It's already been announced that the Vita will be fully backwards compatible with all PSP, minis, and psone original games for download on PSN, so it's time to start planning ahead. For people that didn't have a PSP before Vita, backwards compatibility will be especially sweet as there really are a lot of games worth playing. In this feature I tried to pick out some of the best PSP games across different genres that would fill the void until Vita starts getting it's own selection going. So without further ado, here's five PSP games your Vita's gotta have.
If you're going to buy a bad-ass game system, you're going to need a bad-ass game. Nothing fits that description quite like God Of War. Honestly you could buy this game or the first (Chains of Olympus) and have a really good time. This game just felt more refined to me and had more content. The boss fights also were a bit better especially the ending by far. The only thing that bothered me about this game is the camera zooming out too far, but maybe that won't be such a problem on Vita's slightly bigger screen. If you didn't play these they're a must have for Vita. The graphics were nearly on par with the PS2 versions too, so there's no doubt they're going to look good on Vita. I've always been a huge God of War nerd, so there's not doubt these games top my list.
Ruin is shaping up to be a pretty cool RPG launch title on the Vita, but it seems like it's going to be more of a Dungeon Siege style game. I'm more of a Final Fantasy type myself when it comes to RPG games. So if you feel a little left out, theres a PSP game just for you. A few actually. The one that you have to get though, and I mean HAVE to get it you havent played it, is Crisis Core. It's simply one of the greatest portable 3-D RPG experiences you can have. The cutscenes are both emotional and epic and follow a story that will suck you in from start to end. The graphics also look fantastic on the PSP and I can only imagine them to look all the better on Vita's OLED screen. If you've already enjoyed this masterpiece, then point your Vita at Tactics Ogre: Let Us Cling Together. The name's kind of odd, but if you enjoyed the old games, this one's a must buy. Both of these are great choices for any RPG fan.
Racing fans don't have a whole lot to look forward to in the Vita's launch line-up other than Wipeout 2048. I have no doubt that game is going to be great, but I'm a car fan at heart, and need something with all four wheels on the ground. Midnight Club: LA Remix is by far the best street racing game made on the PSP, though i'll tell you right here in the beginning to look elsewhere immediately if you can't stand load times. This one has a lot of them, but your time waiting is well justified. With nearly all the cars and customization options of the PS2 version it's a must buy. It's an open world too, so once you've made your car a work of art you can take it straight out to the streets and roll around in style. It has a huge track list too with some really good music, not to mention how great the cars themselves sound. If that kind of game just isn't your style, Burnout Legends is probably the next place to look. It's by far the most action packed racing you can get on the PSP, and is no-doubt just as fun as it's console counter parts. For Simulation racing, check out Gran Turismo. It got a lot of hate because it didn't really have a story mode, but as a portable game I didn't really consider that such an issue. The amount of content in the game was more important to me, and Turismo has heaps of it. Go with any of these and you'll get your portable adrenaline fix.
Open world games on the PSP don't get much better than Liberty City Stories. The story (at least to me) was better than the one in Vice City Stories. So that's why this one got top choice. They're both great though and look fantastic. You can explore the cities in their entirety, just like any console GTA game. Driving around causing havoc in either city is a blast, and all the better on a portable. The controls still feel a little wonky to me, but that was about the only complaint I've ever had with them. You won't get a better gangster fix than with these games. Grand Theft Auto: China Town Wars got better reviews than either of these, but I've never really been a fan of the over-the-top perspective it uses. It's extremely good, don't get me wrong, just styled a little more like the older GTA's.
In this feature I tried pick games that would cover a wide range of genres. The horror genre is one that's hard to fill on a portable. Silent Hill: Shattered Memories, is one that accomplishes this in spades. For me, it was almost scarier than some of the console games. It's probably the only way you're going to get scared on the Vita for a while, until I'm sure a Silent Hill game will be made. For now though, this game will keep you scared for sometime to come. Silent Hill: Origins is also a choice, but I would steer clear of it. The controls were terrible, and it just pretty well sucked. :P
PSP had more than enough great games to grace the Vita, here are some that weren't on my list. Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker, Daxter, The Star Wars Battlefield games, Loco Rocco 2, Syphon Filter: Dark Mirror, Resistance Retribution, Ratchet & Clank: Size Matters, Field Commander, and many more.