A new Firefox add-on, Valkyrie PS Store, is allowing users to access the PlayStation 3, Portable, and Vita Stores once more; and make purchases.
For those unfamiliar, in October 2020, SIE announced the PlayStation Store on browser and mobile would no longer sell PlayStation 3, Portable, or Vita games; after the new browser store launched.
On March 29th, the old browser PlayStation Store was effectively shut down; while users had got around the late October 2020 cut-off via region-specific URLs, the website began to redirect to the new store on March 27th. Among the 2000 digital-only games no longer being purchasable though those stores, 138 digital-only games will be lost; not being available physically or on other consoles.
Later on March 29th, Sony Interactive Entertainment (SIE) quietly confirmed the closing dates for the console stores as well; the PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Portable console stores on July 2nd, followed by PlayStation Vita on August 27th. Several PlayStation Vita developers stated learned this at the same time as the general public; with some still working the morning of the announcement.
SIE CEO Jim Ryan later announced that the PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Vita stores would not be shutting down this Summer. Top Hat Studios said on the day of the statement “We’ve only just learnt the news about the Vita store policy change at the same time you have!” Their Sense: A Cyberpunk Ghost Story and Synergia will also become the final PlayStation Vita games.
While the older PlayStation Stores have a “stay of execution,” the aforementioned region-specific URLs still redirect to the modern PlayStation Store for PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 5. The old stores are still active however, and can be access.
As noted by Inside Universal editor and podcast host Chris Glass; it seems several HTML files from the old PlayStation Stores were removed; prevent access to their APIs (application programming interface). This was quickly exploited by a new Firefox add-on by SilicaAndPina; Valkyrie PS Store.
As VGC reports, the add-on accesses archived versions of the store page via archive.org. While URLs saved in this manner should not have the interactivity of a normal web page (i.e. archiving a store or YouTube page would not let you buy or watch the video), users can log-in to their PlayStation account, and access their download list.
The add-on provides a more “refined version” on Silica’s earlier video tutorial, which (in summation) downloads the relevant HTML files from archived versions of the store, and using debugging proxy server tool Fiddler to use those files when accessing the PlayStation store. Silica was even still able to search and find PlayStation 5 games; meaning all PlayStation Store games could be bought.
While this is something to celebrate, there is no doubt there is still a ticking clock over the classic store. When fully taken down, Sony will likely remove access completely to it.