Sunday, April 24, 2011

Sunday Musing Abridged ~ Should Sony Compensate Gamers?

This was proposed on Kotaku.com yesterday afternoon. The PSN network has been down for about 3 days, heading into it's 4th due to an external hacking. It's been going through a series of hackings in the past month. And then there was that debacle in February for older systems not updating clocks correctly and assuming a Leap Year was in place.

Kotaku has placed a poll, with the majority so far favoring that Sony doesn't need to owe it's consumers anything. Followed by they should offer a downloadable game for free. Overall, I'm glad that a majority understand that the PSN is FREE and are siding with the "Sony doesn't owe us" answer. For everyone else who may be complaining, I ask why?

If you're thinking about those PlayStation Plus owners, the outage doesn't affect them all that much. PlayStation Plus allows those who buy a lot of downloadable content to get them at a lower price, by paying a monthly fee. Similar to if you were in a coupon club; you pay access to get more discounts. If you're a once a month DL user, it's not worth the price. But if you use the service more then 10 times a month, then it pays for itself. PlayStation Plus only applies to the PSN store. It doesn't give the user any more or less internet access for multiplayer gaming and the like. EVERYONE with a PSN account, regardless of Plus or non-Plus status, can play online for free. Even some games are still being updated through the PSN, according to Kotaku's article, though you don't have access to the network (my bet is the PSP games).

Now, it is true that some games such as Final Fight can't be played at all because it is fully integrated into the PSN and requires you being online to play. And with a week of Portal 2 release's with multiplayer, PS3 owners are missing out on the experience.

My 2 cents. Is it inconvenient? Yes. Is it the end of the world and should Sony have to appease the masses? No. If we were PAYING FOR THE SERVICE, then I could understand being upset. But Sony gave us online gaming for free. And that's, most-in-part, why I no longer have a Gold subscription to XBox Live. I already spent the money to buy the system, get the headset, get the rechargeable batteries for the controllers (those come in the Sony controllers by default guys-Microsoft. Nintendo. You should look into that), and bought the game at full retail price. Oh and I'm already paying for internet use at home. I really don't want to pay for more when I rarely use the online features for my system.

In truth, the only people the outage affects are the habitual PSN downloaders. They can't get their content for another day or two. Holy crap! >.> If Sony wants to provide a free download or some PSN points to them, that's their call. But really, they don't owe the public anything.

Except an apology for not being honest in the first place. It's one thing to call it "maintenance" from the get-go. It's another when you stay quiet for a few days that it was a hacker attack and parade it around as if it's a routine maintenance for PSN. Apologies first. Free stuff later.

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