5. Thomas Was Alone
One gripe some folks had with the PC version of Thomas Was Alone was the lack of native controller support. On the Vita, that would no longer be the case, and gamers would be treated to an incredible puzzle platformer rife with pleasing minimalistic graphics, an amazing soundtrack, and superbly rewarding gameplay. Given the intuitive gameplay of this lovely title, touchscreen controls could very well be an enjoyable addition, too. Thomas Was Alone is a heartwarming, thoughtful experience from start to finish that just gets better the further you get into it. This is an experience that’s both touching and personal, and it would be quite spectacular to witness it on a handheld like the Vita.
4. Mutant Mudds
Renegade Kid’s beloved 2D gem Mutant Mudds has found great success on the 3DS and PC, and it's set to launch on Wii U next year. While that’s all great news, the 3DS version of Mutant Mudds really proved that the game felt right at home on a handheld device. We’ve seen how great other old school-inspired titles like Retro City Rampage can look on the Vita’s screen, so it goes without saying that this action-platformer would be a great fit for the portable. With a sequel already announced by Renegade Kid, now would be the perfect time to bring Mutant Mudds over to the Vita, complete with those frustratingly amazing Grannie levels.
VVVVVV could very well be a modernist gamer’s worst nightmare. Why? Because it’s an 8-bit game with chiptunes and a brutal level of challenge. But for those of us who aren’t pansies and enjoy a nice throwback to the good ol’ days of gaming, VVVVVV is a beautifully satisfying amalgamation of welcome difficulty, pleasing aesthetics, and rad music. The game could easily be considered one of the best, most memorable indie games ever created. Already VVVVVV has enjoyed success on the 3DS, and it could potentially achieve even more acclaim on the Vita. If it does happen, let’s hope no games journalists make a headline joke tying the game’s title to the fact that the Vita starts with the letter V. Because that would be lame.
2. Superbrothers Sword and Sworcery EP
Superbrothers Sword and Sworcery EP was a critical success on iOS platforms, and it was finally ported to the PC a few months ago, opening the door wide open for a much larger audience to enjoy it. Capybara Games should open that door just a little bit wider and let the Vita-owning crowd in for good measure. While there’s no denying that the iOS version is stellar, it would be great to see Sword and Sworcery EP on an actual dedicated gaming portable. With the Vita’s large touchscreen, as well as its traditional D-pad and face buttons, it would offer the best of both worlds, and gamers could enjoy the game like so many iPhone owners did or reap the rewards of having a traditional button layout.
Before it launched, Fez was heralded as one of the most anticipated (and most prolonged) indie games in development. At the time of its launch, the game received positive reviews for its colorful pixel graphics, enjoyable soundtrack, and thought-provoking gameplay, which actually required players to jot down notes to solve the more fiendish puzzles. Fez is quite a remarkable title and it's really unlike anything we’ve played in recent memory. It's a triumphant effort that showcases what a brilliant mind can do when it sets out to create a memorable experience. How sweet would it be if that memorable experience and all of its note-taking awesomeness landed on the Vita? Yeah, it'd be pretty damn sweet.
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If there's one thing that titles such as Retro City Rampage and Sound Shapes have proven, it's that having portable indie games to take with you on the go (or play in the comfort of your bed) is awesome. The Vita may not exactly be bursting with content, but there are a handful of indie titles that are certainly worthwhile. That's why it would be great for Vita owners if more devs released their content on the platform, and that's exactly why Sony's handheld would be a good fit for some indie gems that are already quite popular. Here are 10 awesome indie titles that the Vita seriously needs.
Spelunky is heralded as one of the most impressive 2D rogeulikes to come along in recent memory, and rightfully so. The fact of the matter is that this game will cause you to lose a bit of your sanity, but at the same time, it’ll push you to continue trying for the sole purpose of getting just a little bit further with every subsequent play-through. The game originally exploded onto the scene as a freeware PC title, garnering massive critical acclaim and a widespread positive reaction among indie enthusiasts, retro game fans, and sadistic gamers, and it’s now available on Xbox Live Arcade with revamped visuals and new modes. A Vita version would be awesome, and if you saw someone on the bus cursing like a sailor as they played a game on their Sony handheld, you’d probably know they were playing Spelunky.
9. Defender’s Quest
The Vita's touchscreen interface is ideal for tower defense games, so why have we not been treated to more entries in this superb genre? More importantly, why isn't Defender's Quest on the Vita? Not only is that game easily one of the best entries in the genre of 2012 (if not the absolute best), but it would be a hell of a game on the handheld space. Playing Defender's Quest on PC is really entertaining, but given how quick each level can be, it would be an ideal choice for traveling Vita owners. And because it's so easy to get hooked to the fast-paced gameplay of this indie title, it can also satisfy the needs of individuals who are looking to play for long stretches of time.
Extremely challenging, pleasantly old school, and incredibly entertaining, La-Mulana is a 2D action-adventure game that harks back to classics like Metroid. The game is rife with fun platforming and exploration gameplay, and it’s sure to appeal to indie gamers looking for some retro-style fun. Specifically, La-Mulana could easily be considered a NES fan’s dream, and it would be a great addition to the Vita alongside Retro City Rampage, a NES-inspired title in its own right.
7. Cthulhu Saves the World
The PSP is home to many RPGs. Hell, the system is still getting RPGs even now that the Vita is Sony’s primary focus in the handheld space. So it would only be fitting for the newer device to have some reputable RPGs of its own, and indie developer Zeboyd Games’ brand of witty and humorous titles would be perfect for that. Breath of Death VII: The Beginning and Penny Arcade’s On the Rain-Slick Precipice of Darkness 3 are great candidates, but we think something like Cthulhu Saves the World, which is easily Zeboyd’s most hilarious RPG, would be the top choice. At about eight hours in length, it’s not the longest entry in the genre, but as a PlayStation Network download for the Vita, it would be a worthwhile purchase for any RPG aficionados looking for some handheld turn-based action.
6. FTL: Faster Than Light
While it's cool that the Vita can play games that are on par with PlayStation 3 software in terms of scope, a lot of folks dig portable gaming systems for their bite-sized offerings. FTL: Faster Than Light would be a truly incredible Vita game, and its spaceship simulation and management gameplay would shine if proper touchscreen integration was fully featured. Most people who play FTL never really know if they'll actually make it to the end, but that doesn't stop them from dumping countless hours into the game.