The PlayStation Vita in 2020

Screenshot captured on PlayStation TV

The PS Vita first released back in 2011 as the successor to the PlayStation Portable. Following the PlayStation Portable’s success, Sony aimed to create a handheld that brought console quality games on the go. With games like Uncharted: Golden Abyss and Killzone: Mercenary near launch, Sony managed to hold up to that promise for the first years. Despite being a powerful piece of hardware, the Vita still comes down as one of Sony’s biggest failures. While Sony dropped support early, there is still a dedicated fanbase that continue to play the Vita even in 2020.

Quality Games On the Go

Despite a slow start, the Vita has a diverse library of established games. From shooters to platformers, there is a genre for everyone to get into. However, RPGs and the Indie scene is where the Vita tends to shine. Having hundreds of RPGs to choose from the Vita solidified itself as an RPG machine. From titles like Final Fantasy to Disgaea, the Vita had an RPG for everyone. Pretty much every Vita owner has a copy of Persona 4 Golden at this point. That game alone has sold consoles when it first came out. Though most companies have dropped support for the vita, many indie devs have breathed some life into the console. From having games such as Stardew Valley, Undertale, and Shovel Knight on the go makes the Vita a great choice for people who enjoy a good indie game.

Legacy Content

My personal Vita. Top row is Vita games, middle for PS One, and bottom for PSP.

Through backwards compatibility the vita can play PlayStation Portable as well as the Original PlayStation games. While this is only digitally through the PSN store, this still opens many different options from two great consoles in Sony’s history. The Vita can carry multiple different Final Fantasy games as well as every mainline Persona game aside from Persona 5. While every PSP game and PS game are not on the PSN store, many of the big hits are on there. This is great for the games that are hard or may be too expensive to get ahold of on original hardware. Looking at you The Misadventures of Tronne Bonne.

Modding and Homebrew

The modding community on the PS Vita is still going in strong. There is the obvious thing like running game backups. However, a modded Vita can do so much more. A lot of retro emulators run perfectly with only a little slowdown when getting up to N64 and GameBoy Advance games. Games such as Doom have received homebrew ports so that they run natively on the system. It is also possible to unlock the PSP mode and play any PSP and PS One backup regardless of whether it is on the PSN store. And if memory size is an issue, modders have made it so micro SD cards can be used. By using an adapter, it is possible to replace the game card slot with a micro SD and run backups from there. Honestly, the Vita modding community have done a lot with this dying system.

Despite how badly the system failed, the PS Vita still proves to be an impressive piece of tech. With three different libraries of games to choose from the PS Vita has thousands of hours of entertainment for any PlayStation fan. And that is before taking modding into account. Who knows what will be added in the future?

About Maya Moraleja

Maya first started gaming at the age of three with a copy of Pokemon Silver on the Gameboy color and just fell in love with the hobby. Expanding her horizons on different games and genres turned into something that eventually lead to her seeking out a career in gaming.

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