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PS Now photo
PS Now

Saints Row, Metro, Sacred, and more join PS Now


But does it make PS Now worth it?
Feb 03
// Joe Parlock
Deep Silver has just released a whole load of its back catalogue on to the PS Now streaming service. Saint’s Row: Gat Out of Hell, Escape Dead Island, Metro: Last Light, Narco Terror, Risen 3: Titan Lords, Sacred Citad...

Inside the incredibly shady world of selling stolen PSN accounts

Jan 26 // Mike Cosimano
Earlier this month, Destructoid received a tip from a source [who we will refer to as 'Tim'] claiming they had unknowingly purchased a stolen PlayStation Network account via G2A.com. For those unaware, G2A is a Hong Kong-based site that primarily sells third-party keys and even accounts. (Some of you may remember G2A from this story about stolen Far Cry 4 keys.) Although G2A is itself a third-party seller, it also acts as a platform for individual sellers and buyers to conduct transactions. One such transaction resulted in the sale of an account belonging to a man [who we will refer to as 'Eric']. When an account sale is on the up-and-up, the account will be nigh-barren, apart from the advertised game. There's some mojo you can perform that will allow you to play this game on your console via your main account (which I won't recount here, because it kinda makes sense and I don't want any of you thinking this is a good idea). Of course, there are examples of people just selling their stacked account in the hopes of making some extra cash; buy a bunch of popular games on sale, flip the account for more than the games are worth. Or, hey, you've just sold your PS4 in a fit of rage, why not sell that account full of platinum Trophies too while you're at it? There are too many hypotheticals in play. When you buy an account, there's a 50% chance you've just committed a crime. Unless you sign in and find a bunch of credit cards and a still-active PlayStation Plus membership. This was Tim's red flag, and he immediately contacted the seller (who refunded the transaction without a word) and Eric, who took back control of his account. "I got this account, expecting some garbled random email address and password, but the email address was just some dude's name. I kind of raised an eyebrow at that, but thinking the email address might belong to the person who bought the code to sell, I tried it out, and... it was genuinely just some guy's account," Tim said in an email to Destructoid. This is exactly what happened to me. I wanted to get a feel for the account-buying process, so I went looking for popular big-budget video games (reasoning that more people would be selling those as opposed to an account made specifically for Race the Sun or whatever) before eventually settling on a listing for Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain. I received an account that was as generic as they come. No name, no credit cards, no friends, no Trophies...and a copy of Ground Zeroes. Initially, I thought I had found a legit seller that had just made a mistake. That was ostensibly the end of my little experiment, so I went to the seller looking to get a refund. The seller was very insistent that I take a new key instead...which eschewed the generic email and password for a significantly less generic one. Again, much like Tim, I raised an eyebrow at this. But I logged in anyway, reasoning that I would either return the account and save a person from identity theft -- or, if this was an honest transaction, end up with an account that I could just gift to a friend. This account was very much someone else's, which is where the "light theft" part comes in. Nate Martin (his real name!) is the CEO of Puzzle Break, an Escape the Room venue located in Seattle. I know his address and the last four digits of two of his credit cards, thanks to the purchase I made through G2A. Again, luckily for Nate, I had zero intent of holding onto another person's account, so that information remains safe with me. But there's no telling what could've happened if Nate's account ended up in the wrong hands. And he has zero idea how his password ended up in my hands. "I couldn't begin to guess how it happened. I'm guessing it was that mass hack a while back I vaguely remember hearing about. No other accounts of mine (that I'm aware of) seem to be compromised," Nate told us. "I have not much in the way of free time. I'm not super interested in throwing myself against a byzantine [interactive voice response; the telephone robots that ask you if you meant 'billing' when you said 'operator'] that I'm sure Sony has in exchange for a gift card." Eric, the man whose account sparked this whole investigation, said it took "over an hour" to prove his identity to Sony. "I would say Friday I went to my PS4 and was unable to do anything with the system. About two minutes after that, I received three emails from Sony stating that my PayPal had been removed and my passwords had changed, along with my first and last name being changed as well." Sony did not respond to request for comment. It appears the modus operandi changes between scammers. According to Nate, the hacker didn't change his password. I was going to make sure the account belonged to him before I gave him what I assumed was a new password set by the seller, but it turns out Nate knew it off the top of his head. So how does the law work in this particular case? For the purposes of this article, we'll be working with California penal codes -- code 496 in particular. Obviously, a person who knowingly receives stolen property (with the intent of withholding it from the owner), will be charged with either a felony or misdemeanor. In the case of both Tim and myself, returning the account means we're off the hook, and the person who stole the account in the hopes of selling it is definitely 100% a criminal. I was curious if PSN accounts having no basis in the physical world meant something regarding the legality of this transaction. For this story, I talked to New York City-based lawyer Harvey Lippman about selling accounts that don't belong to you, on the off chance there was some crazy loophole that made all of this legal. According to Harvey, that is absolutely not the case. "From what I've read, a lot of this stuff is evolving. There are some newer laws being written," Harvey said in a phone interview. From a lawyer's perspective, he likened it to the theft of a movie ticket. "You don't own the film, but that ticket gives you the right to watch it." That license constitutes "property," and is thus subject to stolen property laws. The next question we have to ask is the placement of G2A in this whole situation. Unless G2A knew for sure that something was up, Harvey says the site is not liable. "Absent some kind of negligence of knowledge, the site is not liable -- unless there is a statute saying they have a duty."  Well, the site's Terms of Service states that "G2A.COM is neither a party to the agreement between the User and the Seller, nor between the Selling User and the User, nor between Sellers -- it merely provides specific assistance and administration services to the Sellers and the Users." The site claims it is the thirdest of parties, but let's dig into that claim a little bit. Going back to penal code 496, in the case of "every swap meet vendor and every person whose principal business is dealing in, or collecting, merchandise or personal property, and every agent, employee, or representative of that person," third-party sellers have a duty to make sure the product is not stolen. So, in this particular case, based on G2A's Terms of Service, the site defines the seller as a second third-party; G2A is more like the person who owns the parking lot where the illegal swap meet happened. As if that wasn't enough, the site that sold me the stolen account also claims to be a third-party, having purchased the code from a seller on Taobao -- a Chinese e-commerce site owned by Alibaba. Yes, that Alibaba. Last we saw, the company was working on a credit system with the Chinese government. Somebody buy me a corkboard, some red yarn, and some thumbtacks. According to a source inside G2A, the company is currently investigating both my case and Tim's. "Sellers of PSN accounts (or any other digital product present on our marketplace) are under supervision of our Customer Experience specialists. Our specialists react every time when there is even a shadow of doubt as to any credibility and trustworthiness. In such cases of an invalid product, sellers are banned and the customers refunded promptly," our source said in an email to Destructoid. Researching this story was like trying to escape from Alcatraz with only a nail file. The deeper I got, the more I hoped to find some measure of closure -- a feeling that never came. I only had to stop reporting on this because at some point, you just have to publish what you've got. We're still waiting on emails from G2A, the organization that sold me the stolen account, and (hopefully) Sony. Taobao was a dead end, because I don't speak a lick of Chinese, and even then I doubt the seller in question would confess to a reporter. At best, I would get another deflection. I can't promise you an ending, at least one that provides a sense of finality. I don't know who stole either account, and nobody's owning up to the deed. All I can tell you is that I've left this experience less trusting of my fellow man. Keep your information safe, gang.
True Crime photo
Lawyers have already been contacted
When I start looking into a story that I know will go much longer than my average Destructoid news post, I like to get as hands-on as possible. I don't just want to read a bunch of other articles about the subject in question...

Review: Guns Up!

Dec 20 // CJ Andriessen
Guns Up! (PlayStation 4) Developer: Valkyrie EntertainmentPublisher: SCEAMSRP: Free-to-play (with microtransactions)Release Date: December 5, 2015 Guns Up! is Boom Beach for your PlayStation 4. This tower offense/defense game tasks you with creating an impenetrable base and building an unstoppable army. To do both you'll need munitions, the in-game currency. You earn munitions by successfully attacking bases other Guns Up! players have designed over and over and over again. And then again about 500 more times. And then six more times after that. Attacking player bases revolves around you selecting your troops, sending them into battle and supporting them. "Support" takes the form of randomly unlocked specials on the field and from support cards you use before each attack begins. The experience is passive at best. You have no direct control of your troops outside of a few of the aforementioned specials that will force them to attack specific structures or move them to a spot on the battlefield. But once they destroy that object or reach that spot, soldiers revert back to their pre-programmed A.I. which can only be described as Gomer Pyle-esque. Other Guns Up! players cannot directly defend their bases from attacks. It's their base design versus your army. After about 45 minutes or so, I realized it's the same base design virtually all the time. That's because most players have realized the ideal set-up involves bottlenecking your opponents into a tight space with a turret at the end to mow 'em down. Couple this with the fact there is just the one Eastern Bloc countryside-inspired setting for the game and all the bases began to blur into one another. Attacks can be completed in as little as 90 seconds. With the right combination of specials (like missiles, tear gas and fire bombs) and sending wave after wave of your own men to die Zapp Brannigan style, it’s easy to overcome most challenges. Yes, the game does get more difficult as you level up and unlock more difficult bases, but there was never a feeling of accomplishment when I claimed victory at a higher level. There also wasn't a feeling of determination to try again when I lost. Instead the only feeling I got playing through this was a feeling of indifference. [embed]328159:61587:0[/embed] Success in battle rewards players with munitions and cards that range from battle support to perks for your soldiers. The munitions you win are used to build and expand your base. I nicknamed my first base layout "Tila Tequila" because it was small and easy to penetrate. My base grew as I leveled up, but a limited number of build points kept me from creating something that could stand up to player attacks. The number of successful defeats of invading armies didn’t start to grow until I adopted the same bottleneck design that everyone else was using. To be successful, my base had to look just like everyone else's. Guns Up! is free-to-play and one of the first questions I had about this game is if it's actually free-to-play. While I was provided $10 in credit by the publisher for this review, I didn’t find the need to use it until several hours into the game. By that point, I had already grown bored of playing the same goddamn map over and over again and just spent the money because it was something different to do. Players can't spend their way to the perfect base as you can't buy munitions directly, but spending money can help you progress more quickly. Money is converted to gold which can be spent renting soldiers you haven’t unlocked, customizing the colors and logo of your army, and purchasing card packs. You can also spend that money purchasing soldiers you have unlocked as simply unlocking them doesn’t instantly add them to your repertoire. Instead, the game gives you the option to spend a couple bucks worth of gold or an ungodly amount of munitions to get them. It was at level 16 or so that I finally did spend that money because progress had slowed to a crawl. Leveling up was taking forever and expanding my base became too damn expensive. If this game were fun I would have toughed it out. But it’s not fun, so I spent money on XP and munitions boost cards that would make the un-fun game easier to play. These cards, which are also included in a PlayStation Plus bundle (it's free for PS Plus users), killed any incentive for me to take on more challenging bases as defeating a lower level base netted me enough XP and munitions to progress at a steady pace. Okay, that's a lie. The only real incentive I had to continue on after I had seen everything the game had to offer in the first 30 minutes or so was the fact that I foolishly volunteered to review it. Guns Up! is a dull game. It's repetitive, it's tedious, it's digital Ambien. If the thought of a console version of Clash of Clans excites you, you’ll probably have a blast with Guns Up! Me, I can’t wait to delete this off my PS4. [This review is based on a retail build of the free-to-play game. A currency code valued at $10 was provided by the publisher.]
Guns Up! photo
Pew, pew, pfft
I don't know what I've been told. I don't know what I've been told. Free-to-play games leave me mighty cold. Free-to-play games leave me mighty cold. The microtransactions start to sting. The&nbs...

PlayStation VR photo
PlayStation VR

PlayStation VR comes with a 'Wii size' processor box


Notably absent from marketing
Dec 17
// Laura Kate Dale
With retail versions of VR headsets incoming over the next ten months, a lot of eyes are on Sony to start revealing more information regarding the final retail specs of its upcoming PlayStation VR headset. While much is still...

Sony partnership photo
Sony partnership

Kojima chose Sony over 'a lot of offers from overseas companies'


Not worried about Japanese games market
Dec 16
// Steven Hansen
Kojima Productions' first game, when it releases presumed years from now, will be a PlayStation console exclusive thanks to the new studio's partnership with Sony. Studio head Hideo Kojima (have you read his name enough times...
Kojima Productions' photo
Konami still owns the rights
It was announced this morning that Hideo Kojima has finally escaped from the talons of Konami and has formed Kojima Productions, his own independent studio. For its first project, Kojima Productions will be partnering with So...

#PS2PS4 photo
#PS2PS4

Sony's taking requests for PS2 games on the PS4 using #PS2PS4


Bring back Over the Hedge: The Game!
Dec 16
// Joe Parlock
A while ago, Sony began selling emulated PS2 games on the PS4. We’ve already had some great games like Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas and Dark Cloud, but with a huge library of PS2 games out there ripe for the picking, f...
PlayStation Europe photo
PlayStation Europe

PlayStation Europe's buy one, get one free sale isn't as good as it looks


BOGOF? More like bog off...
Dec 12
// Joe Parlock
You may have noticed that Sony is currently running a buy one, get one free sale on the European PlayStation Store. At first glance it looks pretty sweet, with some fairly recent releases included in the deal. Unfortunately, ...
Day of the Tentacle photo
Day of the Tentacle

Day of the Tentacle Remastered's slick interface works flawlessly


Still not quite a mouse, but it's a'ight
Dec 06
// Zack Furniss
When we learned at the PlayStation Experience keynote that Day of the Tentacle Remastered was releasing March 2016, I wrote that it had been twenty years since I had played the original. That would put me at the tender, still...
Final Fantasy VII photo
Final Fantasy VII

Final Fantasy VII Remake will be broken up into episodes


This guy is episodic
Dec 06
// Zack Furniss
After a divisive gameplay reveal at PlayStation Experience (looks cool, I'll play it), we're getting word from the Square Enix that the Final Fantasy VII Remake will be "told across a multi-part series." We don't know ho...
PlayStation Experience photo
PlayStation Experience

PSA: That clear liquid at PlayStation Experience is not breath spray


DO NOT CONSUME
Dec 06
// Zack Furniss
Upon entering PlayStation Experience, there was a chance to get a Sony goodie bag that has items enabling you to further advertise its brand. There's a beanie, a shirt, a poster, and a clear plastic spray bottle with the Sony...
Ace Combat photo
Ace Combat

Dog fighting Ace Combat 7 announced for PS4


At least partially in VR
Dec 05
// Zack Furniss
If you have a jet-shaped hole in your heart, boy oh gee golly gosh do I have news for you. Ace Combat 7 has just been announced for PS4 at the PlayStation Experience in San Francisco. Bandai Namco will be bringing the se...
PlayStation Awards photo
PlayStation Awards

Metal Gear Solid V, GTA V win big at the PlayStation Awards 2015


V has come to...the top sales bracket
Dec 03
// Josh Tolentino
The Game Awards may be coming up soon, but another awards show made minor waves just a few hours ago: Sony's PlayStation Awards, the yearly event hosted by Sony Computer Entertainment Japan and Asia to give a pat on the back ...
Vampyr photo
Vampyr

Life is Strange developer Dontnod talks about its new RPG, Vampyr


Feels very Vampire the Masquerade-y
Dec 03
// Joe Parlock
If there’s one thing you can’t deny about Dontnod, it’s that it's incredibly thematically varied. If it’s not futuristic memory hunters in Remember Me, its hella-rad time-travelling teenagers taking se...
PlayStation 4 photo
PlayStation 4

Research group says millennials prefer PlayStation


Especially on Black Friday
Nov 30
// Mike Cosimano
Shopping research group InfoScout has published its post-Black Friday findings as they relate to video game consoles. As you can see in the chart below, 40% of participating millennials (defined as ages 18-35) buy PlayStation...
PlayStation 4 photo
PlayStation 4

Sony claims PS4 sold around 30 million units


Pictured: the future of PS VR
Nov 25
// Mike Cosimano
According to a press release from Sony, the PlayStation 4 has sold through (read: units actually sold to people, not units shipped to stores) 30.2 million units as of November 22. That's a considerable amount of consoles; for...
Dtoid Gift Guide photo
Dtoid Gift Guide

Destructoid's gift guide for the PlayStation fan


'Tis the season
Nov 24
// Brett Makedonski
It's almost December, and you know what that means: Frenzied shopping for your loved ones (and maybe a few things for yourself). Is there someone on your list who you know is a big PlayStation fan, but you're at a loss for what to get them? Don't worry; we got your back. Here are some of the hottest gifts that PlayStation owners will be sure to love.
DOA Xtreme 3 photo
DOA Xtreme 3

Plans to localize Dead or Alive Xtreme 3 in the West may be DOA


Sad tromboner
Nov 24
// CJ Andriessen
Are you a western gamer interested in Dead or Alive Xtreme 3? Well then you best get your ass to an import website because it doesn't look like the game will be making it our way. Even after the publisher said fan demand coul...
Cat games photo
Cat games

VERY IMPORTANT: PlayStation VR has a game where you play as a cat


Smitten by the kitten
Nov 03
// Brett Makedonski
Thus far, Sony's South Korea presser has been predictably light on news. Shu has some sweet checkered pants. There was a lengthy dubstep dance routine. Only 3,200 people are watching on Twitch. PlayStation VR has hogged the s...
Sony presser photo
Sony presser

Shuhei Yoshida has cute checkered pants


I'd like a pair
Nov 03
// Brett Makedonski
PlayStation's holding a press briefing in South Korea right now. It's hard to tell what's happening. People are speaking in Japanese and the show's being translated into Korean. I speak neither of those languages. The show ki...
PS presser photo
PS presser

PlayStation's holding another press briefing this week


Three in under three months
Nov 02
// Brett Makedonski
After skipping out on gamescom, Sony took center stage at both Tokyo Game Show and Paris Games Week within the past couple months. Those major showings seemingly weren't enough as PlayStation has yet another press briefing up...
Troy Baker photo
Troy Baker

Watch Troy Baker show off his voice acting skills


We finally see Baker and North together!
Nov 02
// Joe Parlock
A few weeks ago, Eurogamer saw Official Voice of Everybody Ever™ Nolan North perform the voices of a few of his many, many characters. Now, we get the Official Voice of Everybody Nolan North Doesn’t Voice™ ...
Tomba 2 photo
Tomba 2

Tomba 2 is back on PSN this week (Update)


This time in English
Nov 01
// Kyle MacGregor
[Update: MonkeyPaw Games tells us "those who have the Japanese version will be able to upgrade to English.] Tomba 2: The Evil Swine Return is making a comeback this week on PlayStation Network. The sequel wound up being Tomba...
Until Dawn photo
Until Dawn

That Until Dawn virtual reality DLC is real


Real scary, probably
Oct 27
// Brett Makedonski
This news is a little bit old because we reported it last week, but now it's confirmed. Super scary horror game Until Dawn is getting an add-on, and that DLC will be playable on PlayStation VR. The expansion is called&n...
Dreams photo
Dreams

LittleBigPlanet developer explains how its new PS4 game works


Also Tearaway developer!
Oct 27
// Steven Hansen
Media Molecule (LittleBigPlanet, Tearaway) has shown how its interesting new game, Dreams, works with a live demo of the game in alpha state that included plenty of rat possession. Every player creates a custom Imp who follo...
Deception photo
Deception

Tecmo's Deception returns next week on PSN


It's a trap!
Oct 24
// Kyle MacGregor
Tecmo's Deception: Invitation to Darkness is being re-released on PlayStation Network next week in North America, according to the latest episode of the PlayStation Blogcast. Ahem. Before we go any further, let me just warn y...
Uncharted photo
Uncharted

Nolan North reckons you don't want an Uncharted movie


Is he right?
Oct 12
// Vikki Blake
Nathan Drake's voice actor, Nolan North, reckons we don't want to see an Uncharted movie. In an interview with GamesNewsOfficial, North said that fans are so invested with the Drake we know and love (and lust after - although that might just be me), "no matter who's the star of it," we just don't want a movie. 
PS4 price cut photo
PS4 price cut

PS4 gets official price drop in USA and Canada


Just in time for Christmas!
Oct 08
// Mike Cosimano
Today, Sony announced a permanent price cut for the PlayStation 4 in the United States and Canada. The system will be available for $349 USD in the US and $429 CAD in Canada, and will apply to all the upcoming holiday bu...
Sports photo
Sports

Street Racquetball is a real game coming to PSN


'FOULT'
Oct 03
// Kyle MacGregor
Street Racquetball, one of the more obscure titles in D3 Publisher's budget-priced Simple series, is coming to PlayStation Network next Tuesday, October 6, as a PSone Classic. Mmm, yes, classic. In Japan, Street Racquetball&n...
Mega Man Legends photo
Mega Man Legends

Mega Man Legends heading to PSN next Tuesday


Take that, Red Ash?
Sep 22
// Mike Cosimano
Today, Capcom announced a PSN port for original PlayStation classic Mega Man Legends. It will be re-released next Tuesday for $9.99 and work on PlayStation 3 and PS Vita. PSP owners are out of luck, and not just because ...

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