Update: Sorry, this is old news as others have pointed out, just something I was not aware of. Nothing to see here, move along. These aren’t the droids you’re looking for.
Yet another suggestion that digital rentals of PSP games are on the horizon has been uncovered by the gaming press. If you call up the information screen for a PSP game “Starts”, “Expires” and “Hours Left” are now among the listed fields.
First blogged to the world by the folks over at The Retail Gamer and something you can check for yourself on a PSP with the latest Sony firmware installed, the fields are reportedly the same as those that are listed for videos either rented or purchased from the US PSN store.
It is possible that the appearance of the fields is just an outward sign that the latest firmware merely handles video and game files in the same way and maintains the same list of properties for both. However, since May this year there has been a number of revelations that make it almost certain that PSP game rentals are not far away.
There was the online survey which suggested Sony was thinking of a subscription model for PSP games rental where a subscription allows you to rent a certain number of games over a certain period. That was followed by the news that developers had been briefed about Sony’s PSP game rental plans at GDC back in March.
Obviously the widely reported firmware 6.0 feature of sorting games by expiry date requires one of these additional fields, as alluded to in our own coverage, though I guess few people had actually thought to go looking for them.
With the PSP’s revitalised software library it is good to see that Sony are giving us more ways to try and/or buy the titles that interest us. We have finally got PSN cards over here in the UK and Europe, while in the US not only has the PSN Store landed on Amazon, but nine more titles (Gran Turismo, Daxter, Motorstorm: AE, GoW:CoO, Hot Shots Golf: Open Tee 2, Secret Agent Clank, Twisted Metal: Head On, SOCOM: Fireteam Bravo 2 and NBA 10: The Inside) are joining Patapon 2 in being available for purchase at retail as PSN Game Cards. Note that SCEE have “no plans” for similar PSN Game Cards.
We are already expecting the PSN Video Store and Digital Comics next month. Maybe we will see PSP game rentals in a similar timeframe? Would you welcome and use a PSP game rental service?