PlayStation Store: Sony withdraws controversial decision

PlayStation Store: Sony withdraws controversial decision

PlayStation Store

Because of a vaguely worded statement by Jim Ryan, CEO of Sony Interactive Entertainment, fans of the Playstation Portable feared that as of today it would no longer be possible to buy PSP games digitally. After Sony announced at the end of March that it would finally take the Playstation Stores on PS3, PS Vita and PSP offline in the summer, the company rowed back a short time later after massive criticism. The stores on PS3 and PS Vita should remain online, only the "shopping functions for PSP" should be discontinued on July 2nd, 2021.

Recommended editorial content Here you will find external content from [PLATFORM]. To protect your personal data, external integrations are only displayed if you confirm this by clicking on "Load all external content": Load all external content I agree that external content can be displayed to me. This means that personal data is transmitted to third-party platforms. Read more about our privacy policy . External content More on this in our data protection declaration. Now it turned out: This only meant the in-game stores of the PSP games, not the availability of the games themselves. Because the software can still be purchased via the Playstation Stores on PS3 and PS Vita. Users of the gaming forum ResetEra have also discovered an entry on the British version of the Playstation homepage that explicitly confirms this once again.

Only PS4 and PS5</a> games are available on the Playstation Store website, so for PS3 and PS Vita software you have to go to the store on the respective device. The own store for the Playstation Portable no longer exists since March 2016, so you can only buy PSP software via the store on Vita and PS3 and then transfer it to the handheld via USB cable. In addition to digital versions of some retail games, there are also 35 games for the PSP that were only released as downloads and that would no longer be available without the Playstation Store. You can find the full list here.

Still playing on the PSP? If so, on which model? Let us know in the comments!

So What’s Wrong With The PlayStation Store?



This week, PlayStation was in the news as many smaller developers started to speak out about the process of how convoluted it was to work with Sony to get their games spotlighted, put on sale or promoted in general, which leads to dramatically lower sales on PlayStation consoles than on Xbox or Nintendo, despite the much higher install base.

Some of this is stuff going on in the background, publisher support staff not being assigned properly, an approval process with limited slots to put your game on sale. But the sales disparity is pretty weird, and often extremely dramatic. So I wanted to surf around the store to see if there was some sort of UI/discoverability issue inherent to the store itself.

Suffice to say yeah, I think it’s definitely at least part of the problem.

Booting up my PS5 and going to the store tab yields the following browsing experience:

  • The first thing you see is a giant background ad for a game I already own, Ratchet and Clank. Below that, the first column is “Must See” games, again, Ratchet and Clank, but also Demon’s Souls and Final Fantasy VII.
  • Below that, “What’s Hot” is Scarlet Nexus, Doom Eternal, Chivalry 2 and Metro Exodus.
  • Below that, pre-orders for the Demon Slayer game, Madden and NEO.
  • Below that, featured PlayStation console exclusive games (again, led by Ratchet and Clank, which I already own).
  • Below that, DLC for my existing games, Avengers, Destiny, Fortnite, etc.
  • It’s pretty clear I’m not finding any indie games on this page, so I go over to the next tab “Collections.”
  • Here we have a few categories. Monthly Picks and Editors choices have a lot of mainstream games in them, interspersed with some indies, but only a handful. And finally, Collections is where you discover the actual PlayStation Indies category, a portion of PlayStation that is headed by Shuhei Yoshida himself after leaving his former role.
  • The top row are games you have definitely heard a ton about already, Disco Elysium, Kena: Bridge of Spirits and Bugsnax. Elsewhere there’s Cuphead, Fall Guys (which was uh, just bought by Epic), Spirit Farer. In total there are only 43 games here, which makes up the entire indie section.
  • Xbox


    So, how does this compare to Xbox, where many indie devs are reporting better sales?

  • The Xbox store main page does feature well-known games at the front. Scarlet Nexus, Mass Effect Legendary Edition, then category sections for new games, free games, and Game Pass titles.
  • But here’s where things diverge. Clicking on “top new games” takes you a section that is immediately headlined by smaller titles. Walden, The Procession to Cavalry, Treasure Hunter Simulator, Super Destronaut. Pretty much all of these games in the top new section are small indie games, with nary a mainstream one to be found. Top free games and top paid games have more mainstream hits in them, but they are sections featured after top new games.
  • If you go to just the general Games homepage, not the store page, here too you will find a ton of indies. The game demos section wants you to try out Mythic Ocean, Ars Regia, Clone Drone in the Danger Zone and Deathtrap Dungeon. The new games section has Walden, Super Destronaut and the others that were already featured in the first new games tile. Even the “coming soon” section is featuring games like Police Stories, Imagine Earth and Beasts of Maravilla Island.
  • How many of these have you even heard of? Almost none of them? Well, that’s how discoverability works.

    There is a clear difference in the way these two stores are set up, which in addition to whatever backend problems PlayStation is having with indies, has to contribute to the sales disparity frustration. For the most part, PlayStation seems like it quarantines most indie games into a small section of the site you have to hunt down. But Xbox is integrating them into all layers of the store, and they’re everywhere you look once you get off the central landing page.

    Not saying this is the “fix” by itself here, but I definitely think it needs to be examined if Sony has any interest in solving this issue.

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