The PS Vita won’t launch in the US or UK until 2012. The wait between the Japan and US/UK release will probably be a few months. This seems reasonable to most, except for the impatient gamer. The only way they can get the Vita in 2011 is to import, but is it even worth importing? Here are a few things to consider.
The Vita’s price is reasonable, but the import price won’t be. Back in February it would have cost you 448.90 to import a 3DS from Play Asia, that’s ridiculous especially considering today’s price drop. You can expect the PS Vita to cost around the same; since it’s suggested retail is $249.99 (like the 3DS at launch). There’s no doubt the Vita is worth more than a 3DS—but still is it worth paying almost $500 to get it a few months in advance?
The answer to this question depends on the games available at launch. If there are no killer apps, then it’s pointless to import. If Uncharted: Golden Abyss is a launch title it would make the Vita an instant import for many gamers. Gravity also looks interesting (see video below).
Although, there’s the issue of buying a system with games that are in a language that you don’t understand. Some gamers would never dream of doing this since they want to absorb everything. In my opinion it depends on the genre, if it’s story driven it shouldn’t be imported unless you can understand what’s going on. The Uncharted games are story driven on the PS3—but I’m not expecting anything groundbreaking from the Vita version… plot wise. The action is what truly matters.
The great thing about the Vita is if you import it you aren’t going to be forced to play Japanese games forever since it isn’t region locked. The same can’t be said about importing the 3DS earlier this year. This could be the deciding factor for some, basically you’re just paying a premium to get it early and once it launches in your region, it’ll be like a normal Vita.
So back to the original question, is the PS Vita worth importing? For me the answer is yes, it’s the PSP I always wanted Sony to make—but for others the answer will be no. So what do you think, will you import one?