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PS Vita Game Saves Get Even More Confusing

Posted on October 25, 2011 AT 02:59pm

THE BUZZ: There seems to be an unwritten rule about new gaming hardware: No matter how many things have been done right in the system’s creation, inevitably something has to go wrong.

When the PS Vita was first announced, one of the details mentioned was that games would come with built-in storage space for data such as game saves and DLC. The idea was that you could keep your game, your save files, and downloaded content all in one place together—an idea that sounded quite swell.

Recently, however, Sony clarified a few details on the Vita, one of them being that while some games would indeed offer that built-in storage space, other games won’t. For those games, you’d need to have a memory card on which to put save data. It’s an unfortunately complication to the situation many of us had expected from the start, especially as the proprietary memory cards Sony will be using for the Vita are looking to be quite expensive at this point.

Now, the situation is looking even more complicated. Kotaku Japan had the chance to ask Sony Computer Entertainment some Vita-related questions, and from that conversation comes this further clarification.

If a PS Vita game saves its save data directly to the cartridge, then it will not allow you to instead save that data to a memory card. So—for example—in case you were hoping to just save all of your data in one place (a memory card) to keep it all together, that won’t be possible. Meanwhile, if a game instead needs a memory card to save data to, you must then have a memory card in the machine when starting the game—otherwise, it won’t boot. (On most game consoles and handhelds, you can still play a game even if you have no way to save your data—not the case on the Vita.)

EGM’s TAKE: This is a huge, confusing mess. Looking at the situation as a customer, I can’t even begin to understand what the thinking behind all of this is. If some games are going to require saving data to a memory card, then let all games have the ability to save there.

What happens when you have a Vita title that doesn’t allow saving data to a memory card, but then consumers purchase the digital download version of the game? At that point, they’re going to have to have the ability to save to a memory card no matter what, so why not just give that option to everybody?

I really hope that Sony realizes how confusing this is going to be for Vita owners, and that this situation is fixed very quickly via a firmware update.

Source: Kotaku Japan

Eric L. Patterson, Executive Editor
Eric L. Patterson got started via self-publishing game-related fanzines in junior high, and now has one goal in life: making sure EGM has as much coverage of niche Japanese games as can realistically be crammed in. Eric’s also active in the gaming community on a personal level, being an outspoken voice on topics such as equality in gaming and consumer rights. Stalk Eric on Twitter: @Eric_EGM. Meet the rest of the crew.

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