It’s been a rocky few years for the Vita, but it seems Sony is closing the coffin on the system’s software future.
Per a message received and reported on by Kotaku, Sony told developers today that they are shutting down production of physical Vita games. While it was unlikely any new games would be released on the system in the future, it also means that reprints on older games aren’t going to happen.
According to Kotaku’s story, Sony intends to keep the PSN store of Vita games up, but the existing Vita carts out there right now are the last ones out there. If you ever wanted a physical copy of Danganronpa or Persona 4 Golden, you might want to get one before they become rare.
The Vita was released in 2011, with a western release in America a few months later, for a price competitive with its major competition, the 3DS. Sony was eventually undercut by Nintendo, which slashed the price of its own handheld, and the Vita lost mindshare and momentum in the handheld race. The system managed to find a lot of success with certain types of titles and indie games, but high prices for proprietary storage and Sony’s reluctance to place internal developer resources on the system ultimately defined its quiet life until the end.
Fans of the Vita are adamant that no system has ever quite fit that same niche and will likely remember it fondly as a game with unique titles that weren’t adequately represented elsewhere.
I am surprised Sony is only now ending cart production, but I would guess there’s no rush for a successor system to move over manufacturing lines. The PlayStation 4 is such a success that the Vita likely does not weigh heavily on anyone’s mind.