Stop all the clocks, cut off the telephone, prevent the dog from barking with a juicy bone. The PlayStation Vita has been discontinued by Sony, and many people are incredibly sad about it, myself included.
Launched in Japan in 2011, the console initially sold well, and it had enough grunt to power a decent 3D experience, years before Nintendo’s Switch blew us away by letting us play Breath of the Wild sat on the toilet.
Unfortunately, Sony soon stepped away from the console, leaving it without first party support when they announced in 2015 that they would stop making their own games for the PS Vita and instead focus on creating titles for its home entertainment console, the PlayStation 4.
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Without this, and with only a few decent third party games to sustain it after this point, the fanbase withered and died, each new announcement causing a ripple of excitement through the PS Vita die-hards still surrounding the handheld console.
We spoke to Mike Diver, head of content at Gaming Bible, says that the console’s failure to find an audience wasn’t so much the result of Nintendo’s competition with the popular Nintendo 3DS and its hybrid effort the Nintendo Switch, but more Sony’s own failings to realise the console’s true potential.
“The Vita is a fantastic handheld, but after a slow start sales wise, its first-party support all but dried up,” said Diver. “Compare and contrast that with how Nintendo has stuck by the fading 3DS, even into 2019. That, coupled with its eye-wateringly expensive proprietary memory cards, represented a pair of knives in the Vita’s back.”
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“Nevertheless, it was a terrific platform for indies. It’s how I played the likes of Hotline Miami and Guacamelee! – and in Persona 4 Golden, holy moly, it had a genuine all-timer.”
“Me on holiday, in a little chalet in Devon, as it chucked it down, summer of 2016: without that game, there, I’d have lost my mind. I’ll always cherish the Vita, to be honest. A remarkable console that was undermined by its own creators.”
Ignoring the frustration of trying to acquire one of the weird memory cards, and the fact that it had a weird rear touch pad that made playing PS One titles nearly impossible on the device, and it really was a special piece of kit. However, it seems Sony’s own failure to take the console seriously and to support it with as much gusto as they have their current generation PlayStation 4, and also the problem-plagued PlayStation 3, ultimately doomed this console, and Sony’s handheld ambitions, to failure.
Give us your anecdotes and memories of the PlayStation Vita on Twitter on @TrustedReviews. Perhaps we can ease the pain together.