Sony likes what it sees in social, looks at virtual goods in PS3 games

PlayStation Network
PlayStation Network

Rather, Sony likes what it sees in what's behind social games: cash money. Develop reports that Icelandic EVE Online creator CCP Games is in talks with the PlayStation 3 (PS3) pusher to bring virtual good purchases to the PlayStation Network (PSN) for third-party PS3 games. CCP Games CEO Hilmar Pétursson told Develop that it's "breaking new ground," outlining digital item sales on PSN for all developers.

You know, the same digital item sales that helped Zynga become a multibillion dollar company? Oh, and the same strategy that spurred a free-to-play explosion in the MMO (massively multiplayer online game) space both on PC and consoles? Yeah, those digital item sales. "We're having many meetings with Sony to ensure they have solid policies on virtual currency," Pétursson told Develop. "Given the amount of back and forth there, we can definitely see us breaking new ground."

According to the website, these talks could ultimately pave the way for in-game item purchases through virtual currency across all future games on PSN. However, a revenue split (e.g. Facebook's 30 percent of all Facebook Credit purchases in social games) is still being negotiated between CCP and Sony.

The game that both parties hope will jump start these in-game item purchases is CCP's upcoming shooter Dust 514, a futuristic combat game connected with and set in the EVE Online universe. Between this news and the virtual goods-packed PlayStation Home update, it's clear Sony looks to get with the times (and make lots more money).

Is it smart for Sony to get in on digital item purchases in its traditional games? What else will traditional game companies learn from social games and free-to-play MMOs? Sound off in the comments. Add Comment.

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