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Sony Opens PSP Store on the PC

Zonk posted more than 6 years ago | from the because-mac-users-don't-own-psps dept.

Games 25

GamesIndustry.biz is reporting that Sony has opened up a new downloads store for the PlayStation Portable. Store.playstation.com interfaces with your existing PSN network id, and will allow purchase and download of games, trailers, and demos to your Sony handheld. The company is already clarifying that this 'won't kill the UMD format', and that this is just an alternative method to obtain content. Darren Carins, head of online marketing for SCEE, was quoted as saying "The UMD business is still good for us and our publishers. It's still a burgeoning market, and we're still selling a large number of PSPs on a weekly basis, so there are a large number of new people coming into the market. I don't think that this would give us any cause for concern over UMD, I think they sit very well together. When you talk about the more casual games, pick-up-and-play games, you would definitely want to put them through the Store rather than have disc production, in to retail, and so on."

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25 comments

The Fact they had to defend UMD (2, Insightful)

Apple Acolyte (517892) | more than 6 years ago | (#21437837)

signals to me that the format is in deep trouble. If they didn't feel this move could be interpreted as being a negative for UMD, they wouldn't have defended it.

Re:The Fact they had to defend UMD (4, Insightful)

stormguard2099 (1177733) | more than 6 years ago | (#21437985)

or maybe it's obvious to people that something like this could compete with UMD so they decided to go ahead and answer the question in everyone's mind.

Re:The Fact they had to defend UMD (1)

hedwards (940851) | more than 6 years ago | (#21438013)

I agree, I never understood why anybody would be willing to pay for a second copy of a movie just to watch it on the tiny screen that the PSP has.

It further confused me because the price of the UMD movies wasn't a very good price. I still can't figure out why a person would want to pay for multiple copies of the same movie, when except from a few personal favorites, most people aren't likely to watch a movie more than a couple of times.

Decent quality, no transcoding hassle (1)

Nursie (632944) | more than 6 years ago | (#21438189)

OTOH I never bought any movie twice, and I tended to buy trashy UMD movies second hand anyway.

Re:The Fact they had to defend UMD (1)

sanosuke76 (887630) | more than 6 years ago | (#21439739)

I can see Gamefly'ing them if you're going to be on a trip or something. But that's about it.

I have, however, seen UMD video put to good use to keep vendors' kids quiet and entertained at gun shows.

Kill UMD? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21439797)

How can you kill UMD when it's already dead?

Captcha: expire

Re:The Fact they had to defend UMD (1)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 6 years ago | (#21439835)

"signals to me that the format is in deep trouble. If they didn't feel this move could be interpreted as being a negative for UMD, they wouldn't have defended it."

Either that or they know that people are confusing UMD Movies and UMD Games...

Eliminates need for PS3 to buy PSP content. (4, Informative)

Devir (671031) | more than 6 years ago | (#21438065)

What t hey're doing is not a kill to UMD. It's to allow people to purchase, d/l and store PSP content on the PC instead of forcing consumers to invest in a PS3.

In all it is a good marketing move to foster more consumer trust and allow some consumer choice.

In the future more PSOne games will be available for the PSP download service. Some are very large (FF7-9) and would require considerable space for permanant storage.

UMD disks hold 1.8 gigs of data. The MEmory Stick the PSP uses holds 4 gigs max at $50-80 per card. It's simply not cost effective to replace UMD with these "yet". It you could d/l PSP games directly to the memory stick you could fit 2-3 games. Even at a discounted price, we're breaking even, or exceeding cost of the UMD.

THe benefit though, is you have fast game read times, fast write, and a smaller footprint than the UMD disks. A basic cary case could now hold 10-20 memory sticks each holding roughly 2 games giving you the capacity to store roughly 40 games in a small cary case, versus the 4 UMD disks current travel cases can carry. Added benefit is your save games can be stored directly on the memory stick with the game.

Ok after some thought, eliminating UMD altogether is a good idea "if" they lower memory stick prices considerably.

Faster load times, bigger storage capacity (4 gigs vs UMD 1.8) directly writable, not affected by scratches, smaller... it's just all good.

Either way you read it, demise of UMD, boost to memory stick, elimination for the need of a PS3... It's a good move on Sony's part. Pipe dream, but maybe they're becoming more consumer friendly.

Re:Eliminates need for PS3 to buy PSP content. (1)

ucblockhead (63650) | more than 6 years ago | (#21439585)

I have an 8 gig memory stick for mine. I'm not sure what the overall limit is, but memory sticks currently max out at 8 gb.

Re:Eliminates need for PS3 to buy PSP content. (1)

Devir (671031) | more than 6 years ago | (#21444043)

I've only ever been able to find 4 gig sticks. It's good news to hear there are 8 gig sticks floating around. Problem being they're still expensive.

Halfway writing i realized that while expensive, memory sticks are the way to go media wise. UMD is slow, bulky, prone to scratches, case cracking and all sorts of other bad things. It requires moving parts, which eventually break.

Circuits burn out eventually, but they're still better than the slow to load UMD disks. Besides, i could carry quite a few games with me in a compact carry case instead of needing that rather large GameShark Aluminum PSP briefcase.

Re:Eliminates need for PS3 to buy PSP content. (1)

ucblockhead (63650) | more than 6 years ago | (#21459035)

I got mine at Best Buy in August. Yeah, it was expensive, but I was facing a long plane ride followed by a long drive with a five year old. A PSP with 8 gb worth of movies was a godsend.

I wish I could get more games on sticks...It'd be a lot more convenient.

Re:Eliminates need for PS3 to buy PSP content. (2, Informative)

sanosuke76 (887630) | more than 6 years ago | (#21439771)

Don't forget battery life. It costs more electricity to spin the disc than to read the memory card, which translates directly into longer battery life for memory stick based titles.

Re:Eliminates need for PS3 to buy PSP content. (1)

Tim Browse (9263) | more than 6 years ago | (#21440363)

UMD disks hold 1.8 gigs of data. The MEmory Stick the PSP uses holds 4 gigs max at $50-80 per card. It's simply not cost effective to replace UMD with these "yet"

Assuming most PSP games need 1.8Gb of data. A lot of UMDs are not nearly full, and ones that are may just be duplicating data across the disk (to reduce seeking, which hits the battery, and is slow).

About time! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21438113)

The PSP has been begging for this since it was created. I only recently got one myself, but the fact that the PS3 has been able to get content like this while the PSP hasn't just boggled me. Where were my PS1 downloadable ports?

Almost There (2, Insightful)

lansirill (244071) | more than 6 years ago | (#21438121)

Well, it took them long enough to make the store available to people without a PS3, but I'm glad they're finally offering this content without the $400-600 access point. I was very, very excited when I heard about being able to play PS1 games on the PSP around a year ago, less excited when I found out you needed a PS3, and completely disappointed when I saw the title selection.

I would be thrilled if they would put a reasonably complete selection of old PS1 titles up on this store. I doubt it will ever happen, but I would gladly spend $5 to download an old PS1 game I enjoyed rather than have to balance my ability to play old games on my PSP without (any new) risk with the ability to play the new games and once again risking a a brick. A boy can dream, right?

Is all the TMing needed? (0, Offtopic)

Tobias Lobster (169833) | more than 6 years ago | (#21438277)

I've had a quick look at the site and more than anything it makes me want to switch to a font with no TM character - 24 of them on one page is at least 23 too many. Okay Sony, I get it, you've trademarked all this stuff. What do you want? A trophy? A cake?

I guess it's a similar problem with the PSP itself - before playing a game I have to sit through splash screens telling me who developed the game, who published it, what technology it used (again, all with little TMs, (C)s and (R)s) - all I want to do is play the thing. And that's why I leave the PSP at the back of the drawer and play DS instead. UMDs are slow to load, don't slow them down further with tedious animations and logos.

Re:Is all the TMing needed? (1)

Pranadevil2k (687232) | more than 6 years ago | (#21438539)

So your problem is the logo screens that have been around since the SNES/Genesis? Man you've missed out on some good gaming :(

Re:Is all the TMing needed? (2, Insightful)

Tobias Lobster (169833) | more than 6 years ago | (#21438789)

Oh, I don't mind a logo screen that takes a few seconds, especially if I can press a button to skip it or if it's there while something else is loading, but waiting for a publisher's logo to load just so I can be advertised to isn't what I want.

Re:Is all the TMing needed? (1)

gknoy (899301) | more than 6 years ago | (#21440565)

Moreover, having to hit Start several times (EA logo, game logo, NFS:Underground "safety" video, title sequence ...) before I get to the menu of the game I'm already annoyed to be playing gets old VERY fast. (Please, no cracks about NFS:Underground;)) This same thing happens on PC and console games.

I rather like it on PC games when I can skip the title sequence and just get to a menu. Blizzard does this right. Once I've seen the Starcraft cinematic, never again (unless I want to). (Valve seems to do it right too, at least with the older versions of CS and HL I have.) In contrast, starting up SFC3 involves skipping a couple things. Anything from Ubisoft, or EA, or sponsored by NVidia (or ATI, I presume), is going to have another 3 seconds of unskippable crap.

Never mind that some only skip if you press Escape, yet exit the game if you hit Escape at the menu. It's not aggravating to have to restart the game a SECOND time because I hit it 5x insteadof 4... (Fallout2...).

I sound bitter. Sorry. This is something that's annoyed me for some time. I really don't care who the publisher is (I can see it on the box), and if anything this behavior sours my opinion of the publisher -- because they have explicitly marred my gaming experience every time I've loaded their games. I don't mind seeing all that crap the first time, but for goodness sake let me have an option to turn the crap off. /rant off. Sorry guys. (-: Anywho, things like this are why I enjoy older games, or games from publishers like Introversion, Blizzard, and Valve.

Re:Is all the TMing needed? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21438861)

I think they'd prefer the trophy. By now, everyone knows THe cAkE Is a LIE.

Homebrew (1)

webmaster404 (1148909) | more than 6 years ago | (#21439621)

This is good news for the PSP homebrew scene, just edit the binaries of the games to create your own, and it should work fine on almost any firmware.

Pricing (2, Insightful)

scubamage (727538) | more than 6 years ago | (#21440321)

So, since you don't have to pay for packaging, a physical disc, or any manuals, inserts, or other crap, or any of the other stuff that goes with it (like royalties for artists, production costs for any of the above, silk printing), the games bought online are going to be a whole bunch cheaper, right? ...Right?

Re:Pricing (1)

powerlord (28156) | more than 6 years ago | (#21443869)

So, since you don't have to pay for packaging, a physical disc, or any manuals, inserts, or other crap, or any of the other stuff that goes with it (like royalties for artists, production costs for any of the above, silk printing), the games bought online are going to be a whole bunch cheaper, right? ...Right?


Considering that most of the games that have come out on the PlayStation Network are around $5-$10, while the ones in the store run $30-$60, yeah, they already are, and probably will be a whole bunch cheaper.
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