Pachter’s hating on handhelds

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Video game industry analyst du jour Michael Pachter doesn’t think very much of the latest crop of handhelds – and believes neither has what it takes to be successful right now.

“The larger [3DS] format is not all that compelling for the consumer,” he said to VG247 of Nintendo’s soon to be released upsized 3DS  “and although I think the XL will help sales, I don’t think that the impact will revive weak sales of handhelds overall.”

He doesn’t think Sony’s Vita is going to make a compelling case for dedicated handhelds either.

“Vita’s too expensive for most, priced pretty much the same as the PS3 everywhere. While I think the Vita is a good value and a great device, when compared to the PS3 it’s pretty expensive. Also, there is not much of a library of Vita games, so sales will probably be slow until we see more content.”

Funnily enough, just before the Vita’s release, Pachter was pretty bullish about the device, predicting that it would outsell the 3DS – at least for the three months after release. He was dreadfully wrong about that – because Vita sales are still in the toilet.

"I think the launch lineup is better, and they are at the same price, so assume that Vita is ahead of 3DS for first 3 months," he said then.

To date, Nintendo’s moved over 19 million 3DS’ to date, while the Vita’s sold a little over two million units. Are slow handheld sales the result of the global decline in videogames – or have smartphones and tablets just made too much of impact on the mobile gaming experience?

Last Updated: July 26, 2012

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