Sony’s PlayStation Vita has one foot in the grave. In a recent report from Kotaku, Sony’s American and European branches plan to end production of physical Vita games by the close of fiscal year 2018.
According to the publication, Sony’s 2018 fiscal year ends on March 31, 2019.
Kotaku learned of the plans in a message to developers that was later confirmed by a Sony spokesperson.
The message to developers asked that all Vita product code requests be submitted by June 28, 2018, and that final purchase orders be placed no later than February 15, 2019.
Sony’s handheld has been fighting an uphill battle from the start. By the time it debuted in 2011 (it didn’t land on US shores until a few months later in early 2012), smartphones – and to a lesser extent, tablets – had already staked their claim in the mobile gaming space. Competition with Nintendo’s 3DS didn’t help, nor did the arrival of the Nintendo Switch last year.
As Former President and CEO of Sony Computer Entertainment America (SCEA) Jack Tretton put it, the Vita was a great machine that simply arrived too late.
Worse yet, Sony announced earlier this year that it plans to remove PlayStation Vita (and PlayStation 3) titles from its PS Plus monthly games line-up starting next year. We also heard last month that Sony may kill the Vita entirely sometime this year although that rumor hasn’t been confirmed yet.