It’s funny, I picked up a PS4 for Black Friday and I’ve slowly been amassing my library. I own quite a few must-have titles like Grand Theft Auto V, Dragon Age: Inquisition, Destiny, Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag, Farcry 4, Shadow of Mordor and more. Yet, despite all of that I find myself constantly returning to my library of Vita games. I can’t explain it really.
I like to attribute it to the fact that the pick-up-and-play support is best for my schedule, but it’s probably more truthful to say I just love playing games on the Vita. Hell, I use remote play more than I do native play. Though, I’ll admit some of the remote play control schemes really fucking suck.
Since I’ve had my Vita for a while now, I thought it was finally time that I put together a list of my favorite titles. Keep in mind, these are personal favorites that have some significance to me. That doesn’t mean they are the absolute best games on the platform — you might have your own list. I’m not pretentious enough to claim this is the end-all be-all of Top 10 Vita lists.
Anyway, let’s get to it shall we? These are in no particular order.
Sword Art Online: Hollow Fragment
Let’s get this out of the way, yes the translation is a fucking trainwreck in this game. Like, I give a to you bad headache kind of trainwreck. Still, the game is a great action RPG with a unique MMO-style battle system that doesn’t ever get old. When I first picked up my Vita I was craving a great RPG for a long time, and SAO filled that void.
Disgaea 4: A Promise Revisited
The Disgaea series is arguably one of the most in-depth and expansive strategy RPGs around. Disgaea 4 is no different, with tons and tons of replayability. We’re talking like hundreds — nay, thousands — of hours worth of content. Personally, I need to switch things up after a while and jump into a faster-paced game, but I always return to Disgaea to do a bit more grinding in the item world.
If you own a Vita, then you need to own Freedom Wars. It’s that simple.
Dragon’s Crown meshes 2D brawling-action gameplay with an expansive loot system — similar to the Diablo games (the loot bit anyway). In addition, the art style is fantastic.
Ragnarok Odyssey: Ace
Ragnarok Odyssey: Ace is one of those games you either love or hate. There are a lot of things similar to the Monster Hunter series in this game, but RO:A is much faster paced. To put that into perspective, you’ll be button mashing when attacking things. There’s a certain rhythm to it of course, but MH definitely calls for a lot more strategy. Still, RA:O is a lot of fun to play. I think so anyway.
Hot Shots Golf: World Invitational
The Hot Shots Golf series has always been a lot of fun, but some of my best memories happened while playing on PSP. Naturally, it makes sense that I’d also own the newest title for Vita. I love me some golf on-the-go. Who doesn’t?
A fucking badass, sexy-looking FPS for the PS Vita. To be honest, you really can’t ask for anything more. Killzone: Mercenary has it all. A fantastic single-player campaign with tons of replayability. A competitive, online multiplayer mode that you can also play offline with bots (botzone DLC is a couple bucks extra). On top of that, there are tons of customization and loadout options. If you want to shoot a few helghast in the face while you’re sitting on the shitter, Mercenary is the way to go.
One could easily make the argument that Muramasa Rebirth is the most stunning game on the Vita. Seriously, the art style, scenery, and visuals are that damn good. It doesn’t hurt either that the game is a lot of fun. Give it a try if you haven’t already.
Dungeon Hunter: Alliance
What can I say? It’s a guilty pleasure. I love action, hack-and-slash RPGs, and Dungeon Hunter: Alliance just happens to scratch that itch… sort of. I’ll be the first to admit it’s not one of the best games ever made, hell it’s not even really a good game. There are a lot of framerate issues, and it’s a port of a mobile title. There are only three playable classes. The loot is pretty uninspiring and bland.
All that aside, you can level and gear up your character to your heart’s content and that’s what I love most about the genre. For whatever reason, I find myself returning to DH:A every so often for a little hack-and-slash action on-the-go.
Disclaimer: I picked up Dungeon Hunter during a sale for a couple bucks (heavily discounted). At the time of launch, this game was the same price as any other Vita title ($50). I would not have paid that much and I feel sorry for anyone who did. If you can get it on the cheap, go for it, but don’t spend too much on this one.
Tales of Hearts R
The Tales of series on the go. It’s endearing, lots of fun and the characters are pretty interesting – if you can handle Japanese voiceovers and English subtitles. For those that can’t handle those two things why do you even have a PS Vita?
YS: Memories of Celceta
YS:MOC is another great action RPG on the Vita, and as you can see from the list I love roleplaying games of all shapes and sizes.
Before you get on my case about not including your favorite Vita title — read: Persona 4 fans — here’s a quick list of some honorable mentions that almost made the cut. As for Persona 4, I didn’t include it on the list because I feel like everyone mentions it any time a “top” Vita list comes up. It’s a great game, and if you own a Vita you should definitely give it a play. That said, it’s not one of my go-to titles.
- Persona 4 Golden
- Minecraft Vita Edition
- Soul Sacrifice Delta
- Atelier Series (Rorona, Meruru, Totori)
- Need for Speed: Most Wanted
- Unit 13
- Uncharted: Golden Abyss
- Toukiden: The Age of Demons
- Demon Gaze
- Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc
- Senran Kagura Shinovi Versus
- Gravity Rush
- Metal Gear Solid HD Collection (2 & 3)