Digital-Only PS3 Games to Play Before the PlayStation Store Shuts Down

As many PlayStation fans may be aware, the PlayStation Store for PS3, PSP, and PS Vita will be shutting down this year. Starting with the PS3 and PSP version on July 2, the PlayStation Store will no longer be accessible for fans to make new purchases. PlayStation fans will still be able to download games and content they have already purchased for the foreseeable future though, thankfully. The following is a list of the best games available exclusively on the PlayStation Store that PlayStation fans should be sure to consider purchasing before they are no longer available.

As a note, some truly incredible and award-winning games were released as digital only-exclusives to the PS3, like JourneyFlowerSound Shapes, and The Unfinished Swan, but those games have since been ported to the PS4. Some of the below games also have technically had a physical release in the Best of PlayStation Network Vol. 1 collection, but copies of that are near impossible to find now for a fair price.

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Unfortunately, some great PS3 digital-only games have already been delisted in years past, but are still playable for those who purchased them previously.

Among these lost games are perhaps two of the PS3 era’s more famous digital games, Noby Noby Boy and Fat Princess. Noby Noby Boy, from the mind of Katamari Damacy creator Keita Takahashi, was a game where players played as a strange stretchy worm-boy that featured an online component where everyone in the world’s score contributed to furthering the story and unlocking new levels. The game is still downloadable for those who already purchased it, though there is nothing left to accomplish since the community completed the game’s mission in 2015.

Fat Princess was a real-time strategy/capture the flag hybrid game where the primary goal was to steal the opposing team’s titular princess or make it harder for the other team to steal yours by feeding her lots of cake. The game was delisted from the store in 2019, but long-time PlayStation Plus subscribers may have been in luck, as Fat Princess was free for the month of July in 2016. Those looking for fun couch co-op may want to see if they have this game in their library.

God of War and Twisted Metal creator David Jaffe created one of PlayStation’s first major digital games with Calling All Cars! for the PS3 in 2007, less than one year after the PS3 launched. The game is reminiscent of a top-down Twisted Metal, except in this game players are bounty hunters competing against one another to see who can capture the most criminals and return them to places like police stations or paddy wagons for points. The cel-shaded art style still holds up in 2021, but the online component, sadly, does not. The servers for Calling All Cars! were shut down in 2010, but the game is still a blast to play with up to three friends on the couch.

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Echochrome 1 released in 2008 for both PS3 and PSP. This puzzle game was developed by Sony’s beloved but newly “restructured” Japan Studio and has players solving M.C. Escher style platforming puzzles. The game was incredibly well-received for its intelligent yet accessible puzzle design, as was its 2010 sequel Echochrome 2, though the second game requires the PlayStation Move and PlayStation Eye camera. There is also an equally as good spin-off exclusive to PSP and Vita called Echoshift that features time related puzzles.

Bizarrely not included in the psychical Ratchet and Clank Collection of HD remasters for PS3, Ratchet: Deadlocked is the fourth and final of the PS2-era Ratchet games. Deadlocked tells the story of Ratchet and Clank being abducted, separated, and forced to participate in a deadly alien gameshow. The HD remaster of Deadlocked never received a physical release, so this game is a must-buy for completionist fans who want to play all of the Ratchet games in HD. Alternatively, those looking to catch up on the story of the Lombax and the Warbot before Rift Apart arrives on the PS5 this summer may want to check out Deadlocked as well.

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Tokyo Jungle is a bit of an indie classic, though Sony and its Japan Studio helped develop and publish it. This character action game takes place in a world where humanity has mysteriously disappeared, and animals run wild on the streets of Tokyo. Players take control over different animals like lions, hyenas, beagles, dear, and more in different story vignettes chronicling their survival. The game was fairly well-received when it released in 2012, but has gone on to become a bit of a cult-classic since.

The PixelJunk series is still active, with PixelJunk Raiders having just released in March, but three titles from the series created by original Star Fox developer Dylan Cuthbert are still exclusive to PS3. The first ever PixelJunk game, Racers, is a top-down arcade racing game that released in 2007 and had an updated release in 2010 with PixelJunk Racers: 2nd Lap. PixelJunk 4am is a kind of interactive music DJ-ing game that requires the Move wand and PlayStation Eye camera. The best received of the three PS3-exclusvie Pixeljunkgames is Sidescroller, a side scrolling shooter a la Gradius, released in 2011.

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Trash Panic is the third and final game to involve Sony’s Japan Studio on this list. This puzzle game drew comparisons to Tetris when it first came out in 2009, except instead of colorful blocks, players crush garbage. The game gets much more complicated than Tetris, however, as the game quickly introduces different kinds of garbage and different means of dealing with all of it, like fire and chemical substances. Trash can also be smashed by gravity or heavier trash and some items decompose naturally over time. Those looking for a frantic and complex Tetris­-like experience should buy this one off the PlayStation Store before July 2.

Developer Drinkbox Studios might be known for its fantastic luchador Metroidvania games, Guacamelee 1 and 2, but before that, the developer’s first game was Tales from Space: About a Blob. The game has players assume the role of a sentient blob who needs to escape the clutches of an evil scientist and save its fellow blobs in a level-based action platformer.

The game was praised for its unique art style (something that all subsequent Drinkbox games would also be praised for), as well as the blob’s creative abilities that enabled it to become magnetic, electric, and more. About A Blob received a sequel, Mutant Blobs Attack, which came to came to multiple platforms, including the Nintendo Switch, but the only way to play the first About a Blob is through buying it digitally on the PS3 before July 2.

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