A New PlayStation Portable Cloud Gaming Hybrid? Maybe!


Sony PlayStation – the ubiquitous reminder of our collective childhood memories. Iconoclastic in itself, yet also self-indulgent enough to shrug off its own failures, Sony PlayStation evolved into Cher and Kate Bush’s love child – subjectively relevant.

And Sony might revive the PSP or something similar. Yes. I know. I’m just the messenger. Don’t shoot. Okay. We good? We good. Okay.

I Wanna Hold Your Hand

Handheld gaming is an ambiguous misnomer, especially with the advent of console-level mobile and cloud gaming. Sony tried to stay ahead of the technological epoch of the early naughts by releasing the PSP, which in retrospect amounted to nothing more than a sexier Nintendo DS. Was it revolutionary?

IGN wrote at the time, “The PSP has successfully brought console-quality graphics and gameplay to a portable system. Titles like ‘God of War: Chains of Olympus’ and ‘Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker’ showcase what the hardware is capable of, making the PSP a strong contender in the handheld market.”

While other outlets, like Techmedia, praised its multimedia capabilities:

“If you can stomach the proprietary formats and faffing about with removable media, the PSP’s a pleasing device as a video player. It looks and feels good, and sports an elegant menu system.”

That’s what my ex said when he left me with a broken TV and a couch that smelled like sadness. Just to be clear, I broke up with him because he drove a Hummer and believed the earth was flat. So that happened.

Vita: Literally Life in Latin

In short, the PSP died in a closet filled with misery toys and a Dreamcast. A few stragglers still held on to the death-rattling PSP, but the end was nigh and everyone knew it.

Yet, Sony wasn’t done with handhelds. Enter the PS Vita, a device that dared to dream bigger and bolder. TechRadar noted the Vita’s initial promise: “Thinner, lighter, but just as powerful as the 2012 PS Vita, the PS Vita Slim does a lot right. Sony has made some subtle changes, both internally and externally, but they’re mostly welcome improvements. The design tweaks make for a more portable, comfortable system.”

Despite its innovation, the Vita struggled against a market shifting towards smartphones and tablets. According to Laptop Mag, the Vita’s capabilities were notable: “Our playthrough of ‘Uncharted: Golden Abyss’ was a great example of the potential future of gaming. The game incorporated all the key components of the hardware (touchscreen, rear touchpad, motion controls and traditional controls) to create a seamless gaming experience that didn’t come off as gimmicky.”

But even with such features, the Vita couldn’t escape the shadow of the original PSP’s decline. Sony’s handhelds faded into the background as the gaming landscape evolved.

History Repeats Itself, or So They Say

Now, rumors are swirling once more about a potential revival. Could Sony be planning to bring back a handheld device, possibly linked to the PS4 ecosystem? The idea alone is enough to stir nostalgia and anticipation among fans. As Gamerant reports, “Sony might be developing a new handheld device, which could play PS4 games on the go.” Cloud gaming included!

Ultimately, Sony’s handheld saga is more than just a narrative of technological advances and market shifts. It’s a chronicle of ambition, of lessons learned from both triumphs and failures. If Sony dares to tread the handheld path once more, it will do so with a rich legacy behind it—one that whispers of past glories and future possibilities. Like a resurrected Cher, still strutting on stage, defying time, Sony’s potential new handheld could be the nostalgic renaissance we didn’t know we needed, blending past innovations with future dreams.

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Renier Palland

Renier is a jack of all trades and a master of some. A published author and poet, Renier understands the art of weaving a narrative, or so the critics say. As a professional overreactor and occasional debater of existentialist philosophy, Renier thrives on games where choices actually matter, e.g. Life Is Strange, Mass Effect, and Heavy Rain. Renier often finds himself in a game of throes on GeForce NOW, sobbing like a Sicilian widow because life is definitely way too strange sometimes.

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