Finally Bought a Vita: Thoughts

With the price drop last week and some good deals at local stores, I decide to finally pull the trigger. Been wanting one for a long time and have already committed to a PS4, so it was going to happen eventually anyway. Anyways, the deals that sealed it were the $20 off both the 3G and WiFi models at Fred Meyer ($179.99) and the 8GB memory cards were only $20 at Walmart, versus $30-35 everywhere else. I decided that since both models were the same, I'd just get the 3G model just in case I ever feel like paying for the data. Fred Meyer had just gotten The Walking Dead bundle in, but their sale didn't cover that model and I already own the PC version anyway. Hilariously, I didn't read the actual Vita box first, so I ended up with two memory cards. I bought the 8GB card from Walmart first, not knowing the 3G model comes with one. Oops. Well, I'll just use one for games and one for media.

So far, I'm really liking it, but there are definitely some issues. In no particular order:

-I both love and hate the system interface. There's a lot of neat visual flourishes (tearing games/apps off the screen like wallpaper to close them, the ways the icons jiggle like jello when you make gesture), but there are some major shortcomings. Not being able to remove icons from the Live Area without uninstalling it is my biggest peeve. Really needs a "Hide" feature. The second is having to double tap to start something. Tapping the icon and then tapping Start. It might not seem like much, but the time wasted adds up in the long run I would imagine.

-Uncharted: Golden Abyss. I agree with a lot of the reviews. Graphically, story wise and audio wise the game is stunning for a handheld title, but some of the touch stuff is terrible. Looking at stuff with the back trackpad is annoying, but I love doing the charcoal rubbings. I'm 50/50 on the melee gestures, I think they both work and don't work, but I'm not sure I can place my finger on why I have this particular opinion just quite yet.

-Gravity Rush. Not far enough into it to give any definitive opinions, but so far it's gorgeous and definitely seems like the kind of thing I bought the system for.

-This thing collects fingerprints like nobody's business. You just have to look at it and a new one appears.

-Content management is a pain in the ass and the WiFi seems slow. I think it's because the Vita can't write to the memory cards fast enough to utilize the full speed of my Internet connection, which kind of...well, it sucks. So I've just been downloading to my PS3 and copying stuff over.

-I think I prefer playing PS1 games on the Vita because the screen makes them look pretty good, but prefer playing them on PS3 for the DualShock 3.

-I'm going to lose a memory card, I just know it. These things are just that size.

-Welcome Park is awesome and I hope they use this approach with the PS4. It's a really fun way to learn the abilities of the system. I had a blast with it.

-Apps. Email app is horrible. Good thing I already have a Galaxy S II to check my Gmail with because I would never use the Vita app. Netflix app is a mixed bag. The interface performs terribly, but picture quality is impressive. This will probably be my default mobile Netflix device since Netflix doesn't work with CM10.2 on my S II without hacks and I don't feel like futzing with those. I have Skype and YouTube installed, but haven't run them yet. My sister is excited that I finally have something I can use to Skype with, but eh.

-It's bigger than I thought it would be and the buttons are smaller than I thought they would be. The Start/Select buttons are almost too small in my opinion. I don't know, maybe I just haven't figured out the right way to hold it in my hands yet. So far though, it's been kind of uncomfortable. Hopefully, it will get better with time as I adapt. Part of me thinks this was a design choice because Sony was hoping companies would focus on touch controls.

-Really looking forward to trying out some other games. Might pick up Metal Gear Solid 3 and the Jak games. Looking for to the new Ys and Final Fantasy X/X-2. I'm actually pretty hopeful that I get some use of this thing.

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