Downloads: PSN Sales and PSP-no-go

In an interview with gi.biz, Doublesix, the developer of Burn Zombie Burn, have revealed that since the release of Firmware 3.0 sales have increased by 40%. The sudden jump is apparently due to the ‘What’s New’ panel that we can now find under our XMB.

It would appear that Doublesix’s head honcho, James Brooksby has been calling for this panel for some time and, initially, it would seem that he had a point. The space is now being used to advertise the latest PSN download titles without people actually having to be on the store. With the boost for Burn Zombie Burn, it will be interesting to see if other developers notice similar sales increases.

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At the time of FW3.0’s release, I heard a lot of people complaining about this new feature in particular. Some described it as ‘pointless’ whilst others saw it as an ‘attack on our intelligence’. The latter argument meaning that the store already has a ‘Latest’ section on it. But if it is helping these developers bring in more revenue, then surely this is a good thing, right? I personally love Burn Zombie Burn and if this increases the chances of more titles entering production, then advertise away I say!

Mr. Brooksby sees this as ‘Sony endorsing digital distribution’, but what with the PSPgo being download-only, I don’t think it will be stopping here. Of course, the man in charge at Doublesix says ‘more still needs to be done to market the downloadable content’ but I’m worried that this could be taken too far. The last thing I want to see when booting up my PS3 is copious amounts of adverts; the few we have so far are sufficient in my opinion.

But, as mentioned above, if the PSPgo contains no UMD then I foresee Sony ramming DLC down our throats at every opportunity, especially if retailers have no continuing incentive to sell the hardware due to lack of follow on sales such as UMD Games. One such Dutch retailer, Nedgame, has already decided not to sell the new PSP, citing high price and lack of games as their two main reasons. They have also voiced concern over Sony’s pricing structure for PSPgo titles. If you read Dutch you can view the site here.

Most of the recent Playstation games all feature DLC of some sort and it helps bring in that little extra cash over time, which again, I’m all for. The last thing I want to see is another potentially great studio go down the pan. But what with the PSN store starting to really take off as of late with some excellent titles, and the new PSPgo, we could be entering an age of download madness.

Is this good or bad?

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