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Shortly after, reports of development kits for the handheld had reportedly already been shipped to numerous video game developers including both first-party and third-party developers to start making games for the device, In the same month, VG247 released pictures of an early prototype version showing a PSP Go-like slide-screen design along with two analog sticks, two cameras and a microphone, though the report mentioned that overheating issues had since caused them to move away from the design in favor of a model more similar to the original Play Station Portable device.
Throughout 2010, Sony would not confirm these reports of a PSP successor, but would make comments regarding making future hardware.
and a February 22, 2012 release date for America and Europe, although a limited edition was released a week earlier in North America on February 15, 2012, which included the 3G/Wi Fi model of the device, the game Little Deviants, a limited-edition carry case, and a 4 GB memory card.
The sales of the Vita started strong at launch, but then stalled and greatly underperformed.
Despite this, the system still only managed to sell 4 million units worldwide in its first 10 months on the market, Still, the system under-performed; while Sony projected selling 16 million units of combined Vita and PSP systems, it had to slash its forecast twice in the same year—down to 12 and then 10 million units sold.
With higher profile games not pushing the system sales enough in 2012, big third party companies like Ubisoft and Activision started reducing or eliminating support for the system, especially in the West.
It primarily competes with the Nintendo 3DS as part of the eighth generation of video game consoles.
The system's design was created to meld the experience of big budget, dedicated video game platforms with the then up-and-coming trend of mobile gaming through smart phones and tablets.
However, in the year after the device's successful launch, sales of the hardware and its bigger budget games stalled, threatening to end its lifespan.
The Vita had a strong launch in Japan, selling over 300,000 units in its first week of availability, though figures shortly afterwards shrunk down 78% to under 73,000 sold in its second week, and then settled into about 12,000 sold per week in the following weeks.
The system continued to get high-profile games over the course of 2012, including Gravity Rush, Little Big Planet PS Vita, Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed, Persona 4 Golden, Assassin's Creed III: Liberation, and Call of Duty: Black Ops: Declassified.