Sony has announced two separate new features that will address the more casual, portable gaming market now dominated by smartphones. As they describe it, this will be a “hardware-neutral game framework.”
PSOne games and titles made specifically for the PlayStation mobile store will be available through a PS Store application on Android devices. This service is due out by the end of 2011 – the calendar year, not the fiscal year.
Mobile gamers know the troubles to be had with touch screen based control sticks. It looks like these emulated games will be packed with these types of interfaces, surely something to cause some amount of frustration among gamers. This raises the question: exactly how much do you want to play Syphon Filter on your phone?
This seems like an interesting move for Sony, especially since they’ve announced a true sequel to the PSP as well. It’s as if they are trying to chip away at the mobile market and application stores by coming up with an alternative. It would be foolish on their part to say that their store will take over Android gaming, but it will certainly provide a new place to shop.
But will developers be willing to step up and take part? Epic Games recently spoke out about the sheer amount of stores available for the Android devices. They like things neat, easy, compact, straightforward… couldn’t adding a whole new store be a bit of a detriment to developers like them?
Plain and simple? Sony’s looking to plug the leak caused by smartphones where the gaming world is concerned. Is this enough to do the trick? Probably not. The PlayStation Store for Android, while very cool, will likely serve as a small sliver of the gaming potential for the device.
The games sold without the PlayStation Store for Android will be cross platform and a part of the PlayStation Suite, according to Sony. They will be downloadable for both units.