Thursday, 28 April 2011

Sony's massive cock up

Games are once again being shunted in the headlines but for once it’s not because Grand Theft Auto is molesting the nation’s children, or that Call of Duty is actually an al-Quaeda training facility. Even more interestingly, it’s also drawn the support of gamers to cry out against one of the industry’s super giants. Of course I am talking about the current PSN outage.

Sony’s small faux pas in this international stage play is simple. They took the PlayStation Network down without providing a decent reason before telling everyone a week later that all of their data might have been stolen. Please excuse me while I go and change some passwords, monitor my bank account like an obsessive compulsive hawk, and make sure that my bike is still chained up.

It’s one thing to have all of this information nicked, but to not tell anyone about the possible damage for so long is really dodgy. It probably won’t affect the majority of people, but it’s still wise to take the appropriate actions just in case the bastard hand of fate decides your life could do with an extra speed bump.

This is before you start thinking about how upset PS3 users are that they haven’t had the opportunity to sample Portal 2’s online co-op play yet, or enjoy the new SOCOM game in the way it is clearly meant to be done. Many have perceived the PSN to be slightly behind other online gaming services up until recently, so being crippled with no conceivable end in sight will certainly not do anything to sway that popular opinion.

It’ll also be interesting to see how this has affected other game developers. No revenue from digital content for them or Sony for every day the service has been down must be mounting into a big pile of wet, slippery unhappiness. I wonder if subscribers to PS3 MMO DC Universe Online will get any kind of compensation for not being able to play what they have already paid for on a monthly basis. What about those that have paid for a PSN Plus subscription? Bet they can’t be happy to see how their shiny e-coins didn’t go towards protecting against long term outages.

Hopefully services will resume to normal sometime soon, but it would be nice to know a few more details about what has happened. I can only hope that it is something as entertaining as the work experience boy pulling the wrong lever in a massive control room at Sony HQ. He’d certainly get an interesting reference from it.

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