For some reason, fans bring the PlayStation home back to life

A screenshot from PlayStation Home

Picture: Destination Home

That Metaverse is the latest stink to make waves in the virtual world landscape, but why move forward when we have the gems returning from the past?

There has definitely been a hole in the hearts of many PlayStation players since the closure of the virtual world of PlayStation 3, PlayStation Home, in 2015. Sure, it wasn’t great, but it certainly was something. Projects such as Neotopi have made it their mission to bring PlayStation Home concept into the new console, and Sony did recently renew the trademark to PlayStation Home for the second time this year. However, a non-profit project has been working to revive the original.

First of all, let’s talk about the original. PlayStation Home was a virtual 3D social gaming platform for PlayStation 3 developed by Sony Computer Entertainment London Studio. Like many virtual games, users would create their own avatar to represent themselves. They wanted their own apartment, they wanted to fill with things for free, bought and won. They could communicate with other users and play solo and multiplayer mini-games. The open beta in 2008 remained in beta throughout its life and closed in 2015.

Destination Home is a non-profit project who have spent years trying to bring PlayStation Home back to life, with an offline version available for download and play on modded PlayStation 3 consoles or emulators. Recently, they have partnered with the PlayStation Online Network Emulated (PSONE) fan group, which has allowed them to play PlayStation Home online again. According to the group, online access to public and private lobbies should be available by the end of the year.

Recently, Destination Home released a teaser on its official YouTube.

According to the group’s website, the project does not accept monetary donations of any kind. It has instead chosen to take cache donations from players. Cache donations are information collected by the game stored on the consoles of the era. Destination Home uses this data to learn more about PlayStation Home. This in turn informs their project. From these cache donations, Destination Home has provided spaces, furniture and clothing. They then restore these functions for conservation and educational purposes.

Video game preservation has recently come into the spotlight with Microsoft’s vice president Phil Spencers comments on the subject, but the work of emulating and preserving video games is largely carried out by the gaming community itself in the form of passion projects. Another case of an incredibly talented group of fans taking matters of preservation into their own hands. We love to see it.

This story originally appeared on Kotaku Australia.


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