The PS Vita's upcoming slate of games is incredibly strong. Fan-favourite franchises are nestled in among new IP from established developers - some just months away, some scheduled deep into 2012.
Intense action games and slow-burn RPGs, single-player and multiplayer efforts, gorgeous high-fidelity visuals and hyper-stylised numbers: there's something for almost every gaming taste.
With so much to choose from, it's going to be difficult keeping track of the most promising releases, so we've gone ahead and whittled them all down to a modest ten that we cannot wait to get our hands on.
Uncharted: Golden Abyss
By Bend Studio - out February 22nd
An obvious choice, I grant you. If you're not getting amped up about a new Uncharted, then turn your badge in now. You're no longer welcome in the "Gamer Club"... which... I've just invented.
It's unlikely that Uncharted: Golden Abyss is going to set the world on fire in terms of innovation, yet we'll settle for the series's trademark explosive action and well-paced storyline.
Uncharted: Golden Abyss is full of the franchise's beloved characters (and a few fresh faces), and is astonishingly good looking. It's the perfect showpiece for demonstrating to friends exactly why you've shelled out £250 for new hardware.
By Bigbig Studios - out February 22nd
On a similar note, we'll be certain to whip out Little Deviants whenever our mates are around to highlight the ridiculous number of control methods the PS Vita has. Again, purely to make them well jealous.
Well, not "purely", because from our hands-on impressions of it last October, it's a bundle of fun in its own right. Sure, the mini-games don't have the kineticism of a WarioWare or the craziness of a Bishi Bashi, but they're highly polished and ask you to wield the system in a multitude of novel ways.
Little Deviants is also set to be one of the cheaper games at launch, thus ensuring that high scores are compared in playgrounds and around office water coolers the world over come February.
By Studio Liverpool - out February 22nd
Extreme-G? Pah! F-Zero? Don't make me laugh! G-Surfers? A deep cut, bro, but nuh-uh. The king of futuristic racers is without question WipEout.
The game that helped launch the original PlayStation back in 1995 with its ultra-clean neon future and anti-gravity racing is the fastest, most exciting, most tonally evocative title within its genre.
And it's back for another hardware launch, exploring the roots of this exhilarating fictional sport. We can't wait to zip through the converted city streets and skyways of an alternative earth, in what's being pitched as the ultimate evolution of Formula 1.
Memorising the exact positions of speed boosts on courses, lining up race-winning rocket shots and twitch-turning our way through Phantom class competitions? Yeah, yeah, we'll have some of that.
By Irrational Games - out 2012
Legendary game designer Ken Levine has come out and said that this won't be a port of BioShock Infinite, nor will it be a re-release of either of the first two titles. Other than that, though, details are scarce.
Which is exactly what's so exciting about BioShock on Vita - it could be quite literally anything.
That's not strictly true: it'll probably be a first-person shooter. Exactly where and when it's set, or who its characters are, however, is anyone's guess.
There's still an awful lot that could be done within Rapture, first off - imagine a game set just weeks before its downfall for example. Or perhaps it'll resolve a few unanswered questions, like what happened to Brigid Tenenbaum after the events of Minerva's Den? I can hardly contain myself.
By Fun Bits Interactive - out February 22nd
Fun Bits Interactive has a history of producing funny, off-the-wall titles, which isn't surprising seeing as many of its team come from Titan Studios, the company behind Fat Princess.
Escape Plan looks set to position this new-ish company as an early leader in the field of quirky Vita downloadable games. It features film noir visual design, a silent movie-era soundtrack, and is spattered with jet black blood from liberal doses of comic violence.
In this puzzle-heavy adventure, you'll be tasked with guiding Laarg and Lil - the Laurel and Hardy of weirdly misshapen goth blobs - to freedom.
It's been a very long time since we've seen a deliberately paced, cerebral action game like this, which is more than enough to pique our interest.
By Ubisoft - out February 22nd
The reviews are already out for the armless one's return to 2D, and, boy, oh, boy, are they positive. Rayman Origins is being hailed as one of the best platformers of recent years, and, in some people's opinion, one of the best platformers ever.
So, when it comes to Sony's latest handheld, we can expect the full home console outing, plus perhaps a couple of bonus features or additional modes.
The UBIart Framework, which was partly created to ensure porting to other formats is a doddle, will mean that every luscious cell of animation is intact, and every hand-drawn stroke is as crisp as the ones found on the big boy machines.
More hardcore than one might initially expect, Rayman Origins on Vita is one we're really looking forward to. This little beauty is guaranteed to test our gaming prowess to the limits when it's released later this year.
Silent Hill: Book Of Memories
by Konami - out 2012
As a long-time Silent Hill fan, my initial reaction to the announcement of Book Of Memories was one of nausea. This was quickly followed by anger. How dare they make it a co-operative online, action-heavy romp? How dare they bring back Pyramid Head?
But, stick with me on this. You see, my worries subsided when Konami started talking about how it wasn't aiming for the typically tense Silent Hill experience.
Instead, it's a title within the same universe that borrows elements of the latter's aesthetic but little more. It's also likely to be non-canon, since it allows you to create your own character and use the eponymous tome to alter the town's history.
Samurai & Dragons
By Sega - out 2012
You read it right. Finally, a development team has the guts to jam the world's most awesome warriors together with the fiercest overgrown lizards.
"What's that? A dragon is terrorising the village? Well, check it out, I'm a motherloving samurai!" is the kind of conversation we have – until now – only dreamed about. Sega is making this fantasy come true, and we couldn't be happier.
The game looks pretty good, too. It's essentially a mixture of world-building strategy, card collecting, and action-RPG dungeon-stomping for up to four players. If it resonates with a large enough audience, it could become a serious contender to Capcom's Monster Hunter throne.
Also: samurai and dragons. In one game. Excite!
Persona 4: The Golden
By Atlus - out 2012
Persona 2's re-release on PSP was solid. Persona 3's second outing was superb. Naturally, then, the expanded and improved Persona 4: The Golden is high up on the list that we've labelled "Want, WANT, WANT!!!".
Set to include brand-new characters, more Personas and outfits, and a multiplayer feature in which you can recruit others as they head into the game's dungeon areas, this isn't just a faithful translation: it's set to be the definitive version of one of the most critically acclaimed JRPGs of the last decade.
Persona 4: The Golden is a flagship of the genre with an intriguing and truly mature storyline, and we're getting pumped at the mere thought of it getting the English language port it so rightfully deserves.
By Double Eleven - out 2012
It's a pity LittleBigPlanet on PSP never really took off as well as the PlayStation 3 versions. It was a game with a lot of potential, yet the limitations of the hardware forced the developer to make heavy cuts, including the excision of one of its most appealing elements: the multiplayer mode.
That won't be the case for its debut on Vita, mind. We can expect multiple Sackboys, a comprehensive physics engine, and shared content between it and LittleBigPlanet 2. This is the full "Play, Create, Share" experience we want, available anywhere we happen to be.
Even more importantly than that, LittleBigPlanet will make use of all the new gubbins in Sony's prized portable powerhouse, further expanding the building choices available to those wonderful level creators, which the rest of us leech off for remakes of World 1-1 and other insane / free content.