After this summer you won’t be able to purchase games or movies on the PS3, PSP, or PS Vita (Though you will still be able to re-download purchased content on those platforms). TheGamer broke the news last week and this week multiple emails were sent to PlayStation customers reaffirming that it was indeed closing down shop for those systems. I also received the email down below with the details:
“We are closing PlayStation™Store on PlayStation®3 on July 2nd, 2021 and on PlayStation®Vita devices on August 27th 2021. Additionally, the remaining purchase functionality for PSP™ (PlayStation®Portable) will also retire on July 2nd, 2021. After thoughtful consideration, we decided to make these changes in an effort to focus our resources for PlayStation Store on PlayStation®4 and PlayStation®5, which will enable us to enhance the customer experience even further. We thank you for your support on these platforms throughout the years.
What does this mean for you?
You will no longer be able to purchase PS3, PS Vita and PSP digital content, including games and video content.
You will also no longer be able to make in-game purchases through games on PS3, PS Vita and PSP.”
Apparently PlayStation believes it will be able to improve the PSN store experience on PS4 and PS5 with this move. Likely what’s going on is that they want to clear up the server space a bit and those apps don’t get the traffic to justify keeping them up. In either case PlayStation has seen fit to shut down what is essentially part of it’s online legacy with this move.
What It Means For Gamers
This news is pretty devastating for gamers. Granted, there are those who might just write this off simply as “old games are old”. I get that. But the collector and preservationist in me can’t help but see this as a loss of a lot of digital content. Thankfully if you purchased any content on those systems you will be able to redownload all of that. However, in the future, if any younger gamers want to check out the back catalog they will be unable to do so. It is for this reason I have always been a proponent of physical media. Sure discs get scratched, hardware rusts and corrodes, but at the very least the onus is on you to preserve your games and not be at the whim of a digitals tore that will one day close down. Even then games exist on the secondhand market.
The closure of the PS Vita’s online store will be particularly rough as it has many games that only exist digitally as compared to the PS3. This is in stark contrast to Xbox and it’s commitment to rolling generations into each other and supporting backwards compatibility on it’s own consoles. What we will likely see is a lot of these games will be integrated into PlayStation’s “PS Now”. PS Now is PlayStation’s subscription model for streaming older games across its vast PS3 and PS2 library. All we can do now is check out the store before it closes this summer.
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