PlayStation Reportedly To Restrict 'Shovelware' On Its Platform

Nov 22, 2022 · 10


According to publication Dex.Exe, PlayStation has sent a letter to its developers in which it states that it will implement new policies to prevent the distribution of "spam" or "repetitive content." Dex.Exe posted a screenshot of the letter, claiming that it was sent to them by an anonymous source, but it's worth noting that this has yet to be corroborated by a developer, or any of PlayStation's official channels, so take it with a grain of salt.

The letter describes PlayStation's desire to ensure its customers can find what they're looking for on the platform, and it states that when "partners oversaturate or 'spam' PlayStation Store with variants of the same type of content," it can be detrimental for both users and other developers. The alleged letter lists some bullet points to describe what constitutes "repetitive content" in PlayStation's eyes. Essentially, it's games that have identical gameplay and functionality as something already on the store but are differentiated only by a slight variation of assets.

Many members of the PlayStation community have recently been expressing consternation about the state of its store, which makes this letter saliently timely. Fans say that it's too difficult to naturally find new games to play while browsing, given that the section of new releases is often filled with games that don't seem to have any creative intent behind them. The letter's description is notably reminiscent of some of the store's worst offenders, those being the 'jumping' games.

PlayStation Reportedly To Restrict 'Shovelware' On Its Platform

There are currently dozens of games available on the PlayStation Store, whose only difference, at least from a glance, is the item that jumps. There's The Jumping Burger, The Jumping Pumpkin, The Jumping Taco, and even The Jumping Tofu. That's only a fraction of the amount of 'jumping' games available, and there are many other sets of "repetitive content" games that do the same thing, changing some other asset. If this letter is real, it may be PlayStation's first step toward curating its platform from these types of games.

When it comes to what consequences games like these may face, the letter states they could have restricted discoverability, that the game could be unsearchable and only accessed via direct link, that the game could be prohibited from appearing in the section of new releases, and even that the game could be removed from the store until the policy violations are rectified. Furthermore, if a distributor repeatedly breaks these alleged new policies, it "may result in the suspension or eventual termination of a partner’s PlayStation Partners account."

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