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Wishlist: Public PSN Web Service APIs |

I’d like Sony to make public web service APIs available:

  • Play time data broken down by game, date, and geographic region. In other words, people should be able to write applications that could query the number of hours played for game X, in month Y, in US (or Japan or Europe).
  • PSN Demo Download and Purchase Stats broken down by game, date, and geographic region.
  • Secure access to user stats: playtime by game, trophy data, etc. This should require authentication so that people can query their own data but not data on other people.
  • Game Specific data: Specifically, I’d love to be able to query data about LittleBigPlanet levels. It looks like this data is already available via screen scraping on LittleBigWorkshop, but it would be nice if there was a cleaner and more comrehensive API to access this data.

Not only would these features be really cool for users and techie programmer types, but this would benefit Sony by building the PSN community. Numerous user maintained and user promoted web sites would spring up around this and that would certainly drive interest in PSN overall.

Why wouldn’t Sony do this? Would data-sensitivity issues prevent Sony from doing something like this? Does Sony just not “get” this kind of thing? Or maybe this just isn’t as great an idea as I think it would be?

  • Well I am at a loss as to exactly how this would benefit anybody except perhaps game making companies. What exatcly would other gamers get out of being able to see, that I have played Oblivion for 105 hours?

    Ok to be fair, and because I just reread the post I can se that it might be interesting to the more curios people to be able to see, that a small percentage in Europe are stil playing Heavenly Sword. But I still can’t see why it is anything so important that Sony should put money into making those things.

  • mikael

    I think it is a great idea and I know I would spend hours at the website that figured out how to best present the data.

    Whether that is valuable for Sony or not is of course another question.

  • Darrin

    Tons of gamers would love to read these kinds of numbers, particularly if there were several quality user-made sites that had good interfaces.

    And Sony would benefit by having an increased community around PSN and increased customer loyalty. I also can’t imagine that these interfaces would be terribly hard to build. Building an actual AAA game is *far* more difficult.

  • John

    This would probably just amplify herd mentality, gamers shying away from the less played games, making them even less played, etc. This has been happening again and again everytime that kind of stats was available.

  • I agree with Josh on the herd mentality 🙂

  • This goes a bit into the privacy issue of everyone. It’s one thing to boast about all of your trophies or achievements. It’s another for your dad or Mom to go online and find out that you’ve played 100 hours of SOCOM. What I do with my time is my business and no one else’s.

  • darrin

    mcloki, they definitely would need to authenticate a particular user’s data. Otherwise, scenarios like you describe would be a major showstopper.

    Good point on the amplifying herd mentality. I’m not sure if I agree though. The Wii has the most herd mentality culture surrounding it and that has nothing to do with stats.

  • I think it would be fun to have an iPhone app that lets me see which of my friends are online.

  • Henning, the R2 stat page displays your friends list (very cool), so maybe you could browse to that page with your phone?