Sony: Straight PSP Ports Work If Your Franchise Is Big Enough

Sony has made it clear that the original development philosophy of the PSP — porting console experiences to a handheld — was a failed one.

The new model, as Sony has described it to MTV Multiplayer several times, is rooted in expanding big franchises with a new experience on PSP.

When I recently spoke with John Koller, head of hardware marketing at Sony Computer Entertainment America, he specifically cited “Transformers” and “Iron Man” as proof that a new PSP development model, one anchored on franchises, was working.

But there’s a problem…

Those games are only half of the “winning” equation he’s talking about. “Transformers” and “Iron Man” are ports of console games. “Final Fantasy VII: Crisis Core,” however, is something wholly unique but rooted in a giant franchise. So, can franchise alone carry a game? If it’s big enough, Sony argues.

The NPD Group told MTV Multiplayer that the PSP version of “Transformers” sold 442,000 copies, while “Iron Man” pushed 242,000 copies. In Sony’s eyes, those are both extremely successful PSP games…even if they use a “failed model.”

Koller has told me several times to expect big franchise games to be announced 2009. Those should start being announced soon. But will the inevitable “Transformers 2″ and “Iron Man 2″ follow the same formula?

[Image Credit: Paramount Pictures]

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