computer Entertainment
PlayStation Vita PS Vita, thumbnail 1
Chatting with GameSpot at this year's E3, id Software's co-founder John Carmack revealed his scepticism of Sony's upcoming PlayStation Vita.

Although Carmack thinks the Vita is twice as powerful as current smartphones (due to some smart Sony tweaking), he also believes that it won't be able to keep up with smartphone advances.

Questioned whether he'd been hands-on with the Sony's Vita, Carmack responded, "No, but I think that Sony learned a lot from the PS3, and they've gone out of their way to make sure that the development is as easy as possible on there."

"I think that they've picked as eminently a suitable hardware spec as they could for that. They're going to have you program for it like a console, so it's going to seem twice as powerful as a smartphone with the exact same chips in there."

"But of course, by the time they actually ship, there may be smartphones or these tablets with twice as much power as what they're shipping with on there. And a year or two after that, it's going to look pretty pokey."

In Carmack's eyes, for Sony to have success, it should focus its efforts on quicker and cheaper games by "allowing people to more or less directly move over the console development engine to technologies on there."

Reviewer photo
Anthony Usher 13 June 2011
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Jun 2011
Post count:
Hai | 21:20 - 13 June 2011
Being behind in HW specs didn't slow Wii down, but Vita is currently a full generation ahead of any other mobile device including iPad2 in terms of HW specs ja raw performance. 4-core Cortex A9 with SGX543MP4 GPU outperforms all existing and currently announces devices.

Then there's the controls. Let's face it, touch screen gaming leaves a lot to be desired specially since developers seem to just try to mimic the joystick controls. Vita has both touch based and analog stick control, and as such provides the best platform for mobile gaming.

I love my iPad 2 but for gaming I'll take a dedicated super device with proper controls any day.

Phones are lacking so much on the overall gaming experience, and that won't change in the near future.
Apr 2011
Post count:
japonlindo | 17:28 - 13 June 2011
PSP was released on Dec 12, 2004. And its successor PSP Vita will be released by the end of 2011. So it took 7 years for original PSP to be replaced. I'm very exited about PSP Vita and will buy it on day one. But if Sony has to sell it for another 7 years, like John Carmack said, I can't imagine how far smartphones can get in 7 years and PSP Vita may look pokey soon.
Jun 2011
Post count:
Etharius | 16:16 - 13 June 2011
It isn't all about the specs, it's about the platform. Not everyone can afford to update to the latest specs, and unless we want a fragmented market like the PC market, we're going to have to stay within the life-cycle of any given product.

I like my iPhone, hell, I even have plenty of games on it, but most are distractions at best, and I'll sell my Granny for physical controls and some meaty games over a 59p app and a touchscreen. Sure, my phone can out-perform my PSP, but I refer to my Sony whenever I want to get some serious game time in.