The party is over. For a short and brief period of time, PS Vita owners were able to suddenly download PSP and PSOne games that were previously unable to be transfered to the system.  Sadly, that is no longer the case.Late Monday night, it was discovered that by going through your downloads list in the PSN Store on the Vita, nearly every PSP and PSOne game was available to download straight to the Vita. Many people rushed to grab titles they had previously purchased, such as Crash Bandicoot, Spyro, and Gran Turismo PSP.  Sony representatives were mysteriously very quiet about the changes to the store, and now we know why.

While no official statement has been made in any capacity in regards to what happened, people who have reached out to Sony technical support have all returned with the same answer.  Apparently there was a glitch in the system during the weekend Easter sale that allowed for the unauthorized downloads to be possible.  That glitch has since been corrected and the games are no longer available to download.

Sony’s lack of communication during the time the glitch was active gave many hope that this was a new permanent feature for the Vita. Gamers have now seen that it is possible for all these games to work on the Vita, so now new expectations have been created over what should be made available. This perhaps could have been something that was supposed to happen eventually and accidentally went live early, but that is probably just wishful thinking.

The good news is that any game that was downloaded during the few days they were made available are still playable on the Vita. The bad news is that if it gets deleted from the system, it will not be able to be downloaded again.

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Brad is a video game enthusiast and family man. He's been gaming since the days of the Intellivision, and while that indicates he's been doing this for quite some time, he doesn't intend to quit anytime soon. Currently he's trying desperately to convince his daughter that there are more games than just Minecraft (unsuccessfully so far).
  • Lester Paredes

    This seriously pisses me off. Before, it was just ‘incompatibility’. And I could see that for some games. Other’s, like Metal Gear Portable Ops (playable in EU, but not NA) were obvious lies. Now it turns out, they’re ALL lies. Thanks, Sony. That’s just what your consumers and backers and defenders want to find out.

    I sure hope this gets turned around. And soon.

    • Kyle Wakeling

      Actually incompatibility is rarely cited regarding PSP/PSOne titles – very few have issues with the emulator. The biggest issue with the unavailable titles is a little thing called licensing, which isn’t the easiest to get around without throwing cash at someone (who doesn’t always need/want said cash… *cough* Activision *cough*).

      • Lester Paredes

        Actually, I’ve emailed their customer service about games that were once available to download and were later taken down (Motor Storm Arctic Edge to be specific) and if the game was ever coming back. I was told outright that it was a compatibility issue by the Sony representative. And that they don’t comment of what may come in the future. I wish I still had the email, as I deleted it in a fit of rage because I knew the Motor Storm bullshit was just lies, and that it was taken down due to a hacking exploit in NA, but instead of telling me the truth, they decided to feed me bullshit..

        I know there are licencing issues, but honestly, the first thing I did when I was able to download these games was to buy something new. and i have both games on my system now. I highly doubt these games are selling much now, as they are limited to a system that’s essentially dead. I fail to see how they simply cannot make them also available for Vita. After all, the companies already have a licencing agreement to put them on PSN in the first place. In other words, PSN is a service, and the Vita is just a new device that has access to that service, so everything is the same, except the device you are using to access. In an age where my refrigerator probably could get access to Netflix, Amazon Prime and Hulu, this fiasco just boggles my mind and I fail to understand the disconnect.

        • Rodolfo Ferreira

          As far as I can tell, PSN is a worldwide service, divided into regions. Each region has been stipulated and allowed to distribute a certain product; Say for example, Crash Team Racing. I can’t dive in to the stipulations of that specific product, as I don’t know in which region it was allowed to be distributed.

          That is why it comes to no surprise when somebody tells you that this game is available in EU but not in the US. Sony-Activision licensing contract certainly stipulates which region activison allows Sony to distribute their products. Well, it turns out it’s not allowed in the US.
          I can’t help but wonder what’s keeping Sony from expanding the distribution of activison’s IP-based products; Unless activision wants to play the greedy company asking for much more money than Sony is willing to pay.

          • Kyle Wakeling

            Licensing is a complicated business – and is not only specific to timing, but console as well. I’d hate to go into specifics as I could write a ten-thousand word essay on the subject, but trust me – that’s the issue with most “unavailable” titles

            As for previously removed titles (not having to do with this glitch, but were made re-downloadable because of it), that’s a completely different bag of worms – it’s entirely possible in downloading titles that have been removed that you’re now risking your Vita.

            An emulator (which is what runs the PSP/PS1 games on Vita) can very easily have issues with certain games which could allow for hacking, bricking of your Vita through improper code handling, or other various issues. Just because something is playable, doesn’t mean it’s safe.

          • Lester Paredes

            But the fact that Portable Ops is playable in EU and not in NA is just bull. It’s not that the game is incompatible, because it clearly is otherwise EU wouldn’t be able to get it. And almost every PS1 title is playable in Japan on Vita. So it can’t be compatibility issues. It’s obvious that you are correct: Licencing issues are what’s holding everything back. PSP games were made in a specific way, so if one works, theoretically they should all work. I can understand that emulation isn’t 100% perfect, and I can accept that some games aren’t compatible or are buggy and glitchy, but if it works in your country, or in Japan, then it should also work in my country.
            My beef isn’t so much licencing, but with the lies I have been told by Sony and their inability to be transparent with it. How hard is it to say why they can’t get X game for America? Or Europe? Instead, they concoct a B.S. story and are eventually revealed to be liars.
            Sony talks a big game about how Playstation is a service, but they are doing a poor job in delivering that service to the Vita. Constantly. Over and over again, Vita gets the shaft when, if unleashed properly, it could be this amazing, must-have thing. Simply making all of these games playable would be a step in the right direction.

          • Kyle Wakeling

            I really can’t get behind your point of view at all, simply for the fact that you’re stating you understand it’s licensing then go on to mention a version of “if it’s available for one region/country, it should be available for the others” – licensing is by region (and even by country in some cases), with the owner of the license not always the same. Not only that, but as soon as you change regions you change languages, which is code – changing the structure of the game.

            I also think this whole “they’re lying” thing is a bit much; what are they lying about? If you’re referring to people who you’ve contacted at Sony, unless you’re speaking to someone actually in charge (good luck) they’re likely spouting “blanket statements” they’ve been given by their managers.

            “Oh, game X isn’t available? That’s because of compatibility.” coming from some peon someone has contacted at Sony is hardly an official statement or even trustworthy, and should not be construed as “lying”. Most employees have zero idea what’s going on in companies they work for, they’re simply there for the paycheck.

            The bottom line is that games which aren’t available are set up as such for one of four reasons;

            1. Licensing.- either it costs too much, the owner doesn’t want to license it, or the license has run out
            2. The game doesn’t work properly with the emulator
            3. The game is exploitable, such that it can be used to hack a system
            4. The developer/publisher have chosen to limit the availability

            The only one there that’s even possibly attributable to Sony is the licensing bit, and only if they’re ignoring reasonable prices (which I severely doubt they are, seeing as how they’re in business to make money). Otherwise, you should be bitching at the owners/developers/publishers, and not Sony – as they aren’t responsible for patching games or strong-arming companies into deals.

          • Rodolfo Ferreira

            Ok Kyle, we got it. I just wished you were an official Sony Rep to come up with this statement. At least Sony would have cleaned their bad reputation with mobile gamers. It’s about time they stop with this “Oh why did we do that? Your guess is as good as mine. I won’t tell a soul about this”. Just come clean, you know. As a result, A LOT of people are saying “NOW the Vita is not worth buying AT ALL – I can’t play my PSX/PSP games on it so I’ll cancel my Vita2000 pre-order and let it go”.
            I wish Vita well and despite the good games coming for it, all Sony do is kill it in every single news, every single day, every single way.

          • Lester Paredes

            Thank you. I see I’m not the only one who thinks Sony is just holding Vita ‘ s head underwater to drown it slowly and surely. They certainly nailed it with PS4, though.

          • Kyle Wakeling

            Haha, I wish I was an official Sony rep too, would make these things a lot easier if they had someone who would just explain these situations instead of just ignoring it (as every Sony rep on the PSBlog did) or giving a blanket statement.

            It really sucks that they aren’t hiring PR people who can actually give a legitimate answer, and if anyone from Sony is reading this and wants to do just that – give me a shout. 😉

          • Lester Paredes

            I understand that the peons are just there doing what they are told, but the lies are the ones coming down the line from Sony. Every time they tell me a game is incompatible with Vita, they lie. And that’s been the line consumers get when they go through customer service. They certainly are compatible, as this magic button fiasco recently proved. If they instead allowed their representatives to say that it’s a licensing issue, then I wouldn’t be nearly so upset in this situation.

          • Lester Paredes

            Thank you, that clarifies some of the mess this whole debacle is. Licencing sounds like it really, really sucks.

      • Rodolfo Ferreira

        Bingo. activison. The true reason behind this? Well, I’ll not jump the gun here and say ‘yes, throw your rocks at ’em!’ Sony’s representatives have been lying all this time, wouldn’t it be easier to just come up with the truth and tell us about the licensing issue? We all know there is no incompatibility at all, believing in that is stupid.
        But with this one more episode which pissed off all the mobile gaming community, Sony has proved once again that it can be a lying bitch. Yeah, I said bitch. As in take it away from you and give you no explanations whatsoever.

        They do that under your nose but they hope you’ll forget about it and let it go on the same week @playstation announces on Twitter the PS3 spider man bundle with that activision logo, as if nothing was wrong between the two and both companies had no difference$.

        This whole activison & Sony thing makes me sick. And since activision (still?) owns the reserved rights about Crash, you can bet this whole licensing controversy will get even worse before the end.

    • ruefrak

      It was the silence that was pissing me off. If it was a glitch, then a heads up from the PlayStation Twitter feed saying something like, “Not sure what’s going on, but we’re working on it” would have been nice to let us know it wasn’t permanent. Shuhei sent out some tweets implying this was a new thing, and everyone was really excited. Then it goes away and people are pissed.
      And these people are the hardcore fanbase. They are people who had PSPs and bought PSOne games digitally. They’re people who bought Vitas and use them constantly. These are the people you want to keep happy as often as possible. Yet, there is nothing from PlayStation. Not a blog post, tweet, anything saying what happened or why it went away. Grrrrrr!
      And while I understand that there are licensing issues with some games and that’s why one game could be made available in Europe and not the US, but what about games made by Sony, published by Sony, but not made available? Are you telling me they can’t get the license from themselves?

      • Lester Paredes

        Who knows. Maybe it’s something to do with the contract for the Voice Actors and royalties or something stupidly ridiculous. Personally, I think Sony should go ahead with paying the license fees as long as they aren’t exorbitant, and for the ones that are, just let us know: Hey, the company that owns the license wants a ridiculous amount of money and we aren’t going to pay for it. That way, we consumers know who to bother about getting the game made available.

  • This is really unfortunate. I’m glad I was able to download the games I could during this, but it’s a downer that they took it down.

  • Crash 2 is in my top five favorite PS1 games of all time. They really should make it available to everyone on the Vita. I snagged Phantasy Star Portable 2 and DBZ Shin Budokai: Another Road during the glitch so I am happier than a fat kid with cake.