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Sony confirms plans to remove full game digital download codes from retail sale

Sony Interactive Entertainment has confirmed it will no longer sell full game digital download codes via high street and online retailers.

Twitter Wario64 shared the news after obtaining a memo circulated to all GameStop staff. It confirmed after April 1st, 2019, digital games will only be purchasable via the PlayStation Store, although retailers will still be able to sell gift cards for DLC and PSN credit.

Retailers will be expected to deactivate all codes by the close of the month, although codes for Days Gone and Mortal Kombat 11, presumably due to their imminent release dates, will continue to be honoured for one week after their respective release dates.


“I can confirm that as of April 1, 2019, we will no longer be offering full games through SIE’s Global Digital at Retail program. The decision was made in order to align key businesses globally,” a SIE spokesperson told GI.biz.

“To support full games and premium editions, SIE will introduce increased denominations at select retailers. DLC, add-ons, virtual currency, and season passes will still be available.”

The memo further adds that “guests with reservations on full game digital versions of PS4 games that release after April 1st, 2019 should be encouraged to switch their reservation to a physical version of the game”.

This isn’t the first big shake-up from Sony we’ve seen, as it’s already confirmed that it will not be attending this year’s E3 – the company’s first absence in the expo’s 24-year history. Sony’s announcement came in the wake of the cancellation of last year’s PlayStation Experience, too, the fan event usually held in December. It’s thought the decision not to appear at either show could be because the hardware developer is holding back plans to announce its next-generation console.

Sony recently streamed its inaugural State of Play show, a new streamed marketing presentation designed to deliver updates directly to fans in the style of competitor shows, Nintendo Direct and Inside Xbox. It announced a slew of new VR titles, and confirmed Sony’s PlayStation VR system has hit 4.2 million global sales earlier this month.

About Vikki Blake

It took 15 years of civil service monotony for Vikki to crack and switch to writing about games. She has since become an experienced reporter and critic working with a number of specialist and mainstream outlets in both the UK and beyond.

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