news\ Jan 9, 2012 at 10:59 am

Sony planning 'biggest campaign ever' for PlayStation Vita

Man playing PS Vita

With the PlayStation Vita a little more than a month away from its North American and European release, Sony is gearing up for what they consider to be the "biggest campaign" they've ever executed.  Sony recently admitted that a lot rests on the success of the PlayStation Vita, so it's no surprise that they are going big with their marketing of the handheld.

When speaking to MCV, UK marketing manager Mark Bowles indicated Sony will be doing everything within its power to market the Vita.

“Vita delivers an  uncompromised gaming experience on a portable device, for the first time,” Bowles told MCV. “With a long list of impressive features, we’re confident consumers will be incredibly excited by the latest addition to the PlayStation family.”

"The PS Vita launch will be supported by the biggest campaign we’ve ever executed, and this level of activity will continue throughout 2012, reflecting our confidence in, and commitment to the platform long term," he added.

“Our campaign will target gamers primarily, but also the new generation of tech enthusiasts and entertainment consumers who are used to playing games on their smartphones or tablets. What sets Vita apart is its ability to deliver PS3 quality gaming, in addition to the range of globally recognised triple-A software titles, which simply isn’t possible or aren’t available on any other existing portable."

Bowles confirmed that the PS Vita launch will be supported by a "heavyweight TV, press, outdoor and retail presence."

With that being said, Bowles did admit that the best way to understand the Vita is with a hands on experience - and this is where Sony is taking its marketing for the Vita in a different direction.  With the PS Vita launching on February 22nd in the UK, Sony has planned a PlayStation Vita tour, providing hands-on previews for UK residents.

PlayStation Access will traveling across the UK, setting up "Vita Rooms" equipped with PS Vita handhelds and some of the greatest games available for the device.

"One thing we learnt early on is that the best way to understand PS Vita, is to get hands-on experience with it," Bowles admitted. "This is why we’re investing heavily in an experiential tour.”

Bowles added: “The key to any successful console launch is software, and we believe the launch line-up for the PS Vita is the strongest of any gaming platform. Consumers will quite literally be spoilt for choice in terms of the depth and breadth of gaming experiences on offer.”

The United States launch line-up was recently leaked by GameStop and made public by Destructoid, revealing a list of strong launch titles that includes Uncharted: Golden Abyss and Gravity Rush.

Slumping sales in Japan have led to speculation that Sony would cancel the U.S. launch of the 3G Vita model, but Sony put a quick end to those rumors.  Despite the lower-than-expected sales, some analysts continue to predict the Vita will outsell the hot competitor, the Nintendo 3DS. Others reason that the Vita is aimed more at the Western market of gamers, and could be the reason for lower sales in Japan.

Whatever Sony's reasoning behind the "largest marketing campaign ever", one thing is clear: the PlayStation Vita needs to sell - gand it needs to sell well.

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