Welcome Back You VitaBoys and Gals. In the world of mobile gaming, there are three systems that are battling it out to own the market. The New Nintendo 3DS XL, PS Vita 2000, and Nvidia Shield. These three systems currently own the market, and are each amazing in their own right, and with their own audiences. The question remaining is which system is the best or at least the best for you. It’s time for what should have been done a long time ago, it’s time to put these three mobile gaming powerhouses head to head and see which one rules the market and our hearts. Let’s start by evaluating the system itself.
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PS Vita- Both the Vita 1000, and 2000 are some of the sleekest designed consoles to ever be placed in gamers hands. With a nice feel that fits right in your hand, and grips on the back to prevent slipping the system just feels great, and certainly isn’t a complaint at all. The system also boasts all kinds of great assets that blow its PSP predecessor out of the water. With two analog sticks, a d-pad, a front and rear touch screen, two cameras, Gyroscope, and so much more; this system has been packed to the brim with enough outer features to make any handheld gamers’ mouth water. Whether all the features are used well enough is a conversation for another day. Currently however we just take the time to notice that the systems build is as good as any portable gaming system to ever launch on the market. The downside to the systems build is that it doesn’t feature an l2 or r2 button, other than this, fans seem to be perfectly happy with the build of both PS Vita systems.
New Nintendo 3DS XL- The New Nintendo 3ds Xl does not disappoint fans who swapped over from the 3DS to the oddly but accurately named New 3DS. The system is sleek and familiar to fans. For newcomers however, the system can be a bit boxy, but nothing a little time and experience won’t fix. The system boasts the original analog stick and DPad of course, but with the new changes to the build come along some other great new features as well. The New 3ds features include a new c-stick to control gameplay camera angles, and helps the system to get onto the same page as the vita and shield by adding what simply stated is a second analog stick. The system also now boasts the new ZL and ZR buttons, which the PS Vita desperately lacks. Finally the system now allows for Amiibo support, has 3D functionality and allows for face tracking. With the new added features to the system. The new 3ds opens up a world of possibilities for developers and gamers alike. The only downside to the 3ds, well it wouldn’t have hurt to just add another analog stick rather than the c-stick. Other than this small issue Nintendo seems to be right on the mark with the new additions to the system.
NVidia Shield- Unfortunately the Nvidia Shield is the least ergonomic of the three systems. If the Shield owners aren’t into console gaming then the system will likely feel odd and uncomfortable. It feels less like a dedicated mobile gaming device and more like a screen placed atop an Xbox controller. However when you put the slightly uncomfortable feel aside, the Shield is no doubt one of the most well equipped gaming systems ever. The system runs on Android KitKat and features a 5 inch display that flips open to reveal the systems dual analog sticks, DPad, and action buttons. The system is basically a cross between a mobile gaming handheld and a tablet, and the look and feel of the system certainly reflects that. Finally the system is able to boast a 1280x720 pixel display that allows the games to all look extremely crisp and sharp. The downsides to the build of the Shield Portable are obvious. The system has no feel of a dedicated mobile gaming device, and just lacks that oomph in development. However, nobody can discount the true power of the system and how loved it is in the market.
PS Vita- Despite popular belief, and whatever the internet likes to continually spout off; The PS Vita truly does have games. The system plays host to some of the greatest indies to ever hit the market, and despite the fact that they do appear on other systems as well, there is nowhere that plays them better than the PS Vita. Playing titles like Minecraft, Terraria, Spelunky, and other huge Indies have never been as fun as when playing them with the power and features of the PS Vita. Beyond the Indies that can only wet so many appetites, comes the PS Vita’s massive AAA collection. The PS Vita allows hardcore gamers the chance to take massive titles like Disney Infinity, Borderlands 2, Killzone, and Final Fantasy on the go with them. There is no doubt that the PS Vita has enough titles to keep fans happy for a long time. The only problem is that many of these titles came out early in the PS Vita’s life cycle. Since the system launched, new additions to the library have grown further and further apart. Fans have been left wondering if they will ever see another AAA title on their PS Vita, and Sony has left them with so many unanswered questions. Thus it doesn’t matter how many titles the system currently boasts, the future of titles is unclear and this is a massive problem for the system. New adopters can rest easy knowing they have a backlog as big as any. However current owners have experienced continuous heartache and disappointment at the hands of the Vita’s dim future with regards to huge titles.
3DS- There is no doubt at all that the 3DS is absolutely the most stocked system with regards to worthwhile titles. With huge titles like Pokemon X, Luigi’s Mansion, Legend of Zelda, and Super Smash Brothers; titles are flying off the shelves. No system is able to boast about the multitude of titles in their arsenal quite like the 3DS. The system is packed to the brim with titles. Just take a look inside a GameStop one day; you will notice that the walls are lined with compatible titles. Only a few titles currently use the new C-Stick, and no titles use the ZL or ZR buttons; however the new features just show that many more titles will be coming soon. Furthermore the system is currently all Nintendo really has that is currently successful. Keeping this in mind, we can expect the 3DS to continue to be supported for long to come. The only downside to the library of titles the 3DS has is that some titles may not appeal to the hardcore gamer. That’s not saying the system doesn’t have a few titles that play hard, but let’s face it; the system is primarily made for children. Thus the titles are primarily focused on children.
Nvidia Shield- The Shield Portable doesn’t follow the norm when bringing games to your hands. You cannot go to the store and pick up the titles, and big name developers won’t go out of their way to create content on the system. Regardless, neither of these facts mean anything. The Shield Portable hands down has a powerhouse of a library, especially in recent years. The system brings games to you in one of three awesome ways. The first method is by using the store made for the system, called the Tegrazone Market. The market is home to some great titles such as Game of Thrones by TellTale, Medal Gear Rising, and Oddworld Strangers Wrath. When not purchasing titles from the TegraZone Market, gamers can make their way on over to the Google Play store and pick one of thousands of compatible titles for cheap. With the two markets combined the system has enough titles to keep any gamer going for an extremely long time.
PS Vita- The PS Vita has begun to start defining itself as one of the most amped up gaming system when it comes to features. In recent months Sony has begun to push the features of the PS Vita alongside the PS4. At launch the system featured some great assets like Gyroscope, AR Gaming, and a social interactive community with apps like Friends and Party. Recently with the launch of the PS4, the PS Vita has been upgraded tremendously. The biggest feature added is now the ability to play PS4 titles remotely onto your PS Vita system. Another large feature added was PS Now, the online streaming service of game. PS Vita owners are now able to stream great PS3, PS4 and even some PS2 titles straight onto their system with a monthly subscription. These features are unheard of on the gaming market, and truly set the PS Vita apart. However the PS Vita is lacking some key features that keep it from being a standout device. The primary feature lacking from the system is the ability to not use proprietary memory cards. The PS Vita system forces user to buy overly priced Sony memory cards that at the end of the day don’t even offer enough storage to allow gamers to keep titles on their systems. Most users are forced to carry multiple memory cards and swap them as needed, this process is absolutely unnecessary. This is the main issue regarding the Vita, and why many gamers refuse to adopt the system.
New 3DS XL- The New 3DS has added so many great new features that even gamers who just picked up a 3DS should go pick up the new console. The system allows gamers to interact with their system in ways never before seen. Firstly, the new Amiibo support allows gamers to take their beloved Amiibos and put them right into their games. Some see this as a ploy for money, others see it as a fun feature. Regardless of how you view Amiibos, the feature is awesome to see on the New 3DS. The New 3DS also adds in the ability to take 3D photos and videos, and the cameras even implement face tracking for smoother 3D. Finally the new use of AR cards puts into use what the Vita has started. For many AR is a beloved way to game, and seeing it on the 3DS is a breath of fresh air for them. There doesn’t seem to be too many features missing from the 3DS at all.
Nvidia Shield- The Nvidia Shield doesn’t boast a massive amount of features, or blow us away by any form of the word. The systems biggest feature is the ability to stream PC games straight to your device. This feature works almost flawlessly at times, and then at times it runs like a 90 year old man at a 10k. The only big downside of the streaming is that the user’s computer must have a very high video card, meaning adopting the system might cost you a nice penny. The system allows users to just go pick up any old SD card, and the fact that it runs android is always an upside. Finally the system does feature gyroscope and GPS which makes for some really fun racing games. The system could use some more features, but it doesn’t disappoint assuming gamers have the necessary equipment.
As always, announcing a winner isn’t what we will do here. You have been presented with everything you need to know about the big boys of the mobile gaming market. Now is the time for you t decide which system you feel is the best. Let us know what your favorite handheld system is in the comments below. Finally make sure to subscribe to the VitaBoys to be entered in a weekly game giveaway and to keep up with all Mobile Gaming.