The PlayStation 5 is almost with us, just as Sony is taking steps to switch off the life support machine for the Vita. SIE are planning for the future with their new wonder platform and are leaving their legacy systems behind once more. As for myself, I’ve decided to make a bold decision as a PlayStation gamer…
I’ve been a PlayStation fan since the brand first launched. I was a day one adopter in the UK. And while I don’t have my original PS1 anymore (I had to replace it when the CD drive failed), I still have my original purchase receipt. While they weren’t day one purchases, I followed suit with the PS2, PS3 and PSP adding them to the collection.
Then, as you’d expect reading this, I went back to day one purchases with the PS Vita and PSTV. But that was it when it came to modern platforms. I wasn’t interested in Microsoft systems (I had an original Xbox but couldn’t get on with the controller) and our Nintendo collections stopped after the Wii and 3DS. I just wasn’t interested as I explained here.
With over 1,200 games sitting in my Vita’s collection I didn’t miss out on not having a new system. I had access to plenty of native Vita games, almost the entire EU PlayStation Mobile range before they were removed from sale as well as hundreds of legacy games from the PSP, PSOne and Minis ranges. I was – and still am – a happy Vita gamer.
But now, as Sony is winding down support for the Vita across the board.and making it harder to buy new games, it left me with something of a dilemma. Sooner or later I was going to end up with a finite games library for the Vita and digital sales would stop altogether. Should I relegate the Vita to the cupboard or should I consider adding a modern system to the collection?
Enter The PS4?
My own circumstances at home had changed dramatically over the last 12 months. Since we moved to South Wales we had a relatively slow internet connection. Certainly nothing fast enough to cope with the huge game downloads and patches that the current gen demanded. All changed when we upgraded to fibre last year. It not only revitalised our home usage but dramatically improved our YouTube channel as well.
But that also removed a huge concern for next gen systems for me as well. Combining that and the support for external hard drives suddenly made them a serious option. Even more so for the PS4 considering the fact that I’d already amassed a collection of around 400 games through Cross Buy and PlayStation Plus since the console’s launch.
Yes, you read it correctly. I mentioned the PlayStation 4. Even though the PS5 is about to be released, my first thoughts turned to the PS4 instead. That may sound bizarre, but there was method to the madness. As I already said, I’ve got a huge PS4 games collection already. The Cross Buy titles don’t really bother me as most will be played on the Vita as it’s still my system of choice. But there are still a huge number of native PS4 games I’ve amassed courtesy of PS+ and truthfully I don’t think I’d find myself wanting many new games for one.
With the system being out for several years, all of the kinks have been ironed out as well thanks to all the updates so it’s a relatively stable platform. The final advantage is purely a financial one. Or so I hoped. With the release of the PS5 one would anticipate the price of the older systems to drop quite rapidly making the PS4 an affordable alternative. At the same time, the price of PS5 games and it’s small hard drive size was incredibly off-putting.
Now here came a surprise. Despite the launch of the PS5 being a month away, the PS4 simply wasn’t dropping in price. Next gen games are notorious for needing huge amounts of hard disk space so it was pointless looking for a 500Gb model. Frustratingly that’s all I could find in stores. Neither the 1Tb or my preferred choice of the PS4 Pro were anywhere to be seen. On the rare occasions that I could find them, the prices were almost the same as the PlayStation 5!
Well, it’s obvious that I wasn’t going to be able to get a PS5 on day one. I wasn’t in a rush but I stopped and asked myself if it was a viable option for me. Backwards compatibility with the PS4 gives me a huge day one collection and storage wouldn’t be a factor thanks to its support for external hard drives for PS4 games. While PS4 controllers are needed for some games, I’ve already got a DualShock 4 that I use for my PSTV thanks to its PS Vita compatability so there’s no expense there. All I’d really need is a harddrive and one or two games. Probably the same I’d spend on a PS4!
We’ll, if you haven’t already figured it out by now I’ll be joining the modern gaming era soon. Strangely I’m not as excited as most over getting a PS5 but I think it’s the right decision. I’ve been a huge fan of the games that Ratalaika have brought to the Vita in recent years and it’s clear that these days are numbered. Whether Cross Buy extends to the PS4/PS5 I don’t know but at least I can continue to support one of my favourite indie developers.
It will finally give me a chance to catch up on all the tables I’ve missed on Zen Pinball and The Pinball Arcade. A couple of the titles that almost made me consider a PS4 in the first place! Maybe I might even discover a couple of other titles I’ll want to play!
So keep an eye on our YouTube channel and websites next year as we’ll be covering a lot more in the future!