[UPDATE 03/29/21] On the evening of March 27th, 2021, the “old” PlayStation Store website ceased to function for the majority of users worldwide. Sony appears to have finally closed the loophole that many of us were using to access pre-PlayStation 4 content from the web. It is still possible to search and buy content from each console and handheld. Our original post is archived below.
[UPDATED 12/21/20] Surprise! The Australian and European PlayStation Store websites came back online around December 17th. I’ve seen no official explanation as to why they were down or any indication that the “old” Store pages will remain online. Take advantage as long as you can and check out our posts for all the links and for steps to download your purchase history. Thanks to everyone who pointed out this news.
[UPDATED 12/08/20] As I feared, Sony is now pulling the plug on more PlayStation.com pages and the method below no longer works. Using Google’s search operators will still show you results but clicking many of the links now redirects to the PlayStation 5 landing page. For the time being you can click the ⯆ arrow next to most search results and pick ‘Cached’ to view an archive of the page but these can disappear as well. The original post follows, updated as applicable.
[UPDATED 11/22/20] The old Australian and European PlayStation Store websites were taken offline by November 17th, 2020. The information in this post is no longer applicable to those regions. The alternative is to load up your PlayStation 3 or Vita in these territories to view the PlayStation Store or watch our video archives.
The heartbreak continues for those of us that relied on Sony’s websites to find and buy games or to research what was available. After cutting out older PlayStation content from the PlayStation Store over the past month, Sony’s eye has seemingly fallen on PlayStation.com and I find myself feeling gutted this morning. For those who didn’t use it regularly, PlayStation.com housed a gargantuan history of pages for North American PlayStation releases going all the way back to the original console from 1995. Up until this week you could easily find titles using the search box on the site but now anything before the PlayStation 4 returns a disappointing “0 results found“.
The older pages weren’t overflowing with info but they did offer some product details that I couldn’t easily find elsewhere. For newer games these pages also frequently retained links to the PlayStation Store which helped in my research. Even when they were on sale some games were just hard to find on the PlayStation Store while their PlayStation.com pages linked directly to them. Sometimes these pages were among the scant bits of evidence that I could find to confirm these games even existed digitally. Now, like with the changes to the PlayStation Store, all that’s gone too. Well, mostly gone.
Thankfully, like our “old PS Store” workaround, there’s still a way to search PlayStation.com but it might also eventually go away [UPDATE: It has]. Google’s “search within a site” function has been around for nearly a decade at this point but I’m sure lots of people don’t even know it exists. For our purposes just head to the Google, type ‘site:playstation.com’ and then whatever game you’re looking for. You can use Google’s other search operators to refine the results as well. Put it all together and it looks something like this: site:playstation.com “age of booty”
You’ll get search results across the playstation.com domain including PlayStation Blog posts and PlayStation Store pages but look for the ones that specifically state ‘www.playstation.com’. In the case of Age of Booty the page gives us a description and even some screenshots as well as a ‘Buy Download’ link. Of course, the download page has been hidden by Sony’s recent changes to their sites but the URL remains accessible so you can check other territories or check it out using the “old” method. Yes, Age of Booty is still delisted on PlayStation 3.
Maybe it was just a feature that only I benefited from but it’s really sad to see Sony ostensibly kill 25 years of PlayStation content on the web. It makes the nostalgia trip of Astro’s Playroom feel a little more hollow.