To go along with Black Ops 2’s release is that of it’s smaller handheld counterpart, Black Ops: Declassified. It was supposed to be the game that drew “hardcore” gamers to the Vita. It was supposed to save it. It probably could have, had it been pawned off to the right developer; say Ready at Dawn who did incredible handheld things with the God of War franchise.
Instead it went to Nihilistic, the same guys who completely butchered Resistance on the Vita and – if we’re going to hate on them for history – were the guys behind Blizzard’s bit of phantomware, Starcraft Ghost.
As expected, by those who’ve been following the game – whether out of morbid curiosity or a genuine interest in a handheld Call of Duty, it’s ended up being quite terrible. According to Metacritic, it’s currently sitting on a pretty terrible 31 on Metacritic, with most reviewers unconvinced that it’s even a game.
Even the Official PlayStation Magazine had terrible things to say, quipping that Declassified is “A cynical grab for gullible gamer Christmas cash made to coincide with Vita’s first festive period, this COD shouldn’t just be declassified; it should be erased from existence.”
Sony’s put a lot of hope in Call of Duty for the Vita; which makes is complete lack of quality all the more inexcusable. Metro pretty much summed it up in their review:
“But the very worst thing about Declassified is that in reporting its failure we feel like we’re writing an obituary for the PS Vita itself. With next to nothing else on the horizon it’s now almost impossible to imagine the format recovering from this disaster. The PS Vita is an excellent portable console but the way it’s been treated by Sony and the other publishers has seemed almost purposefully self-destructive, and we fear this is the final straw.”
Is this it? With little else on the horizon for the system – outside of charming little downloadable games – is the Vita pretty much dead?