PS3 and PS Vita: will games arrive on modern platforms?

PS3 and PS Vita: will games arrive on modern platforms?

PS3 and PS Vita

Following the official statement from Sony regarding the imminent closure of digital stores dedicated to Playstation 3, PS Vita and PSP, an undoubtedly unpleasant situation has arisen. Many users have in fact complained about this choice and have begun to ask themselves some doubts about video games distributed in digital format. The news made a lot of noise, so much so that Sony has decided to retrace its steps, choosing to only suspend the operation of the PSP store. If on the one hand we can rejoice in this choice, on the other hand there could be something else cooking for the future of this software. The issue requires a fairly detailed investigation and having no other official information on Sony's future plans, we must launch into the field of hypotheses, doing our best to try to outline what will be the future policy of the Japanese company regarding the management of digital software. . In particular, we asked ourselves the following question: does Sony want to bring old video games, such as PS3 and PS Vita, back to modern platforms in the future?

Once again: digital vs physical

Games in digital format and physical titles One of the most frequent comments published at the bottom of the news on the subject in question was undoubtedly that on the superiority of the physical format over digital. Many users have lashed out against Sony's decision, defending their sacrosanct digital copies of the games, preciously kept on the shelf in their room. And it is probably thanks to these comments and some articles in the specialized press, that Sony has decided to retrace its steps, deciding to maintain support for the Playstation 3 and PS Vita stores.

We cannot deny it: the physical copy of a video game being a tangible asset, it cannot be stolen in any way against your will. We would like to clarify immediately that this condition is also reserved for owners of digital copies of games purchased on Playstation 3, PS Vita and PSP. In fact, Sony guarantees the possibility of downloading each title purchased in the respective online stores of the various platforms, even after the possible closure of the stores. Therefore, all your purchases will not be lost forever, on the contrary, it will be possible to download them even after years of closure (for example of the PSP store). Furthermore, always in defense of digital copies, we want to emphasize that these are actually "perfect copies", which cannot break or get damaged over time. Even if you treat your video games in a maniacal way, it is likely that over time the physical media will deteriorate, losing the use of that software forever.

Digital on the other hand depends on the choices made by the owner of such content, who may decide to close the servers from one day to the next, but at the same time it does not deteriorate over time and can be always found easily and accessible, without too much difficulty. We perfectly understand the charm and often the pride of owning the original copy of an old title of the very first Playstation, but you must admit that recovering, for example, the original Metal Gear Solid in physical format is a fairly useless expense, if not for collecting. In the digital shop you can find, buy and download the copy for around ten euros, while getting an original and working physical copy is undoubtedly a more difficult and above all expensive undertaking. We do not want to reduce the importance of the advantages linked to physical copies of video games, but we feel obliged to defend the digital market, despite the recent events which have fortunately ended in a positive way.

A problem due to hardware

Sony Playstation 3, the very first 60 GB model In all likelihood, the determining factor for Sony's initial choice was not simply the cost of maintaining the servers dedicated to Playstation 3, PS Vita and PSP games. Sony knows that it has one of the best video game catalogs in its hands, perhaps second only to that of the personal computer for obvious reasons. Having the ability to monetize this content, it will certainly not aim to do so through such old and not very widespread hardware.

Because if on the one hand it is true that it will be increasingly difficult to find physical copies of the old generation games it is equally It is true that it will not be easy to find outdated consoles that are still fully functional. Having a catalog of digital video games usable only on Playstation 3, PS Vita and PSP due to incompatibility with modern platforms, would certainly not lead to a concrete gain for Sony. On the one hand, in fact, few users still own these platforms and, above all, use them frequently. On the other hand, those who want to recover an old console will find it increasingly difficult to find one that is still in good condition. This has led to other avenues being considered, which Sony has probably already done, given its initial intention to close stores, and perhaps we will soon see the first fruits of that choice.

Playstation Now

Official Playstation Now logo Leaving aside the emulation software, particularly popular in the retrogaming sector (also for the Sony platforms mentioned above), there are actually alternative choices that can be taken to monetize the large library of long-standing Playstation video games. Sony is aware that it can do it, taking advantage of the nostalgia effect and the passion of older gamers, as well as being able to intrigue some new buyers who want to recover the unique pearls of the past. For this reason, the iconic video games of the first Playstation, but also the subsequent titles released for the most recent Sony consoles, could soon enjoy a second youth. Even if they are no longer available on Playstation 3, PS Vita and PSP, it would not be better to have them on Playstation 4 and Playstation 5, two widely popular platforms with guaranteed support for the future. How can the great classics return to modern platforms that do not support such software?

The first trivial answer is clearly represented by the Playstation Now service. Through this streaming game subscription it would be possible to access the entire library of Playstation games at a fixed monthly cost. In addition to being a very cost-effective choice for the customer, it could also be an excellent workhorse for Playstation Now in the fight against Microsoft's Game Pass and the excellent backwards compatibility service offered by the competition. Going right to the official site of the Sony service already today you can read the following slogan: "Hundreds of games for PS4</a>, PS3 and PS2, ready to play on demand". In the future, support for PS1, PS Vita and PSP games could also arrive, thus including the entire "legacy" (as Sony likes to call it) of Playstation video games. Without considering the fact that Playstation Now, in addition to being available on Playstation platforms, is also compatible with PC and Mac with the probable arrival of the mobile version for iOS and Android in the future. In short, a move that is certainly more profitable and convenient, than keeping the software available on obsolete consoles such as Playstation 3, PS Vita and PSP already difficult to find in the used market today.

Alternative solutions

Playstation trophies available on PS3, PS4 and PS5 Finally, there are other ways to go, certainly interesting, even if less probable. Playstation 5 (partially also PS4) are consoles powerful enough to be able to play the video games of previous Playstations with a software emulator. With a little work on Sony's part, perhaps we could directly reproduce on our console a dated software like that of the original Final Fantasy VII and why not, even a portable title like Metal Gear Solid Peace Walker.

Recently Sony has also filed an interesting patent on the implementation of trophies automatically in video games in which they have never been officially added by the developers. This could imply that even older titles such as those from the Playstation 2 era or earlier could be somewhat updated to support trophies. And what use would this implementation be if not to bring such video games to next-generation consoles, where hunters of these virtual objectives could rush to unlock them all? As happens with many patents filed, their actual implementation is not to be considered certain, but it certainly represents a hope for the future. We are happy with Sony's counter-move regarding the suspension of digital stores, but we continue to hope that the titles linked to the previous Playstation generations will not remain linked exclusively to the old platforms, but that they can return, probably in a better form than the current one.

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