[JP PSN] List of Free Play Games for June 2015

Here are the Free Play games for PS+ subscribers for the JP PSN this month:

Available: 3rd June 2015 – 7th July, 2015

PS4:

1) Metal Gear Solid V – Ground Heroes

2) TorqueL

PS3:

1) rain

2) Cloudberry Kingdom

PS Vita:

1) Soul Sacrifice Delta

2) Ore ni tasukete-tte iwaretemo ~ Otsu HD

I’ve been playing this last one a bit, and it’s a pretty interesting little JRPG where you are a NEET who doesn’t like to work, but is suddenly forced to do so when his allowances stop coming suddenly. You have to hire “adventurers” and send them to explore dungeons etc while trying to meet your expenses. Though I guess the most eye-catching titles would be the MGS and Soul Sacrifice Delta. I don’t have any idea about those series though.

As always, once these are gone, they have a very very low chance of coming back as PS+ Free Play games, so get them while you can!

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The case of the PS Vita Memory Card

I have been reading articles on the PS Vita a bit lately, and it seems that the #1 reason why people don’t like the PS Vita, maybe even more than not having many AAA games, is the memory card. I keep hearing how high the cost is compared to a normal SD card and how other consoles support normal SD card etc.

Yes, I’ll admit that the memory card costs a few times more than a normal memory card. But let’s look at my memory card. I currently majorly have the following games installed in it:

1. Totori Atelier Plus ~2.7 GB

2. Minna no Golf ~400 MB for updates

3. NFS: Most Wanted ~1.9 GB

4. Quite a few trial versions (Little big planet, Sen no kiseki etc) ~9 GB

The 32 GB card has 29 GB of accessible space. Of which 15 GB is still free.

Also, I play Minna no golf mainly as well as the other two. I play for about 1h-2h a day in weekdays and 4h or so in weekends.

So thing is, for me, this much games is enough to keep me busy. I’ve decided to stick with this pattern: playing 2-3 games at once.

So, here are the questions that come to my mind:

1. Why do I need multiple memory cards, if at all?

2. What is my HDD storage for?

3. Do I really need to carry several games with me in order to keep myself busy?

Question 3 is mostly individual preference, but a PS Vita game seems to be ~3-4 GB for bigger stuff (PSO2 is 10 Gb though, but the PC setup is 24 GB last time I checked, so…). So on a 32 GB memory card, 6 titles? 7 titles?

My point is, for question 1, I feel that the memory card is a one-time investment. I personally don’t see the need to buy multiple memory cards at all. Here’s what I can easily do:

1. I buy a digital game I feel that is interesting.

2. I keep some 4 GB on my memory card free to download it. For most games, this should suffice.

3. I download the game to it.

4. I use QCMA (recommended) or Sony’s CMA to copy over the games I don’t feel like playing right now to my PC and keep them there. And I load them and substitute them from PC as and when needed. And the QCMA’s Backup Manager makes it really easy to manage the games.

See, I can easily swap games around. HDD space is really really cheap. I back up my PS Vita games on my external HDD or even my PC HDD, and I swap them in and out as needed. I only keep the titles I want to play on my Vita.  I downloaded PSO2 but it takes 10 GB right now and I didn’t feel like playing it now, so it sits as a backup on my external. I’ll maybe load it back in once I’ve finished some of the above titles.

Obviously, I’ll recommend atleast a 32 GB for digital games and all. But this is again a one-time investment.

As for the proprietary stuff, if the memory card actually gives better encryption and protection against piracy, I’m all for it. Here’s a game console that actually requires people to buy games, and there’s ZERO way to pirate that. That’s a huge achievement and many people don’t realize it.

TL;DR: Please stop hating on the Vita just because the memory cards are expensive.

How to use QCMA with USB without problems in Windows

So, I had two ways to back up my data from my PS Vita to PC and vice-versa: Sony’s CMA and the free and open-source QCMA.

I had at first tried QCMA, but since there was no UI option to change the language, had just uninstalled it and installed Sony’s CMA and was okay with it.

But then I thought it might be good for me to try QCMA once too. Besides, the “Backup Manager” is a really cool feature. Kudos to the dev for that!

However, while Sony’s CMA worked out of the box, QCMA gave problems, somewhere in the drivers. It would connect and then disconnect and so on. So I luckily found the proper page on the QCMA thread the /talk forums at wololo, so I read through those, and made QCMA work.

The problem lies with the drivers QCMA installs. It installs an old 2012 driver of libusb32. But that doesn’t sit well with the Vita. So here are the steps to get it up and running:

1. First up, remove Sony’s CMA if you have it installed. These two guys don’t seem to get along, from what I read.

2. Install QCMA by downloading the latest version from wololo.

3. Download zadig from here. This person makes awesome nifty software. Respect. Another of their creation I regularly use is rufus, which is pretty much the best image writer for thumb drives out there.  Be it windows or linux. I highly recommend that as well.

4. Plug in the PS Vita and then launch zadig.

5. Check if the “PS Vita Type B” is shown in the list.

6. If not, go to “Options” –> Check “List all devices”.

7. Once you see the PS Vita B, Right click on the arrow next to the big button, and select “Replace Driver”.

8. Now click “Replace Driver” aka the huge button, twiddle thumbs till it’s done.

9. Once this is done, start QCMA, and then plug the PS Vita back in.

10. It should detect the device properly and now you can copy it.

11. In case you’re on a lower firmware and the Vita asks you to update the system software, follow this guide after doing step 9.

Tips:

* If the Vita is not detected at all for some reason on the PC, it might be that something in the Vita side got stuck. So please restart the Vita and then try again. It worked for me.

Sources: This thread here, particularly this post and this post. Thanks to codestation for the help!

On another note, for the PS+ list of June, there are a few titles announced today, but the PS+ site says the next announcement is on 8th June, so I’ll hold it off until that.

[JP PSN] List of Free Play PS+ Games for May 2015

Period: 2015/05/07~2015/06/02 (mostly)

So, I’ve been looking at quite a few sites these few days, but I was unable to find any site that lists JP PS+ Games each month. Except the official site here, of course.

So I decided to try listing the games that are free for the month from that page. I don’t know how long this is possible, but won’t hurt to try.

Please note that if you miss any games in the list, the chances of it being offered again are very very slim. So don’t forget to buy them for free while the offer lasts!

Free Play Games:

PS4:

1) Trials Fusion

2) Hohokumu (ホホクム)

3) Tower of Guns

PS3:

1) Hohokumu (ホホクム)

2) Tower of Guns

3) Soul Caliber II HD Online

4) Utawarerumono ~Chiriyuku mono he no komoriuta~

5) Brothers ~The Tale of Two Sons~ (Futari no Musuko no monogatari)

PS Vita:

1) Hohokumu (ホホクム)

2) Totori no Atelier Plus ~Arland no Renkinjutsushi 2~

3) Utawarerumono Portable Aquaprice 2800

4) Chaos Rings Omega

5) Chaos Rings

So that’s 3 games for PS4, 5 for PS3 and PS Vita each.

A good friend recommended me Totori no Atelier when I told him I bought a PS Vita, and luckily it’s Free Play for this month’s PS+. I’m really loving it so far.

Why I run PS Vita on the latest firmware

When I first purchased my PS Vita, it came with firmware version 2.60. I had the following options:

1. Stick to offline, manually upgrade to 3.18, buy Hatsune Miku Project Diva Final, get TN-V and play the PSP games.

2. Upgrade to latest firmware (3.51 right now) and go online.

I chose the  2nd one. To put it in the words of an awesome person whom I respect more than anyone: “You bought this knowing that you’ll have to buy your own games, right? So you already know what to do.” Simple thought. Yet very true. I had bought the PS Vita so I could play PSV games on it, games made to take advantage of that gorgeous 5″ OLED screen, and I was mentally prepared to go this route. Oh, and I also have a PSP so I can play those titles anytime I want.

I also knew that sticking to a lower firmware and/or looking for and running exploits would mean playing a cat-and-mouse game. I buy an exploit game for firmware x.xx, and run PSP games on it, and then it is patched in the next firmware upgrade. So I’m cut off from PSN at that point on. Again till the next one comes. I’d rather not be involved in such a stressful game, and just enjoy my games while taking advantage of the latest and greatest it has to offer. Also, I have a PS+ subscription that literally makes this moot.

So I’m happily sitting on 3.51 and busying myself playing Minna no golf (came with the pack), followed by Atelier Totori (from PS+) and then NFS: Most Wanted further down the line (it’s 497 JPY in the JP PSN Store, so couldn’t resist). Much more peace-of-mind than worrying about blocking updates or spoofing versions etc etc.