The more responsible gaming hardware enthusiasts among you have probably reserved your excitement over the recently announced NGP until you learn the device's ever-important launch price. Given the impressive specs of the handheld -- as well as Sony's infamous tendency to overcharge for its new gaming hardware at launch -- we wouldn't blame you for worrying. Sony Computer Entertainment Europe boss Andrew House recently provided Eurogamer with the first potential hints about the console's MSRP, saying, "I can't put a ballpark on it in terms of figures, but what I would say is that we will shoot for an affordable price that's appropriate for the handheld gaming space."

However, Sony's not going to be giving the things away; House also shot down a Eurogamer source who claimed Sony would be selling the device at a loss. House explained, "we would want to have our hardware be profitable, in addition to our software," later adding, "We've experienced both sides and we know which one we like to be on!" That seems like a tricky balancing act: How exactly is Sony planning on introducing new (assumedly high-investment) technology at an affordable consumer price point and still hope for the NGP to remain profitable? Wizardry? Alchemy? Both?

As far as a firm number, Game Informer was the only outlet able to get anything out of Sony's biggest wigs -- when GI brought up the enormous launch price of the PS3, Sony Computer Entertainment president of worldwide studios Shu Yoshida laughed, and replied, "It's not going to be $599." We're glad events unfolded in that order -- had he said "It's not going to be $599," then laughed maniacally, we would have started to get really nervous.

This article was originally published on Joystiq.