PlayStation Network Recovered After Three-Week Outage

Gamers, companies relieved outage has an end.

By , Contributor

On April 21 the PlayStation Network, an outlet and home to 77 million video gamers where they can play online, download games, and chat with friends, went offline. It was the result of an intrusion, a group of as yet unidentified hackers finding a way into the network and apparently downloading not just free games, but user data and possibly even credit card information.

The outage has affected not only gamers -- some of whom no longer had access to certain games which require online authentication to play -- but also developers such as Zipper Interactive who released their online multiplayer-heavy military combat shooter SOCOM 4 during the downtime. Companies such as Capcom were vocal that services being offline were costing them "thousands, if not millions" in lost revenue.

psn.jpgMay 15 marked the service's return, slowly working through the US and Europe. Online play, friends lists, movie services like Netflix, and other streaming applications such as are now live. The store itself remains offline until further notice. Players are forced to download a new firmware update upon powering up the hardware, and also must change their password as a precautionary measure before lighting up their screens with the glow of online bliss.

Sony is attempting to bring gamers into the fold once again with a "Welcome Back" program, offering up to four free games and services. PlayStation 3 titles include hits such as Infamous and Little Big Planet, while PlayStation Portable players can download two games in addition to their PS3 freebies, that list also peppered with familiar names like ModNation Racers and Killzone Liberation. The games will be available for free once store services have finished being restored.

In addition, PlayStation Plus access will be given to non-subscribers for 30 days free of charge, subscribers being provided with 60 additional days. Music Unlimited follows suit as well, with another 30 days of free content. Sony also has plans to offer movie rentals, but has not specified what the specifics of that program will be.

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Matt Paprocki is a 13-year veteran of the video game, movie, and home media scene. He has written thousands of reviews, has been published on a variety of websites, and contributes his thoughts daily on a diverse range of topics.

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