PSP UMD games could be re-released on NGP game cards

Backwards compatibility with legacy game formats isn't the sort of make-or-break feature that determines the fate of a new hardware system, but it does score major bonus points with the manufacturer's fan base when it does work -- and elicits plenty of groans when it doesn't. When it comes to Sony's next (generation) portable the answer to "will it play my UMD games" is clearly "no" -- not even the PSP Go supports the original hardware's disc format -- but UMD owners are still hoping the company will do something about it.

Speaking with Japanese tech site Gigazine (as translated by Andriasang), a PlayStation representative reiterated that NGP will support the growing list of PSP games available in digital format from the PlayStation Store. Unsurprisingly, Sony has no plans to develop an attachable "UMD reader" for NGP (despite filing a patent that leaves open the possibility), and the UMD-to-digital "good will program" has been dead for 16 months now.

Gigazine does report that Sony mentioned plans to re-release original PSP games on the NGP's new game media (flash memory-based cards), though the representative did not detail the possibility further. Certainly, it would be a no-brainer -- even if card-based re-releases could generate some "ill will" from existing UMD owners -- and the expanded storage size of the proposed new card format suggests that old PSP games could be sold in single-card collections or added to NGP game cards as bonuses. Or how about PSP re-releases with "NGP" treatment? Admit it -- you'd buy Peace Walker again if dual-analog and touch controls were added, not to mention some MGS4-ish graphics.

This article was originally published on Joystiq.