Sony's plan to announce new PlayStation Vita games at its March 9th "Welcome! PlayStation Vita Game Heaven" event in Japan may have hit a snag -- namely, that several of the titles set for reveal have been leaked.
Specifically, PlayStation Vita: Monster Hunter Portable 3 (previously hinted at by PlayStation France's Philippe Cardon), Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Nights, Tales Of Innocence R and Final Fantasy Type-0 HD all went up for pre-order on Play.com this morning. Currently, only the Monster Hunter Portable 3 pre-order page remains active.
Understandably, none of the companies involved -- Sony, Rockstar, Capcom, Square Enix and Namco Bandai -- have stepped forward to confirm that these games are, in fact, part of the "Game Heaven" event. There may still be big Vita games left to announce, though it's tough to imagine what could top Monster Hunter in Japan, and a new Grand Theft Auto title in the West.
It is a curious mix of titles, to say the least. Tales Of Innocence R has already been released on Vita in Japan, leading to speculation that the game is about to be announced for the West. Final Fantasy Type-0, on the other hand, has already enjoyed a successful run on the PSP -- in fact, it was the fourth best selling game in Japan last year. Presumably, it is being upgraded to run on Vita for a possible Western release.
Monster Hunter Portable 3 has an even more convoluted history. It began life as a PSP game (and was the 6th best selling game in Japan in 2011) before being ported to the PlayStation 3 as Monster Hunter Portable 3rd HD, where it managed to score another top spot on Japan's 2011 sales charts, coming in at number 23. The natural assumption is that the Vita game will be a port of the PS3 version. With any luck, the developers at Capcom will be able to support cross-play between the two systems.
That leaves Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Nights as the only truly new game on the list -- but what a game it could be! After all, Rockstar is hiring for a new open-world game -- could this be it? In any case, it's been nearly four years since the last GTA, and players are ravenously awaiting news on Grand Theft Auto 5's release date. If Vice City Nights is for real, and especially if it releases before GTA 5, it could be a blockbuster. More than that, it could sell systems.
The same may not be true of the other titles, including Monster Hunter. Yes, Monster Hunter 3G (itself a port of Wii's Monster Hunter Tri) has been an enormous success in Japan, and the game is widely credited with changing the 3DS's fortunes there. That said, 3DS owners also have Monster Hunter 4 to look forward to -- the allure of which can hardly be overstated. Can a port of a port of a game that has already sold nearly 700,000 copies on portable hardware really be enough to convince Japanese gamers to give Vita a chance? What do you think?
Of course, the possibility remains that none of these titles will be announced at the "Vita Game Heaven" event -- or at all. At least we won't have to wait long to find out.
Ranters, what's your take-away from all of this? Are Tales Of Innocence R and Final Fantasy Type-0 HD good additions to the Vita's Western library? Will PlayStation Vita: Monster Hunter Portable 3 have an impact in Japan? And what do you want from Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Nights? Leave your thoughts in the comments below.
Update: While PlayStation Vita: Monster Hunter Portable 3 appears to be the real deal (the pre-order page is still up), the Play.com screens for the other three games are apparently fakes, as are two of the games, GTA and the Vita port of Final Fantasy Type-0. A Western release for Tales Of Innocence R may be plausible, but there is no evidence to support it at this point.
Thanks to Game Rant commenter GameCollector44 for bringing this to our attention.
Follow me on Twitter @HakenGaken