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What the Hell, Sony? PS4 "backups" suck

Illustration for article titled What the Hell, Sony? PS4 backups suck

PS4 seems to be a system designed completely around PSN and, more specifically, a PS+ subscription. Which could be great for me, a PS+ holder, but not so great for my kids.

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So, I got a launch day PS4. And I got it from Amazon. My PS4 is wonderful! ...until 30 minutes into gameplay, the fan kicks on super loud. Every. time. I tried calling Sony support, but the line was backed up, and after an hour, well, I finally hung up. After about a week of calling and hanging up after a good period of time (because, well, I have kids to care after), I finally got through! And Sony sent out a box to place my PS4 in.

I finally got around to boxing it up this past Sunday. First thing I wanted to do was backup my system. Only I couldn't find a backup option. I did find an option to copy my saves to a USB device, but no backup option like the PS3 had. You know the one: Plug in a USB drive, select "backup" and the PS3 then throws all my user profiles, demos, saved games, and game installs onto a HDD.

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PS4 gives no such option. In a day and age where Sony & MS (and possibly even Nintendo) are trying to push digital as a viable option—and in that same day and age where ISPs are getting rid of unlimited data consumption and placing restrictive caps, I'm being told I will have to re download all my games onto replacement PS4? Seriously Sony?

But it gets even better: I created a profile for my two boys, age 9 & 7. They wanted to play the game Knack, and so I created a new profile for them, because what games (outside of Nintendo) want to do "save slots" anymore? Sony decided that I cannot backup their saves to USB. And why can't I? Because they don't have a PSN account.

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Huh? What? Why do I need a PSN account to save games to USB? I'm now on the phone with Sony support again, and there is no option to get around that except through the hope of creating a "sub account" from my PSN account. So I go to create a sub account for each of my kids, because Sony will not allow them to use my PSN account just so I can backup their saved games to a USB device.

First hurdle I encounter when creating a subaccount: users email address. Email address? I'm creating an account just to backup saved games to a USB device, and now my 9 & 7 year old kids need an email address? They don't have, haven't expressed any interest in wanting, and flat out don't need an email address at this time in there life, but now that they want to keep a copy of their Knack save, suddenly they have to have one. (I created an email alias to get around this that points to my email.)

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Second hurdle I encountered was that I now had to create a username for these two new accounts. It's not really a hurdle, but a sore point: PSN username's can't be changed. All I want to do—again—is backup my kids saved games before I send in my PS4 for repair. Now I'm having to create their PSN username, and as they can't change it, I'll be blamed for whatever stupid name I create. Thanks Sony.

So now, when my replacement PS4 arrives, I'll be able to copy over my saves, their saves (with fresh new PSN logins!) and redownload all my PSN downloads. (Did I mention my ISP already hates me for constantly hitting my limit?)

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All because the PS4 doesn't do what the PS3 could easily do.

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