Death Of A PS3, Part 2

Yesterday you read about my experiences of death and retail.  Today, my tale continues once I had fought my way home through the Christmas shopping traffic.

PS3-Enabled Once More

Roughly twenty four hours after my PS3 had died I was back at home setting up my new Slim.  First impressions were that it does look a lot better ‘in the flesh’ than it does in the pictures.  The buttons look nothing like as tacky as I expected and the LEDs facing upwards instead of being on the front edge adds to its stealthy appearance.  The glossy finish to the front edge with the Sony logo on it looks good too.

I was particularly interested in how it compared audibly against my old PS3 as it was supposed to be much quieter.  Not that my old one ever approached the noise levels of a typical 360 but fan noise was still noticeable.  On the Slim the fan noise sounds like a lower pitch and is indeed significantly quieter even when the console is worked hard.  The Blu-ray drive is generally comparable noise-wise though on the Slim it is much more noticeable when the disc starts or stops spinning.  Now the HDD is at the front of the console instead of being tucked around the side it is easier to discern the sounds that makes too.

I have mentioned elsewhere that I think the key weaknesses of the Slim, compared to my launch-day PS3, are only having half the number of USB ports and no memory card reader.  I can use USB adaptors for my Memory Sticks, etc., but obviously that only exacerbates the problem of the reduced number of USB ports.  I am still baffled why Sony do not include USB ports on the back of the PS3 as that would be much more convenient, I assume, for users of Play TV, and I would prefer to be able to plug in my PlayStation Eye and the external HDD I use for backups around the back and not have to swap them in and out to charge controllers or my headset.

The Restoration (nothing to do with the monarchy)

Speaking of backups, I backup my PS3 weekly, so I had a backup from just four days previously.  Except for losing a few hard-won three-star Spec Ops ratings I expected to be back to normal pretty quickly.  I knew some stuff wouldn’t restore, but thought that would be in the minority.  I had upgraded my original PS3 to a 250GB HDD within a few weeks of getting it and had over 200GB of data on it so I was somewhat surprised when less than 100GB restored to my new Slim.

A quick scout around the XMB showed what was missing; the contents of the Game Data folder, so all the mandatory/optional installs, updates and DLC, and the roughly 50 PSN games I had bought off the PSN Store.  I also noticed that the collection of downloaded videos I had on my PS3 had restored without retaining their download dates, so they were listed in an utterly random order all with identical timestamps.

So the next job, one I did not realise at that time would keep me fully occupied for two evenings, was to re-download the 200+ games and items of free and premium DLC I had got from the PSN Store.  I was surprised there were that many.  It meant that the download queue’s limit of thirty items at a time was woefully inadequate.  Fortunately the download history is numbered so when you have to keep going back into it it is easy to find where you had got to.

After those two evenings (six or seven hours in total) of hammering my 20Mbps connection I had everything re-downloaded and decided to celebrate with a quick boost around Paradise City.  The celebration was somewhat delayed by the next unpleasant surprise Sony had in store for me.  The four gigabytes of Burnout that I had already downloaded did not include the handful of updates that Criterion have applied since the game’s release.  So before picking my ride from the junk yard and hitting the streets I had to wait while another gigabyte of updates downloaded and applied themselves.  Why the files you download from the Store cannot include the updates I do not know.

Trophy Syncing (more like badly-dubbed than lip-synced)

Platinum TrophyMy quick spin in my Diamond P12 (thank The Lords Of Backup that my save games restored) turned into more of a lengthy jaunt as my Burnout sessions are wont to do.  The simple joy of playing Burnout changed to horror though when I earned a trophy.  Not that getting a trophy is bad, it is just that Burnout was my first platinum and I had gone on to get all ninety eight trophies included in the game and its DLC.

I had already synced my trophies after getting my PSN account set up on my new PS3 and it had appeared to work fine, though I had not checked all the trophies.  Calling up the in-game XMB and taking a look at my trophies I was somewhat put out to find that there was only the one Burnout trophy listed in my collection.  I quit the game and went back into the trophy list re-syncing again as I did and was relieved to find all my Burnout trophies present and correct.  I fired up Burnout again, checked the in-game XMB again and they were all still present.  I have since experienced this same disappearing-reappearing trophy behaviour with both Resistance 2 and Uncharted 2 as well.

Tomorrow you can find out what happened when I called Sony and why PS3s in TSA Towers should be quaking in fear.

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