PS Vita Reviews

Reviews of PlayStation Vita titles.

Title: Sword Art Online: Hollow Fragment
Developer: Namco Bandai Games
Game Type: PlayStation Vita
Download: 3.0 GB
NA Availability: 
Digital Download

EU Availability: Digital Download

Action RPG’s are plentiful on the PS Vita, but their variety is not.  If you take a look at the Vita’s collection of Action Role-Playing Games without looking at backwards compatible games, what will you find?  Ys: Memories of Celceta.  Ragnarok Odyssey Ace.  Soul Sacrifice Delta.  Toukiden: Age of Demons.  God Eater 2 in Japan.  The upcoming Freedom Wars and Monster Hunter Frontier G.  These are many, and there are others as well.  However, almost all of these are one specific type of Action RPG’s: Hunting Games.

Hunting Games are slowly taking over the handheld market.  Even Nintendo is jumping in the trend.  However, PlayStation Vita fans don’t have to fret for much longer, as there are more Action RPG’s coming, and some of them are quite unique and different from Hunting Games.  Some of them are almost in a genre of themselves, though some still feel that any Action RPG where you fight giant monsters is automatically a Hunting Game.

That statement is false, and a misconception about the review I am about to give you.  Namco Bandai Games have brought a truly unique Action RPG to the PlayStation Vita, getting its roots from a video game-themed anime series.  An Offline MMORPG for all intents and purposes, here is our official review of one of the most anticipated PS Vita titles of the year, Sword Art Online: Hollow Fragment!

Continue Reading

Title: Phantom Breaker: Battlegrounds
Developer: 5pb Games USA
Game Type: PlayStation Vita
Download: 1.1 GB
NA Availability: 
Digital Download

EU Availability: Digital Download

The PlayStation Vita is home to a lot of different genres of games, new and old.  One genre in particular that it is in no shortage of is the fighting and brawler genre.  There are a lot of fighting games on the Vita, from PlayStation All-Stars to BlazBlue to Street Fighter x Tekken.  One thing it doesn’t have a lot of is the kind of brawler that doesn’t always have you only playing through one on one fights in small arenas.  There were some games years back that had you playing a brawler against multiple enemies across expansive areas.

That genre isn’t completely dead.  Not that long ago, the PlayStation Vita got a game much like this.  Taking advantage of how eager Third Party developers are to port and remake games from other consoles onto the Vita, we have gotten a new brawler to the system that isn’t like any other on the system.  This game was taken straight from the Xbox Live Arcade.

Having only been released for about a week, this game still has a lot going for it, though it is one of the many digital-only titles for the Vita, only playable if you buy it and download it from the PlayStation Store.  Pulling nostalgic music and graphics with fast-paced brawler gameplay and an anime style of characters, here is our official review of Phantom Breaker: Battlegrounds.

Continue Reading

2014-07-30-100839

Title: Disgaea 4: A Promise Revisited
Developer: NIS America
Game Type: PlayStation Vita
Download: 2.9 GB
NA Availability: 
Digital Download | Retail

EU Availability: Digital Download | Retail

Tactical RPG’s are a rare breed of games, and always have been.  In the realm of Role-Playing Games, you see a lot of Action RPG’s, like The Elder Scrolls, Kingdom Hearts, and Star Ocean.  Even more plentiful are turn-based RPG’s, often called “Console RPG’s” like Final Fantasy and Persona.  These two sub-genres make up the majority of the RPG library, no matter which system you’re playing on.  Rarely is it that you find a Tactical RPG, or a Strategy RPG.

Although they are somewhat rare, there are a fair amount of Strategy RPG’s out there to be played.  If you look at the PS Vita, in particular, you will find a few games, from the backwards-compatible Final Fantasy Tactics to the Indie Game, Rainbow Moon.  Still, though, there aren’t that many games out there of this breed.  For reason as well, as SRPGs normally require a lot of patience and power-leveling to manage their high difficulty spikes.

One SRPG franchise that has done particularly well is Disgaea.  This series started on the PlayStation 2 and has seen four main franchise games as well as multiple spin-off games.  On top of that, its success is noted in the fact that all four of the “numbered” titles of the series has been remade for handheld platforms.  For an entire series to not only be put on another system, but remade on another system is no small feat.  Here is our review of the series’ latest entry, Disgaea 4: A Promise Revisited!

Continue Reading

2014-07-18-225702

Title: LEGO Batman 2: DC Super Heroes
Developer: TT Games
Game Type: PlayStation Vita
Download: 1.1 GB
NA Availability: 
Digital Download | Retail

EU Availability: Digital Download | Retail

The list of LEGO games available on the PS Vita that we have reviewed is constantly getting smaller and smaller.  We have reviewed a total of seven LEGO games available on the Vita.  Five of those are native PlayStation Vita titles and two of them PlayStation Portable titles.  From LEGO Star Wars III to LEGO: The Hobbit, there are a lot of games of this nature available to the Vita, and it is still getting more.  As it stands, there are still three native PS Vita games of LEGO fashion that we’ve not reviewed.

As you know, the LEGO games have changed as the years have gone by.  The handheld variations of these games are true of this, especially in the current generation.  The LEGO games that come out now are very different from the same games that come out on home consoles.  If you put LEGO: The Hobbit for PS Vita and LEGO: The Hobbit for PS3 side by side, it’s a world of differences, from the lack of res-pawns to the top-down perspective.

However, in the beginning of the Vita’s life time, there were some LEGO games that tried to be like their home console counterparts.  Some of these games tried and failed, not being complete games, like LEGO: The Lord of the Rings.  Today, we bring you another PS Vita LEGO game that plays like its console counterparts.  Was anything taken out of this release?  Here is our official review of the Vita’s very first LEGO game, LEGO Batman 2: DC Superheroes.

Continue Reading

2014-07-17-002638

Title: Xblaze Code: Embryo
Developer: Aksys Games, Arc System Works
Game Type: PlayStation Vita
Download: 1.4 GB
NA Availability: 
Digital Download | Retail

EU Availability: Currently Unavailable

Visual Novels are something interestingly tied to games, nowadays.  Within visual novels normally shows scenes that show character artwork on either side of the screen, along with text and dialogue along the bottom of the screen.  This has been a growing trend in gaming, especially with RPGs and more.  Not only visual novels themselves, but just story scenes in that style.

Many games are now abandoning scenes that show cinematic cutscenes, in favor of easier, visual novel-style visuals in the scenes.  There are many different examples I could give you of games that do this, even on the PlayStation Vita.  Demon Gaze.  BlazBlue: Chrono Phantasma.  Hyperdimension Neptunia: Producing Perfection. Conception II: Children of the Seven Stars.  The list goes on.  While it isn’t bad to have this sort of scenes, it is becoming a very rapid trend.

While more and more games are having scenes like this, there are full-blown games as visual novels that are coming out as well.  In Japan, there is going to be a new Fate / Stay Night game based around being a visual novel.  However, that’s not all.  Recently, Aksys Games and Arc System works released BlazBlue: Chrono Phantasma onto the PS Vita as well as a Visual Novel game that takes place in the very same
universe.  Here is our official review of the Visual Novel game, Xblaze Code: Embryo.

Continue Reading

2014-07-14-233432

Title: Street Fighter x Tekken
Developer: Capcom, Namco Bandai Games
Game Type: PlayStation Vita
Download: 2.1 GB
NA Availability: 
Digital Download | Retail

EU Availability: Digital Download | Retail

If there is one genre of games that the PlayStation Vita has plenty of, it is the genre of fighting games.  This thought isn’t even counting the many games of many genres in its backwards-compatibility list.  If you look at native PS Vita games, you will find a lot of fighters.  Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3.  BlazBlue: Continuum Shift EXTEND and Chrono Phantasma.  PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale.  Mortal Kombat.  Injustice.  For fighting fans, the PS Vita is a great system to have.

Fighting games have also presented a way to bring visually beautiful games to the PS Vita.  While some fighting games on the Vita, like Injustice and Mortal Kombat, didn’t look that great, visually, presenting a visual presentation that even the PSP might have been able to handle, some of them really raised the bar.  When Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3 launched on the Vita, for example, it almost looked exactly like the PS3 version.  It was a visual masterpiece.

There are other games that were like that as well, which is what we’re going to get into today.  Back in 2012, Capcom got together and wanted to mash together two of the most popular fighting franchises on the market into its own game.  The result was a game that not only released on both the PS3 and the PS Vita, but also had exclusive features.  Here is our official review of the cross-over fighter, Street Fighter x Tekken.

Continue Reading

14740584743_653943fab5_o

Title: Entwined
Developer: Pixelopus
Game Type: PlayStation Vita
Download: 862 MB
NA Availability: 
Digital Download

EU Availability: Digital Download

Indie Games have been increasingly important to the gaming market, especially on the PC front and the PlayStation ecosystem.  These games, built by smaller developers, have been given a focus, as of late, on several systems.  If you take a look on Steam, there will be loads and loads of Indie games for really cheap prices.  From huge games like Minecraft to smaller games like Thomas Was Alone, Indie Games are gaining a lot of traction in the gaming market.

The PlayStation Ecosystem has also gotten a large part of the Indie Game Movement.  The PlayStation 4 and PlayStation Vita have gotten many Indie Games, both brand new games as well as upgraded versions of Indies on other systems.  From games like Terraria to games like Rainbow Moon, there has been a lot of Indie activity on the PlayStation systems.

Even more are games embedded into the PlayStation Ecosystem.  Games like Flow and Flower are around for the PS4, PS3, and PS Vita and incorporate the Cross-Buy system, which lets you buy one version of the game and get the others for free.  Just recently, a new Indie game has hit the market, exclusive to PlayStation systems as well as launching on the PS Vita.  Having been shown off at E3 2014, here is our official review of the Indie Game, Entwined!

Continue Reading

2014-05-26-162527

Title: Soul Sacrifice Delta
Developer: Marvelous AQL
Game Type: PlayStation Vita
Download: 3.0 GB
NA Availability: 
Digital Download

EU Availability: Digital Download


Raiding and Hunting games have become a popular thing on the PlayStation Vita as of late.  Games like Lord of Apocalypse, Ragnarok Odyssey, Soul Sacrifice, God Eater 2, and more have released in various territories for the device.  More games are coming, outside of that as well.  Ragnarok Odyssey Ace made the jump to both the Vita and the PS3, and Nintendo has some new games coming as well, from Final Fantasy Explorers to Monster Hunter 4.

Even within that popularity, there is an even bigger trend that is coming through the genre, and that is the release of enhanced versions of the games that aren’t quite full-blown sequels, but have much more content than the original versions of those games.  Games like God Eater Burst and Ragnarok Odyssey Ace are good examples of this, having released with an expanded story and a slew of new content to explore.

The trend is going in many ways.  North America never got the original versions of Monster Hunter 4 or God Eater, but started with the enhanced editions of those games.  Other franchises, like Ragnarok Odyssey and Soul Sacrifice, have had both their original versions and expanded versions coming to the West.  The most recent entry is what we’ve got for you today.  Here is our official review of Soul Sacrifice Delta!

Continue Reading

2014-06-24-111210

Title: BlazBlue: Chrono Phantasma
Developer: Arc System Works, Aksys Games
Game Type: PlayStation Vita
Download: 3.2 GB
NA Availability: 
Digital Download | Retail
EU Availability: Currently Unavailable

Fighting games have always been very plentiful on the PlayStation Vita.  From the launch, there have been many fighting game series on the Vita, from Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3 to PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale.  There are a lot of different series of fighting games on the Vita, and even more if you include backwards-compatible PSP titles.  There are even series that started on the PSP, as far as portable gaming is concerned, and came to the Vita with its own titles as well.

An example of series like this is the series BlazBlue, that Arc System Works develops.  BlazBlue has seen three main games in its series, all of which have seen light on portable systems.  BlazBlue: Calamity Trigger came to the PSP in the form of Calamity Trigger Portable, and the Continuum Shift games came to the PSP in the form of Continuum Shift II and the PS Vita in the form of Continuum Shift EXTEND.  The series doesn’t stop there, and it continues to show the Vita love and support.

BlazBlue: Chrono Phantasma came only to the PS3 earlier this year.  There had been a conflict upon release, as Aksys Games was refusing to port the game over to the Xbox 360 because of space limitations.  As of just last month, Arc System Works and Aksys Games have brought the game to the PlayStation Vita.  Here is our official review of BlazBlue: Chrono Phantasma.

Continue Reading

2014-07-02-105618

 

Title: Child of Light
Developer: Ubisoft Montreal
Game Type: PlayStation Vita
Download: 1.1 GB
NA Availability: 
Digital Download
EU Availability: Digital Download | Retail

Role-Playing Games are nothing new to the gaming industry, or even to the PlayStation Vita.  There have been many RPG’s, both Western and Japanese, releasing on the system in the past year or so.  There are the likes of Mind Zero, Demon Gaze, Final Fantasy X | X-2 HD Remaster, and more.  Much like the PSP before it, the Vita is slowly becoming a machine filled with Role-Playing Games of all kinds.  That trend isn’t stopping, either, though there are some games coming that aren’t RPG’s as well.

The one type of RPG that isn’t very abundant on the system is Western RPG’s.  What, exactly, is a Western RPG?  That is a question you may be wondering as you read through our review today and play through what we’re reviewing, as we pondered the same question.  Are Western RPG’s merely RPG’s developed in the West?  If a Western Developer developed a game that was exactly like Final Fantasy VII, would it still be considered Western just because it was developed over here instead of in Japan?

A game that really begs the question is Ubisoft Montreal’s creation, Child of Light.  The game has released on many platforms, and has shown its poetic charm across Microsoft, Nintendo, Sony, and PC gamers alike.  Now that the game has become portable with its own version on the PlayStation Vita, how does it stack up?  We have those answers.  Here is our official review of Child of Light.

Continue Reading