The iPad 2: Is This the End of PSP and DS?

In: Articles by Miguel "DaddyGamer" Gonzaga

6 Mar 2011

I’ve been holding back in writing this article for almost a year now.

As an old-school gamer, I’m clinging to the past and couldn’t let go of the tangible greatness of dedicated gaming devices such as the Sony PSP and Nintendo DS. But reading about the specs, software, and applications of tablets like the iPad2, Xoom, Galaxy and Playbook, I have to confess that I believe the days of the PSP and DS are numbered.

This is not because of the technology they offer. It’s the fact that I can get the gaming goodies and multiplayer functionalities without forking out $20 to $40 for a new game.

Let’s face it. Tablets are no longer a fad as they were in the early 1990s and 2000s. Software development is on the rise, chips and hardware are less expensive, and the consumer acceptance is high.

As a parent, I’d rather spend $500 on a tablet that my kids can use for homework, research, and play free games than spending the same amount on a PSP2 that, for the most part, can do one or two things. I don’t need to do a mass scientific study to see that tablets are having an impact on untapped markets. I often watch my 66-year-old mother play games with my 60-year-old uncle, 40-year-old brother, my cousins, and their kids using their iPhones, iTouches, and iPads. They all live in different parts of the state.

Fun and entertainment are what gaming is all about and these tablets are delivering the experience. The technology is transparent. The interface is amazingly intuitive. The price is affordable.

Thanks to game engines from companies such as Epic Games and id Software, new iPhone and iPad games look amazing and this is just the beginning. I can only imagine how game developer like John Carmack will exploit new tablet technologies. All you have to do is look and play Rage HD or Infinity Blade on the iPhone and iPad to see what I’m talking about.

Tablets seem to also hit the pause and refresh button in the gaming market. What does it mean when a $6 2D game with birds, sticks, and blocks get more interest and hype that a massive 3D online multiplayer videogame with superheroes that costs $60 plus monthly fees?

I have a feeling that current game publishers are realizing that they don’t have to spend millions in developing a game to make money on these new “gaming devices.” Let’s not kid ourselves — this is the secondary function of most tablets and other iDevices.

The bottomline is the bottomline. Why spend money on separate devices for fun, productivity, and practically when you can get them all in one? Am I off base here? What’s your perspective on the future of portable gaming?

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13 Responses to The iPad 2: Is This the End of PSP and DS?

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TechWorld

March 6th, 2011 at 1:30 pm

Gamers will always be drawn towars gaming systems. Gamers don’t like virtual buttons and control sticks on a touch screen. They want tangible controls and great graphics. The 3DS and NGP are the devices those type of people are going to go for. And as a parent I would first buy a $250.00 system that plays games, movies, music, apps, goes online and more then a $500.00 system. The iPad and other tablets are priced way too high for what they are which is a giant phone without the phone or texting. With everybody probably owning either a smartphone or at least having a laptop today who really needs a tablet? It doesn’t do as much as a computer and portable systems do the same things for the most part and with better games. And right now yes, an iPod Touch is cheap and works great for the same kinds of things. But gaming systems are getting more advanced and it’s starting to fall back. The 3DS and NGP have far better graphics than the iPod Touch and they are getting extremely more powerful. Yes they will be more expensive but they are alot more powerful things. They all do the same thing if you think about it. They all have online stores to buy games and apps. You can play games, music, movies and go online with them. And games systems give you better quality mostly. And if you think that games on them are too expensive then look at DSiWare which is ten dollars at max. They are no different then buying games and apps from the iPads app store except they have alot less games which is a good thing in it’s own way. The iPad and iPod App Store is full of crap that nobody needs and I’ll admit that I have twelve pages of apps on my iPhone but if I deleted all of the crap then I would be left with probably four or five pages. And alot of the games are the same games with a different company or a generic version or something stupid. Portable games systems will always have their place alongside tablets and smartphones. Different people want different things and gamers want a gaming machine, not a tablet, not a smartphone (even though a smartphone is probably something a gamer would own).

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Mr.d

March 6th, 2011 at 1:54 pm

But it’s apple o_o I must submit

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Sean

March 6th, 2011 at 2:00 pm

Yes, $250-350 may be less than $500, but admit it, one other thing gamers know is that the accessories and games are priced to where you’re going to be spending $500 anyway. And no one person is qualified to be an arbiter as to how much is “too much” to spend on anything, any more than any one person can accurately establish a clear-cut standard for a so-called “living wage.”

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Leah

March 6th, 2011 at 2:26 pm

I don’t think Nintendo handhelds are going anywhere. Sony, though? Hmmm…

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Mr.D

March 6th, 2011 at 2:44 pm

@Sean but that logic also applies for the $500 dollar you will spend on accessories for that device also so in turn you spending upwards of 750 to 1000. An let’s make no exception the iPad is tablet it’s formost function isn’t games were as Nintendo and Psp mostly are gaming devices (well mostly Nintendo)

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gamergodz

March 6th, 2011 at 7:44 pm

maybe the end of ds (third party games) but not psp. most ds and iphone games target casual gamers.

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daddygamer

March 6th, 2011 at 9:19 pm

Awesome feedback, guys. TechWorld, your comment is longer than my article I think. hehehhe I can’t argue with quality. Sony and Nintendo are vets on this aspect of the game. I guess I’m pulling from the “Daddy” part of my alias here. My kids do have both portables. They love their DS lite. But guess what? The games they keep going back to are fun games that don’t really require the NGP and 3DS power. I think these type of games can easily be ported to a tablet.

Graphics-wise? Infinity Blade was an eye-opener for me. Like most hardcore gamers, I laughed at the thought of having the iPad deliver this quality. Epic proved me wrong. Was it deep? No. Is there a lot of potential? You better believe it.

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Chris

March 6th, 2011 at 10:18 pm

LOL I totally disagree hand-helds from Sony and Nintendo not going anywhere!!! Why your kids meant to be doing work they will be playing games lol.. Besides that’s what computers are for..

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daddygamer

March 7th, 2011 at 12:08 am

Chris, you have a point. hehhehe

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Tom

March 7th, 2011 at 2:04 pm

First and foremost a gaming console is all about games (software), which we all know ipad/ipod is almost completely devoid of, and what is there can not hold a candle to what the DS/PSP currently offer let alone what NGP and 3DS will be putting out. The main draw of these devices for games is the extremely cheap price of said games, but there is no quality control and often you don’t get what you pay for (check out Angry Curds the Angry Birds rip off for starters).

You also fail to realize that gamers want buttons and sticks for their games not touch areas that emulate them (the lack of precision is key here). not to mention the old school hold out like my self who don’t support digital distribution only platforms like iOS and OnLive.

The last think I am going to point out is the cost of the 3DS and NGP are well below the $500-600 range (the NGP will not launch for more then 299.99 bet on it) and when you consider how much better the games are going to be it really seems like a no brainer, unless your an apple fanboy that is…

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daddygamer

March 7th, 2011 at 2:25 pm

Tom,
Nope. Not an Apple fan boy here. As I’ve mentioned, I’m also an old school gamer. But with that said, I’m also about finding that new experience whether it comes in the form of a new story or interface. I sure hope you are right about the NGP for under $300 though. Both the NGP and 3DS need all the edge they can get to capture a bigger piece of the portable gaming market that, in my opinion, is shrinking.

I’m with you on digital distribution/DLC when it comes to having something tangible. BUT if the DLC reduces the price to, let’s say, 60%, that’s going to be tough to ignore in this gaming economy. Thanks for the feedback.

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Darn Ragnar

March 8th, 2011 at 2:01 am

Hmmmm…I think the 3 products are currently aiming at different sections of the market. The iOS is perfect for quick bite sized games, the DS has a combination of kid friendly and key franchises and the PSP is more for the hardcore (Yes…That term) gamer. If the iPad 3 comes with a mini joystick and 2-4 buttons it will overcome its biggest limitation (Controls) and be a true games device. If the next PSP embraces 99c minis and has better internet and video playback functions then it could eat into the iOS market. Will wait and see but for now they can all survive…for now.

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daddygamer

March 8th, 2011 at 10:31 am

Just adding fire to the flame…

Q&A: Epic co-founder on iPad 2′s gaming potential
http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/technologybrierdudleysblog/2014424945_qa_epic_co-founder_on_ipad_2s.html

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