Thursday, December 16, 2010

Games being removed from PSN

It was recently mentioned in our comments section that Bishi Bashi Special (pictured) has been removed from the EU PSN store. So I ask: why is PSN so horrendously crappy?

This is shameful, since not only was it Konami’s first game to go up, and cheaper than the other PS1 games, it was also for a long time the best PS1 game on there (which is more a reflection that everything else sucked). Still, Bishi Bashi was an awesome, insane collection of wacky minigames, including one called “Uncle Launcher” which was as its name implied, and another involved brides throwing cake. I own the disc so never bought the PSN version, but now I wish I had. No explanation was given, and its removal is a mystery. At least with Outrun it was known to be due to Sega’s licensing running out. But why would Konami remove a PS1 game? They also previously removed Silent Hill, and so I’m left wondering what will go next.

This raises further concerns. Will we start to see random awesome games getting pulled from the Japanese PSN store? There’s about 10 games I still want which are on there, but I’ve been holding off because the cost would be at least £60 ($100+), so I buy one or two when the mood takes me and I have spare funds. If we’re going to start seeing random removals it would be worth buying everything right now.

This is hugely problematic, and is a reason I hate digital distribution. For every Gaia Seed they release, costing $6 instead of $150, there’s the threat of a Bishi Bashi style removal. With physical copies I can wait a few years and even if stores stop stocking it, I can buy it on eBay or forums. And it’s not like I can buy the PS1 discs, because Sony has infuriatingly region locked PS1 discs. So really, we’re all screwed. PSN should be a method for allowing niche games to thrive, and instead we’re seeing them removed without warning and without explanation, denying people the chance to play them entirely. If they’d made an announcement we could at least have gone and grabbed it.

I would recommend all US readers to try Bishi Bashi by buying a UK PSN card, since it is the perfect party game with some fantastic multiplayer modes (it could be the best beer&bros game on the PS1). But I’m afraid you can’t, because Konami won’t let you. Honestly, we’re all better off just going out and pirating this stuff, because companies don’t want our money.

Somebody please try to explain to me the logic behind such rank stupidity. I WANT MY BISHI BASHI BACK!


  1. Are you shitting me? I was planning to finagle some European PSN Fun Money to buy Outrun! This is an OUTRAGE

  2. It,s not just Video games Konami are stupid with the Yugioh TCG. They make special sets that are mostly reprints that are never sold in Europe but they advertise them on their UK website still.

    But it gets worse recently they Banned alot of the Trading cards from Offical Tornaments in Europe that was given away as free Gifts from the US Shouen Jump Magazines just because the Manga publisher does not make a UK or European version of the Magazine.

    This is a big problem because it takes some times 2 years or more to Reprint them to let any European players play them. They also make the reprint versions very hard to pull from packs as well no matter how bad they are.

    This is not Konami begin lazy either because all cards have fully localised text Months before they come out in the TCG.

    Marvel ULA 2 is gonna have problems after christmas too then they remove the DLC forever and once it is removed no one can play online matches who do not have the DLC because the free version that alowed you to includes a trial of Juggernaut a DLC character idiots.

  3. This is hardly unique to PSN. Several titles have been removed from XBLA as well, and of course this practice isn't new to PC gamers who use the variety of download services.

    At least with the PS1 titles on PSN, disc versions exist. In the case of titles removed from XBLA and PSP/PS3 download-only games, they cease to exist once they are removed. There is no disc copy to track down. The game is gone.

    It's one of my major concerns with going digital for gaming. Ubisoft/Sony/Microsoft can take away my Scott Pilgrim anytime they want, but no force on Earth can take my copy of Ducktales for the Famicom away from me.

  4. @Jay
    Outrun came down several months ago. Sorry, man. :(

  5. It's worse when say Double D Dodgeball disappeared from Xbox Live. No one played it, no one cared but it was actually pretty amusing (just overpriced, should have been 400).

  6. This is the main thing I hate about digital distribution. Companies should really be more aware of what the repercussions of taking down a game can be. There are still people who want to play these games, but now they can't (legally).