Essential Games for New Vita Owners

We're into 2021 and at the end of its time, the Vita still isn't going quietly into the night. New buyers are popping up all over the place (hello, and welcome) and the first question on their minds is, what games should I get?


If you want to see how the Vita lists have evolved over the course of this blog, here are some from the heady days of 2012 and 2015.

Based on several tweet fests, here's a list the community has come up with that covers pretty much all tastes and bases, broken down into hopefully useful categories to help new players out. If you want more detail on a game, they might be on the review list.

Feel free to comment with any you think are missing! And, remember, there's still a decent roster of new games to come, see the release list.

Also, if you want to play retro games, there's a whole feature on that over here!

Vita Exclusives (originally) 
Persona 4 Golden
Uncharted: Golden Abyss
Killzone Mercenary
Gravity Rush
Assassin's Creed Liberation

Monster Hunting
Freedom Wars 
Soul Sacrifice
God Eater Resurrection/God Eater 2 Rage Burst
Toukiden I/II

Digimon World: Cyber Sleuth
Demon Gaze
Romancing Saga 3 (NEW) 
Rainbow Skies
Cosmic Star Heroine
World of Final Fantasy
Final Fantasy X/X2
Dungeon Travelers 2
Darkest Dungeon
Senran Kagura Shinovi Versus
Atelier Sophie
Ys: Memories of Celceta
Mary Skelter: Nightmares
Trails of Cold Steel
Conception II: CotSS
Akiba’s Trip: Undead & Undressed (not Akiba's Beat, which is terrible)
Punch Line
Yomawari Night Alone
Yomawari Midnight Shadow
Tokyo Xanadu (very similar to Trails of Cold Steel meets Persona)
Guard Duty (NEW)
SwordBreaker (NEW)

Visual Novels
Steins Gate
Steins Gate 0
Hakuoki Edo Blossoms
Hakuoki Kyoto Winds
Amnesia Memories
Muv Luv
Period Cube
Root Letter
Death Mark
Zero Time Dilemma
Collar x Malice
Code:Realize Guardian of Rebirth
Code: Realize Future Blessings
Nicole (NEW)
My Aunt is a Witch (NEW)

Hot Shots Golf: World Invitational
Virtua Tennis World Tour (physical only)
Olli Olli (1 and 2)
NFL 13 (physical only)
MLB 14 (physical only)
FIFA '15 (physical only)
Ganbare Super Strikers (NEW)

Ridge Racer
Need for Speed: Most Wanted
WipEout 2048
Horizon Chase Turbo (NEW) 

Borderlands 2
Riddled Corpses DX
Rogue Aces
Velocity 2X
Xenon Valkyrie
Son of Scoregasm
Neon Chrome
Risk of Rain
Soldner 2X
Aqua Kitty DX
Geometry Wars 3
Hotline Miami
Shakedown Hawaii
Vasara Collection 
Twin Breakers (NEW)
Xeno Crisis (NEW) 
Ultracore (NEW) 
Takotan (NEW)
Astro Aqua Kitty (NEW) 
Habroxia 2 (NEW) 
ScourgeBringer (NEW) 
88 Heroes (NEW)

Arcana Heart 3
Blazblue: Continuum Shift or BlazBlue: Chrono Phantasma
Street Fighter x Tekken
Mortal Kombat
Marvel vs Capcom 3
Dead or Alive 5+


0000 (NEW)
Legend of the Skyfish (NEW)
Hinmo (NEW)
Dragon's Crown, Shantae
Sir Eatsalot, Reverie
Stealth Inc., Undertale
Lumo, Slain
Axiom Verge, Sound Shapes
Odin Sphere, Rayman Legends
Iconoclasts, Shovel Knight
Chasm, Spelunky
Steamworld Dig, Steamworld Dig 2
Salt and Sanctuary, Lara Croft Go
Hitman Go, Run Sackboy, Run!
Legend of the Skyfish (NEW)

Strategy/Puzzle Games

Desert Ashes, Meco Wars: Desert Ashes,
Disgaea 3: Afternoon of Darkness, Natural Doctrine,
XCOM: Enemy Unknown, Space Hulk,
Hyperdevotion Noire, Deception IV: Blood Ties,
Civilization Revolution 2+
MekoRama (NEW)
PSP Games Worth Playing On Vita: (PSN region choice may vary)

The Vita's predecessors, the PlayStation Portable, sold 80 million units making it a huge success and attracting many console gaming staples to the portable scene while inventing some new legends. You can still try most of them today, but many have vanished from the PSN and others will follow.

Persona 3, Gran Turismo, Grand Theft Auto Liberty City Stories,
Loco Roco, Patapon 1,2,3, Resistance Retribution
God of War: Chains of Olympus, Metal Gear Solid Peace Walker
Monster Hunter Freedom Unite, Tekken 6, Tekken 5 Dark Dessurection, Dissidia Final Fantasy, Patchwork Heroes, Half Second Heroes, Ridge Racer, The Third Birthday
Black Rock Shooter, Armored Core 3 Portable, Army of Two PSP,
Class of Heroes, Dead or Alive Paradise, Growlanser, Gungnir,
Harvest Moon, MediEvil Resurrection

PlayStation One titles: (PSN region choice may vary)

Crash Tag Team Racing, Metal Gear Solid, Rayman, Resident Evil 1,2,3,
Final Fantasy VII, VIII, IX, Vagrant Story, Ridge Racer Type 4, Spyro Series,
Crash Bandicoot 3,  Chrono Trigger, Wild Arms, Alundra, Castlevania Symphony of the Night,