On the internet, when you criticize anything about Vita or say that it lacks anything, people like to jump you and get crotchity in your general direction. So, sadly, I have to say first that I love my Vita, I own two of them, I have nearly 30 games, and I think it's a great machine. We good? You gonna put the spears away? Okay.
I love Final Fantasy music. Heck, I'd bet most fans of that series list its music as a strength. Theatrhythm: Curtain Call takes over 200 songs from the Final Fantasy franchise's amazing musical library and makes them the foundation of a music game. With three different types of levels, multiple modes, local and online multiplayer, and fan service galore, this is a game I can go back to again and again.
Not for the faint of heart, Shin Megami Tensei IV is a lengthy JRPG in which you will die -- sometimes brutally. It offers dark themes, high customization, mutliple story paths, and one of the best post-apocalyptic settings in any RPG of the last few years.
Etrian Odyssey is a long-running series of Nintendo handheld-exclusive dungeon crawling RPGs. Battles are from a first-person view and pit your highly customized party against brutally tough enemies. If you like to explore mind-bending mazes and walk out wearing your shirt as a tourniquet and/or trying to hold your guts inside yourself, this right here is your jam.
This is a remake of the first Etrian Odyssey, but with an actual story! Hey!
Come on, it's Cave Story on a portable. While the original version is a PC exclusive, the 3DS upgrade allows 3D visuals (I don't just mean with the actual 3D viewing mode on) or a more classic style, the remastered music is nice, and the ways the environments have made the transition from flat to 3D is really impressive. And above all that, I'll say just in case if you've been living in a cave yourself this past decade, Cave Story is just plain fun.
This is a comfort food game -- one that I can unwind with and play any way I want. Heck, chillin' in Animal Crossing was how I made it through a phone call with eBay's shitty customer service last summer (see photo). Thanks, Nintendo!
Will be called a "non-game," by some who take themselves way too sooper cereal, but I can't really try to care. Animal Crossing is a relaxing romp through a cute town. In the 3DS's New Leaf, you take the role of mayor and make all kinds of little changes as time goes by. The best things about it are that you can progress at your own pace and it's not some Facebooky DLC machine. Nintendo could have made this a cocaine app with $500 worth of DLC and a pay-to-advance-faster system, but didn't go that route.
A sequel to what many consider the best Zelda game, A Link Between Worlds feels like Link's freshest adventure in a decade. There's no overbearing tutorials to hold your hand, exploration is encouraged, and the world carries as much charm as you'd expect.
It's the best Final Fantasy game in quite a few years!
While I admittedly haven't finished it yet, I do love this whenever I have time to jump in. I love that it brings back the vertical exploration that we saw in the original Kingdom Hearts and in Birth by Sleep. I felt that was lacking in Kingdom Hearts II, but now I'm talking about other games instead of this one. Bring it back, Heath, bring it back. Hokay...um, oh yeah, really fun battles as per Kingdom Hearts usual, crazy story as also per KH usual, and above all that, you know what my Vita can't do? Play a Kingdom Hearts game.
I know the mainstream will point to the Galaxy games as superior, but Super Mario 3D Land is my favorite Mario platformer since the Super Nintendo days. It has all the charm we've come to expect from gaming's biggest icon, and stages that I finish feeling so good that I feel like they were made just for me. Since I am my favorite person, that works out just fine.
This is the new Pokemon. Where Nintendo has taken its foot off the gas, Level-5 has come out with guns blazing, making a monster capture franchise that is planting roots deep into Japanese culture.
Popularity doesn't always mean greatness, but in this case, there's a reason behind Yokai's runaway success: it's a fine combination of the basics that made Pokemans loveable, while also modifying the formula. If they can bust out some good monster designs in a sequel, this franchise will stick around for a while.