What You Should Do With Your PS Vita

If you own a Vita and have played the exclusives, there's only one thing left for you to do with your Vita.

Ahh yes, the PlayStation Vita. So much hope, so much hype, and as expected, it doesn't match up to consumer expectations. (Those expectations weren't even really high, mind you.)

The Vita debuted back in 2012 with big ambitions. Launch titles like Uncharted: Golden Abyss and Killzone were supposed to be the cannonball dive that Sony needed to jump back into handheld market. Sadly, although these were very good games for the PS Vita (amongst other notables like Gravity Rush and Tearaway), this cannonball dive turns out to be just a tiny splash on Nintendo's radar. 

The 3DS is the main competitor for Sony's handheld system, and the odds are heavily against them. The 3DS has amounted a vast catalogue of games, and not just Mario & Luigi ones either. There was Bravely Default, Fire Emblem: Awakening and the classic Mario Kart 7. Sony's handheld tried to put up a fight with some great titles like Uncharted and Persona 4. But sadly, I just don't think it's enough. 

I'm not writing this to take a cheap shot at Vita owners and tell them their product is a failure. I myself have owned and played the Vita quite a lot, and finished their good games within a few months. Sadly, after the wave of good Vita exclusives passed, there wasn't much else for the handheld. Most of the JRPGs are all in Japanese, and the PlayStation Plus service didn't really crank out any worthwhile games for the Vita either.


Hell, the new Tales of Hearts R is just a (pretty good) remaster/remake of the DS version of the same game.

I really wanted to like the Vita, I really did. I was hyped up to play the games it had to offer. And honestly, I had a good time with them. I'm sure that I made the Vita's asking price worth it with the (unfortunately limited) number of games that made Vita stand out. And if anyone is thinking about getting one, I would recommend it to them only if they want to play the exclusive games. Frankly, all their other games, especially the indie titles, are all just ports from another platform (mostly PC and mobile). Perhaps if there were more Vita-only games, the system would be more successful. 

So what should you do with it?

 The answer for me was simple. Trade the Vita for a 3DS. There just weren't enough original Vita games to keep me invested. If you've played Vita games like Persona 4, Final Fantasy X/X-2, Uncharted, Tearaway, Gravity Rush, (which is coming to the PS4, another blow to the Vita) Dragon's Crown and Borderlands 2, then you've experienced the best that the Vita has to offer. Everything else is just indie games that you could probably play on your PS4, or PC. 

I know it sounds like I'm hating on Sony's handheld, but I'm just trying to help gamers make good decisions for their entertainment.

I'm sorry (but not sorry) to all the Vita owners who disagree with me, and if you believe the Vita's an awesome handheld with plenty of great games to come, then good for you. But I'm betting I'm not the only one who has bought the PS Vita and is disappointed with the lack of content compared to the 3DS. I just had the sense to recognize when I've made a bad purchase and need to make a change. I hope all you gamers can too. 


I've been playing games since I was small but only started to really observe and critique a few years back. Been writing reviews for games (albeit, old games because not everyone can have a crazy fast rig). When I'm not writing about games, I generally do some photography as well, so check that out if you've got some time.

Published Mar. 22nd 2015
  • Curtis Dillon
    Each to their own. I own both a Vita and a 3DS and I much prefer my Vita. Like every Nintendo product, the 3DS is worth using once every six months, i.e when a game comes out, but the Vita gets games every week, even if they are just indies or ports. The Vita is my go-to machine for games like Hotline Miami and Guacamelee and I'm more than happy for that to continue!
  • Mark Finch
    I think everyone's forgetting that the Vita is a handheld system which is meant for gaming on the go. If you only play it at home, what's the point if you have your console or computer? When on the go, it's meant for shorter playing times that make the system last longer over time.

    Sure Nintendo has more games, but it's just the typical Nintendo games. The Vita has a better selection and system. It seems like some people will just dump a system just because they have to always have new stuff.

    As for complaining about exclusives, those don't mean the best games. My favorite is Borderlands 2, playing that on the go is amazing.

    Just offering a different perspective. You can't forget the Vita is a handheld.
  • Elijah Beahm
    Featured Columnist
    How on earth could you say PS Plus didn't offer great titles for the Vita? Roughly 90% of my Vita library has been Plus titles, and the vast majority of them have been excellent. If it weren't for my PS Vita, I probably would have never played Hotline Miami or CounterSpy.

    Arguing that you get indies also available on PC is invalid as often it's through PS Plus that players have received new and exciting games they never would have tried. Do you think it's by accident that Kick & Fennick, Don't Starve: Giant Edition, and more were available on PS Plus at launch?

    Some of us also enjoy using the Vita for social media, YouTube, and as a second screen app to manage trophies and PSN messages/party chat. You don't even address these angles.

    I'm perfectly willing to acknowledge the handheld has problems, but you give a short sighted argument with lackluster reasoning. This theme of personal preference over hard evidence also cropped up in your article about FPS games. I'm sorry mate, but you need to give me more than "I'm bored with the AAA Vita games and can't bother with indies" to convince me to even begin consider trading in my Vita.

    Extra Credits talked about this topic, as have many developers and industry veterans. You could have pulled together a solid list of reasons and multiple ways to proceed (because one size never fits all). Instead, this feels more like a blog post than editorial.

    I say this not to be mean, but out of concern. As a member of the audience here, you're getting the opposite response out of me that you are aiming for. Even if you don't take my input, at least get someone else's. You have some good word flow and formatting, but you have got to work on the content.
  • Farrel Nobel
    Thanks for the feedback :) If you like your indie games and the titles in PS Plus, then good for you, seriously, some months there are some nice titles in the PS Plus but they come few and far between for me.

    I'm not the most well informed person about the PS Vita, but being a dissapointed Vita owner (and not the only one at that) and also someone who writes about video games, I just felt this was something to talk about, however not-fleshed-out the article may be.

    And about your social media thing (excluding party messages and trophies), you could easily get that in your phone or tablet. That's my 2 cents anways.

    Again, thanks for the feedback on the article though :)
  • topher339
    Whenever I look back I always regret getting my Vita. $250 I should've kept. Now, I love the system, it's nothing short of awesome. Between the beautiful screen, touch pad, touch screen and dual thumb sticks it so much potential, specially as far a shooters go. But all that potential remains untapped. Yes, it had some good games such as those listed but most of it's games were ports or otherwise didn't break a 7 star rating from players. I had it for half a year then found myself using it mostly for Netflix. After I got a smartphone I didn't even use the Vita anymore. Wound up giving it to my brother who basically went through the same series of events. Should've got a 3DS like he did.
  • Farrel Nobel
    Yes true, its a good system. hell, it's the most powerful handheld out there, in my opinion. There's just very few exclusives that boost that "gotta have this" factor.
  • Casey_7121
    I keep my vita around because I have the PSN and I get a ton of free games/cheap games every month. That being said, I agree about the lack of titles.
  • Farrel Nobel
    I do agree about the free titles, some of them are pretty awesome, but others are basically indie games you could get on PC lol.
  • TheSteelPenguin
    Totally agree. IMO there's not really much reason to own a PS4 and a Vita, especially with borderlands 2 and x/x-2 remastered coming to PS4. But if you only have a Wii U, you're missing out on lots of great options for 3DS (especially the ones you mentioned)
  • Farrel Nobel
    YES, although the Wii U looks like there are some decent games there (super mario 3d world, windwaker HD, super smash, mario kart 8). plus the online for wii u is free which is nice. Sadly wii u doesn't have bravely default or fire emblem: awakening. 2 VERY good 3DS games.

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