10 Essential PlayStation Vita Games You Absolutely Must Play

The PlayStation Vita might be a discontinued console, but it’s one that has remained dear to many players across the world. While support for the handheld from Sony may be minimal in 2020, there’s still some incredible games you can take on the go thanks to this treasure. Whether you’re thinking of buying a Vita, or if you already own one, here’s 10 essential games you absolutely must play.

10. Rayman Origins

screenshot from rayman origins on vita
Credit: Ubisoft

2012’s Rayman Origins is available on lots of platforms, but none quite so memorable as the PS Vita. Origins was (and is!) top-tier Rayman, offering all the fun of the classics but taking full advantage of the tech at the time. The game is fondly remembered as being one of Rayman’s best outings, and the PS Vita version boasts an impressive Metacritic score of 88. One for puzzle-platform fans, this is absolutely essential on Vita!

9. Hotline Miami

hotline miami in the last of us part 2
Credit: Naughty Dog

Another 2012 gem, Hotline Miami saw something of a resurgence in 2020 thanks to an Easter egg in Naughty Dog’s The Last of Us Part 2. Seeing a character play the iconic shooter on a Vita made a lot of fans nostalgic for this title – and it’s not surprising! Hotline Miami has legions of fans, and it’s hoped the new wave of love for the game could bring about another revisit to the classic, which saw its sequel launch (not on Vita) in 2019. The original and arguably the best, Hotline Miami is worth adding to your library!

8. LittleBigPlanet PS Vita

art for littlebigplanet vita
Credit: Media Molecule

LittleBigPlanet – but on the go?! The beloved PlayStation series has seen some changes over the years, perhaps most notably with the PS5’s Sackboy: A Big Adventure. While we may have deviated somewhat from the original Media Molecule games, the PS Vita-exclusive LittleBigPlanet is a wonderful throwback to the early days of one of Sony’s finest IPs. Developed by Double Eleven, Tarsier Studios and XDev Studio Europe, this might not be Sackboy’s most memorable outing, but it’s impossible not to play if you own a Vita!

7. Velocity 2X

Velocity 2x screenshot
Credit: Sony

Velocity 2X does guns-a-blazin’ like no-one else and is recognised as being one of the highest-rated Vita games on Metacritic. A puzzle-platformer with shoot-em-up action, Velocity 2X improves on its sequel in every way possible. The game’s massive success means it has come to more platforms in recent years, so even if you don’t have a Vita, it’s worth checking it out on PS4, Xbox One or Nintendo Switch.

6. Silent Hill: Book of Memories

silent hill vita screenshot
Credit: Konami

Admittedly, I am a little biased here. I adore Silent Hill (specifically 1-4), and while Book of Memories’ dungeon-crawling gameplay is a vast departure from the mainline games, it’s definitely a fun ride. Developed by WayForward Technologies, this isn’t the first game you think of when you think of Silent Hill, but it’s worth playing. As a Vita exclusive, it’s absolutely essential if you’re a fan of the series and you own the console.

5. Final Fantasy X/ X-2 HD Remaster

final fantasy x hd on vita
Credit: Square Enix

Heralded as two of the best games in the Final Fantasy series, the Final Fantasy X/ X-2 HD Remaster titles are lovingly remade in full HD. Quite possibly some of the best FF games of all time, these two gems could be the only games in your Vita library and you’d still be a happy bunny. There’s something extra-special about having these adventures in the palm of your hand too, and it’s why we love the Vita so darn much.

4. Tearaway

art from Tearaway
Credit: Media Molecule

Tearaway served as something as a tech demo for the Vita, giving players the chance to use all of the console’s features (like the camera and the rear touch panel) to progress through the game. It was – and is – so much more than that though, offering up a wonderful platform adventure for all ages. From the geniuses at Media Molecule, Tearaway is an utterly charming title which takes everything we love about early LittleBigPlanet and puts a new edge on the experience.

3. Uncharted: Golden Abyss

Uncharted golden abyss screenshot
Credit: Bend Studio

The Vita is a Sony console, which means an Uncharted title is absolutely one of its essential games. Developed by Days Gone studio, Bend Studio, Uncharted: Golden Abyss took Nathan Drake’s adventures to the small screen. While it lacks some of the finesse of its Naughty Dog counterparts, Golden Abyss is a classic Uncharted adventure, just a little bit smaller. Exclusive to the PlayStation Vita, if you want to experience all of Nathan Drake’s story, you’re going to need to pick this one up.

2. Spelunky

Screenshot from Spelunky
Credit: Derek Yu

While it’s most definitely not a Vita exclusive, Spelunky is by far one of the best games the console has to offer. The classic indie title is remembered as being one of the ones which changed the face of indie games, and it really doesn’t get much better than this 2D platformer. While it’s available on other platforms, if you own a Vita, you definitely need to have this game in your library!

1 . Persona 4 Golden

Persona 4 golden on vita screenshot
Credit: Atlus

The Persona games shot to fame with the release of Persona 5, but the series has been around for a lot, lot longer. Persona 4 Golden is one of the series’ stand-out titles, and while it did come to PC this year, it was previously a Vita exclusive. Persona 4 Golden is an expanded version of Persona 4: The Golden, and its release actually caused a surge in Vita console sales (at least in Japan). If you own a Vita, it doesn’t get more essential than one of the console’s most celebrated games: Persona 4 Golden.

So there you have it, 10 essential games you need in your PlayStation Vita library. If the games haven’t sold the console to you, we’ve spoken before about why the handheld Sony console is still worth buying even to this day. While the console may Rest in Peace, we’re never going to say goodbye!

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Featured Image Credit: Sony