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PS Vita gets more games, entertainment options in 2012

Despite the doom and gloom wrought by lagging sales, the future seems bright for the PlayStation Vita gaming handheld.

James Martin

Speaking to thousands of press and observers at Sony's E3 press conference, PlayStation CEO and President Jack Tretton spoke fondly of the Vita's future. One major reason for his enthusiasm: 60 new games will arrive for the Vita in 2012, which the device sorely needs.

Those wanting more items to play might also find the upcoming availability of PlayStation 1 games for Vita appealing, including major hits like Tomb Raider and Final Fantasy VII. The PSP also played PSOne games, so nothing truly mesmerizing here.

Tretton also revealed that we should expect Hulu Plus and Crackle on the Vita "soon," and he couldn't seem to resist confirming that Call of Duty: Black Ops Declassified for the Vita comes this "holiday season."

Sony Computer Entertainment

Assassin's Creed III: Liberation, a new sneaky slasher, also arrives on Vita in October. For the first time in the series, this Vita version of the game features a female protagonist. Tretton noted Liberation makes full use of the Vita's array of sensors (such as the rear touch panel) and the "Near" location discovery service. The game debuts on October 30 along with a separate white Vita bundle that includes a 4GB memory card.

Now playing: Watch this: Assassin's Creed III takes to the seas

Another major title for the Vita announced and demoed at E3 included PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale, a battle game featuring popular PlayStation video game characters in a scenario that appears vastly similar to Nintendo's Super Smash Bros. No release date for Royale, but the overall consensus seems to rest on a fall timeframe.

Now playing: Watch this: Sony debuts PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale

Like Microsoft and Nintendo, Sony used its E3 presser as a vehicle to detail a second-screen strategy. Sony's version of this concept falls upon cross-controller compatibility between Vita and the PS3, such as the ability for gamers to use both devices to play against one another in Battle Royale. LittleBig Planet 2 should receive a cross-play downloadable content (DLC) pack (that includes many goodies) later this year, allowing one to use the Vita to play alongside the PS3 or as a supped up level builder.

James Martin