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PS3 and Vita Cross Buy potential is 'limited', Sony admits

Separate development environments mean little chance of easy porting

A top Sony executive has admitted that PlayStation's new Cross Buy feature, which allows certain PS3 games to be played on PS Vita at no extra cost, is hampered by the technological differences between both devices.

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The Cross Buy initiative means that people who buy certain PS3 games (including PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale and Ratchet & Clank: Full Frontal Assault) will effectively own a licence to play the game on Vita too.

However, from a development standpoint, two separate and distinct builds of the game will have to be created if they are to work on both systems.

Jim Ryan, the chief executive at PlayStation Europe, told CVG that "the development environments are rather different".

"PS Vita is a more PC-based environment whereas the PS3 is a more bespoke development environment. So the cross-over between both platforms is rather limited."

The revelation casts doubts on whether development studios will have the funding and time to create two distinct game builds despite charging for just one single licence. It is rumoured, however, that PlayStation 4 will implement a PC-based environment, theoretically meaning that future PS4 games could more easily cross over to Vita.

In an interview with CVG, Ryan was asked for his view on suggestions that only a few - if any - third party publishers will utilise the Cross Buy feature.

"Well, I think our priority with publishers is to provide them an environment, in terms of installed base, where they can publish profitably on Vita," he replied.

"That's our challenge and it is something we have to rise to".

The full interview with Ryan can be found here.

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