After compiling our thoughts on last year’s PlayStation Plus titles for the Vita in one complete article on the website, we thought it would be useful (and easier!) to maintain this reflection as we went along this year, rather than trying to cobble all of the information together in one massive article that you probably didn’t read.

If you don’t know by now, PlayStation Plus is Sony’s subscription based service for the PS4’s multiplayer features, but before that was the means to access some great games every month for a minimal subscription fee. You gain multiple titles across the three systems (typically two on each now) but is the service worthwhile just from a Vita perspective? We looked back on the first quarter and evaluated the quality of the Vita games that were part of the Instant Game Collection.

January

As we have now come to expect, since September 2014 the IGC service has become more standardised over both sides of the Atlantic and so both regions received Duke Nukem 3D: Megaton Edition and Woah Dave, and because of Cross-buy we also managed to get The Swapper.

Duke Nukem 3D: Megaton Edition wasn’t perfect by any means and was a port of a twenty year old PC title, but it was incredibly fun, especially in multiplayer. Woah Dave! is a great example of something that is more than the sum of its parts, with hidden depth and charm beyond the simplistic visuals and mechanics. Arguably the true gem in the line-up was The Swapper, with its superb visuals and puzzles and addictive gameplay sure to impress and keep you glued to your Vita.

February

Having been spoilt for choice in previous months, you may feel a little let down to have only received two games in February, but what gems they were! Jaywalkers’s Interactive, a small indie studio have really pushed the boundaries with Kick and Fenwick. With a charming art style and a great mechanic with physics and jumping activated through the recoil of your weapon, you should definitely have picked this up.

That wasn’t all though, last year’s critically acclaimed Rogue Legacy was one of the finest games to hit the system in 2014 and here it is, sitting on the OGC. A rogue-like with excellent presentation, controls and depth this will keep you entertained (or frustrated) for some time.

March

Roll 7 burst onto the scene with the brilliant OlliOlli in early 2014. Almost everyone loved the game when it first launched, but you know something is special when it renders the original obsolete in every way and that’s just the start of OlliOlli2: welcome to Olliwood. With more tricks, manuals, improved visuals, soundtrack and even more addictive than ever before the only way it could be better is if it was given away for free. Which it was. Did you get it?

Dynamighty’s Counterspy – which we awarded the gold for best puzzle/strategy – was the other title this month. A studio comprised of former Pixar employees came to gether to make a game and this was the result. A little short perhaps, but fun nonetheless and well worth a play. One of our favourite Vita experiences.

So, that was the quarter. Seven games, some of them that we really, really loved. All in all we would say that it’s worthy of a B+ and arguably worth the quarterly cost just for OlliOlli2, but given that these were all indie titles we can see where a lot of you may have less than a positive outlook on the offerings. All three months had a title which launched on the service too, is this just a coincidence? A solid start to 2015 then, and we hope it’s a sign of things to come.

  • vongruetz .

    It’s pretty incredible what we get for “free.” CounterSpy and Kick and Fennick are two of my favorite Vita games. Everything has been really solid for the Vita’s free games. Now in May we get Race the Sun, Murasaki Baby, Hohokum, and Unfinished Swan. If only people could realize what an amazing value the Vita really is (even if you shell out an extra $80 on a memory card).

  • Buckybuckster

    It’s been a good year for plus so far. I’ve been able to pick up and experience many a good game through the years. However I really wish they would give us the option to purchase the free plus games we would like to “actually” own. Seems to me it would be a no-brainer move and would fatten the Vita’s coffers.