Is Sony Making a Mistake with the PSP Go, Or Is It a Blessing In Disguise?

A lot of people on the internet seem to think so.

For those unaware, Sony is poised to launch a revitalized version of their PlayStation Portable system called the "PSP Go!" this week and former PSP owners are none too happy about this new hardware. Gamers are usually thrilled to see a new version of a game console, so why are they so hostile this time around?

Well it's because the Go! is a fully download-only device now and no longer supports Sony's proprietary UMD format. To put things simply: people who bought games for the old version of the PSP can't use those on the new system.

To make matters worse, Sony also has no plans to let people trade in their old discs for a download code for the same games. That leaves old PSP owners deciding if they want to ditch the games they already bought and pick up the new system or stick with their old system that lacks some of the improvements such as a 16GB hard drive, built-in Bluetooth, and sliding screen. Obviously the PSP Go! isn't exactly what gamers wanted from Sony, but the company is not being as heartless as it may seem. The old PSP that supports UMDs will still be sold alongside the Go! and UMDs will still be sold in stores. The only issue with the revamped portable is that users who wanted to upgrade are out left in the cold.

But is anyone in a position to complain about the Go? Ever since the system was revealed in Summer, the platform has seemingly broken out of its slump with a slate of many high quality games being released. Such highly anticipated games includes Gran Turismo, Motorstorm: Arctic Edge, Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars, SOCOM, Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker, and many more.

With the release of the PSP Go also comes a full-on relaunch of a platform that earlier this year was dying a slow death. Also announced is the Minis program for the portable PlayStation which is essentially Sony's version of the App Store.

So while gamers may complain for now, I see the release of the Go! as a good sign for the platform as a whole. Developers are more interested in making games for the system again and Sony gets to advertise the crap out of this without much competition from Apple or Nintendo. In the long term, Sony is making a smart move and I applaud them for that.


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