Sony is facing a lawsuit over its restrictions for purchasing digital games, which is now limited to the PlayStation Store. Sony used to allow sales of digital versions of its PlayStation games through third-party retail partners. Such as Amazon.
But since 2019 the company has scaled back digital game sales to just one store front. Its own. For the past couple of years, the only place you could really buy digital games for the PlayStation console was through the PlayStation Store website or on the console itself.
You can still sometimes find digital versions of PlayStation games being sold outside of PSN. Through websites like CDkeys.com. Though at current the only game it has on sale is God Of War, a game from 2018. So for the most part Sony’s PlayStation Store remains the only place where you can buy the majority of games available on the platform in a digital format.
The Sony lawsuit alleges the PlayStation Store is a monopoly
According to the report from Bloomberg, the plaintiffs in the case (Caccuri Vs. Sony Interactive Entertainment LLC, 3:21-cv-03361, US District Court Northern District of California) which are customers who use Sony’s PlayStation consoles, the PlayStation Store is a monopoly. Because Sony doesn’t allow sales of digital games outside of PSN.
The lawsuit then further explains that this gives Sony a competitive edge. Enabling it to charge more money for digital versions of games through its own storefront when physical copies can be picked up for much cheaper.
This isn’t necessarily untrue. Sony does charge more for the digital versions of some games. Whereas you can generally get a physical copy of the same game for a lot less if you buy through Amazon. One good example is Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice Game Of The Year Edition. Which costs $42.50 on Amazon and $42.99 at Target.
Meanwhile the digital copy of the game on the PlayStation Store is available at the full retail price of $59.99.
Sony hasn’t commented on its reasons for limiting the sales of digital PlayStation games to its own store. But whatever the reasons, some customers aren’t happy.
The company is also facing a separate lawsuit for issues with its latest console, the PS5. In that lawsuit, Sony is being accused of consumer fraud over the DualSense controller for the drift issues many consumers who bought the PS5 have been experiencing.