Reports pointing to the closure of the PS3, PSP and PSVita stores reignite the debate about the durability of digital games.
“Digital purchases are not forever.” This phrase is published by Limited Run Games on its official Twitter account. The company, which is dedicated to the distribution of titles in physical format, recalls that digital stores will cease to exist at some point, all in conjunction with the news – not yet confirmed – that the PlayStation Store of PS3, PSP and PSVita they will close their doors definitively next summer. To be fair, box purchases are not forever, since the physical format also deteriorates, not to mention that current products are fed by patches that are distributed through these platforms.
The future of digital games is tied to the companies that control the stores. If one day they decide to delete them from their servers, there will be no option to download them again, no matter how much you have left part of your savings on them. This premonition of the future has already been glimpsed in specific products. For example, when Konami shelved the Silent Hills project, the P.T. it was no longer available as soon as the rights expired. Those who downloaded it to their console have it safely stored on their hard drive, but it is no longer possible to download it even if you keep it in your library.
If one day they decide to remove them from their servers, there will be no option to download them again
When accessing the questions and answers page of Nintendo Wii, one of the most successful platforms on the market, I have come across a message that perfectly sums up what may be an omen of what will happen in a few years. “It is no longer possible to buy new content from the Wii Store. However, for now, you can continue to download the content you purchased or transfer the content from a Wii console to a Wii U console. Please note that these features will end in the future. ” The keywords are “for now” and “these features will end in the future.” Without specifying a specific term, it is pointed out with crystal clarity that no, digital purchases are not forever.
I do not know how much it costs companies to maintain these services, but I firmly believe that companies must ensure as much as possible that their customers keep their digital purchases, that they do not quickly forget the trust they have placed in them. With that message, Nintendo has placed an expiration label, although the date is still blurred. When that deadline expires, when Kyoto decides that the time has come to turn off the lights, all those purchases will evaporate and players will have to think if it is worth downloading everything they have acquired in the stores (some will need a lot of cards SD). And that must be applied to all companies.
Jim Ryan, head of PlayStation, said a few words that I can hardly forget: “Recently, I was at a Gran Turismo event where there were games from PlayStation, PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 4. Games from the first two generations of PlayStation looked old. Why would anyone want to play this? “If that’s the value placed on classic products, I’m afraid the die is cast. Let’s hope the success of backward compatibility on Xbox will raise awareness. to all companies of the need to keep their legacy intact.