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How memory card pricing helped kill the Vita | Vita Player

The new storage solution did indeed prevent people from getting homebrew to run on the Vita, for the most part. Eventually, HENkaku was created, but even then, it can only run on Vita and PSTV systems with firmware version 3.30 installed. Which is why systems with that firmware version are selling for a pretty penny online. So, everyone happy then, right?

Not quite.
You see, if you want to take advantage of the regular sales on digital content on the PSN Store, you will need about two 64GB cards if you’re a hardcore gamer. That’ll run you in the neighborhood of $250. Yes, two-hundred and fifty dollars for 128GB of storage. A top-of-the-line computer SSD of that capacity is less than a quarter of that price. And you’ll need the capacity, too, because not only is it a pain to back up your games to your computer, but restoring them requires the Vita to be linked to the PSN account that purchased the games. What will happen when the Vita no longer has access to the authentication servers? Nobody knows. Most likely, however, Sony will simply fade it into the night, pretend nobody bought digital games on the Vita, and move on (much like they are doing with the PSP).

What to do then?
Not much you can do, really. If you’ve got the money, go ahead and buy the memory cards needed for storing all those games. Me, however, I’ll just be moving onto the Switch, thanks. The reality is that most, if not all, the Vita digital games are being re-released on the Switch, and at a more sensible $25 for 64GB, the MicroSD cards that the Switch uses guarantee that, at the very least, I’ll be able to afford to purchase digital games for the lifespan of the system. Bonus? Switch games are not that much bigger than Vita games for the most part. At least the ports of the games that were released on the Vita to begin with (FIFA and other outliers notwithstanding).

So, there you have  it: Vita Memory Cards, a measure put in place to prevent piracy and encourage developers and publishers to release their content on the Vita, were (and still are) so prohibitively expensive that they contributed in no small way to poor system sales and general apathy towards the handheld. Did we mention the 3DS, the Vita’s direct competitor from Nintendo, uses regular SD cards, which are much, much cheaper and readily available? 3DS games are much smaller, too. Go figure.

If the rumors of Sony re-thinking their “never again will we go portable” stance due to the success of the Switch is true, let’s at least hope that they provide the new device with better first-party support. Let’s also hope that third-party developers go head-forward into it. And let’s, for the love of all that’s holy, hope that Sony realize that stupid, overpriced proprietary storage is a detriment to their products.

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How memory card pricing helped kill the Vita – Vita Player – the one-stop resource for PS Vita owners.