The PlayStation Home network has officially shut its doors after seven years of dedicated service, leaving behind bizarre memories of a social networking platform that neither felt wholly accepted, nor was greeted with open arms from the gaming community. Those who still frequented PlayStation Home found out about the closing time half a year ago, and have had plenty of time to watch as the community slowly stopped ‘returning home’ alongside the official stoppage of content.
The entire idea was unveiled all the way back at the Game Developers Conference in 2007, and was heralded as a new extension of social gaming and connectivity. Right from the beginning, it saw a rocky start due to the general indifference of fans and lack of content, but Sony pushed forward with their creation and continued to pump out plenty of multiplayer content. In its last few months of existence, Sony released free downloadable content as a tribute to the dedicated fans who still used PlayStation Home.
The platform saw a massive reboot effort back in 2012, where Sony invited gamers to get in on combat games, poker, and even the creation of a sports district that had live scores from games around the world. Like most items in Home, it was a really interesting concept – but it never caught on, and for the most part the network was ignored as PlayStation users opted to jump straight into games as opposed to mingling in a Second Life-esque middle ground.
We’ll always have our memories of streets clogged with dancing avatars, awkward interactions, and a surprisingly large library of over 10,000 items and 230 games. From playable lobsters, awkward hot tub downloadable content, and a plethora of colorful wig and clothing selections, Home truly had it all. It was a weird place by the end, but at least the remaining users evidently enjoyed what it had become, even if it wasn’t remotely close to what Sony had envisioned.
Whatever your thoughts are on the platform, it was an innovative attempt from Sony and deserves applause if nothing else but for that. It may not have hit its stride over the last few years, but it did entertain a core group of fans, and perhaps in the future Sony will try to garner interest in a service that becomes more well-integrated with the PlayStation user interface.
What did you think about PlayStation Home, Ranters? Do you think the social gaming network had a chance? Was there anything you would’ve changed?
PlayStation Home ran from 2008-2015.