Sony’s PlayStation Vita has been on the way out for some time now. While the console still sells well in Japan, shifting around 4,000 units each week, Sony itself declared it a legacy platform back in 2015, confirming that first-party support for the handheld would now cease.
That hasn’t stopped other developers from bringing games to the console, of course, as its popularity in Japan continues to make it a viable platform for several studios. Indeed, publisher NIS America recently localised the Vita version of Spike Chunsoft’s Danganronpa V3: Killing Harmony for both the US and European markets at the end of September, but even NISA’s senior associate producer Alan Costa believes the Vita "isn’t really the place to be right now."
"It’s definitely a challenge," Costa told MCV at Gamescom. "The positive of Vita is that the fan base is incredibly hardcore. It’s already pretty established on there in terms of what kind of content they liked, and generally speaking I think you could say it’s really Japanese content, and also indie stuff.
"Obviously we’ve got the Japanese content covered. So we still see that, when we release games on Vita, we have a fanbase that’s there and that they get it and love it. But as a whole, it’s not really the place to be right now."
NIS America president and CEO Takuro Yamashita also confirmed to MCV that Danganronpa V3 and Ys VIII will likely be the last Vita titles from the company that receive a physical release.
"Right now in the market, the PS Vita is obviously on its way out, and the Switch is very, very strong. One thing in particular that makes it strong is that it has that handheld function, so going forward as a company, we want to target PS4, Steam and Switch, because over the next two years, the Switch market is only going to grow and become stronger.
"However, we are also known as a company that’s really hung in there and is still one of the final supporters of the Vita as a platform. We will continue to support it digitally, but there’s a very strong chance that the final physical titles from us for the Vita will be Ys VIII and Danganronpa V3. That’s the strategy."