Sony has added a new pre-load option to the PlayStation Store, allowing you to download games before they release and then unlock them at launch.
Users of Valve’s Steam service will be very familiar with the system as it has supported this feature for years. This new system means that PlayStation 3 players can buy games online and not have to wait several hours for the game to install after launch before they can play, a major barrier for many. The first game to use this new feature will be Sorcery, releasing May 22 in the U.S. and May 25 in Europe.
This is the smartest move that Sony has made in a long time. A major stumbling point for PlayStation 3 titles is how long it takes to download and install them — a simple arcade game can take up to an hour, let alone full retail releases. The new feature may encourage more people to download games from the PlayStation Store if they can have access to them as soon as they launch. It’s certainly a step in the right direction.
Will the feature make buying games online more viable for you or is a boxed copy still the best option?