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Thread: Did anyone here ever buy UMD movies for the PSP?

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    Pac-Man (Level 10) gbpxl's Avatar
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    Default Did anyone here ever buy UMD movies for the PSP?

    If so, is there any real advantage of them in terms of exclusive content like commentary or special features? Unique packaging? Anything that was on UMD but not on DVD or Blu Ray? This has gotta be the most pointless home video format I am familiar with. No offense to anyone who bought into it when it was released. Why watch a film on your PSP if you had access to a television or watching films online on your computer monitor?

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    Alex (Level 15) Custom rank graphic
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    Quote Originally Posted by gbpxl View Post
    This has gotta be the most pointless home video format I am familiar with.
    What about the GBA video cartridges? Or studio films released on Video 8 format?

    Quote Originally Posted by gbpxl View Post
    Why watch a film on your PSP if you had access to a television or watching films online on your computer monitor?
    Why play games on the PSP if you had access to a home console and television or a computer? It's all about portability. Of course this didn't work out as it's more convenient to just buy a portable DVD player and watch movies you already own, or just copy a video file onto the PSP and watch that instead of buying a UMD of the movie. This came out shortly before smartphones which made the whole experience obsolete.

    It also reminds me of those MP4/MP3 players that were available for a short time, it seemed really convenient to have a portable video player back then, if only I could justify the high price at the time. They're all worthless now as smartphones can do the job.

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    I'm of the stance that no one ever actually had interest, it was just Sony basically bribing studios to push it, and thus stores felt like they had to carry them. Once stores stopped having dedicated UMD movie sections (Yes, they existed) the format was toast.

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    Pac-Man (Level 10) gbpxl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gameguy View Post
    What about the GBA video cartridges? Or studio films released on Video 8 format?


    Why play games on the PSP if you had access to a home console and television or a computer? It's all about portability. Of course this didn't work out as it's more convenient to just buy a portable DVD player and watch movies you already own, or just copy a video file onto the PSP and watch that instead of buying a UMD of the movie. This came out shortly before smartphones which made the whole experience obsolete.

    It also reminds me of those MP4/MP3 players that were available for a short time, it seemed really convenient to have a portable video player back then, if only I could justify the high price at the time. They're all worthless now as smartphones can do the job.
    Here's my problem with that. I can still enjoy a video game that was made for a tiny screen. I don't have as much enjoyment for a movie that was designed to be displayed on a 20 foot screen. Home theaters are a compromise but the PSP screen is too much of a downsize for me

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    Pac-Man (Level 10) gbpxl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tupin View Post
    I'm of the stance that no one ever actually had interest, it was just Sony basically bribing studios to push it, and thus stores felt like they had to carry them. Once stores stopped having dedicated UMD movie sections (Yes, they existed) the format was toast.
    Yeah it's almost like they told them to make those UMDs just so that Sony could sell more units by exclaiming "see, it can play video games, music, AND movies". I dont know anyone who really bought them. I was buying DVDs at the time and watching them on my either my 360 or my PS2

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tupin View Post
    I'm of the stance that no one ever actually had interest, it was just Sony basically bribing studios to push it, and thus stores felt like they had to carry them. Once stores stopped having dedicated UMD movie sections (Yes, they existed) the format was toast.
    That make sense, I really don't remember anyone wanting to buy them back when the system was new. Maybe once they were on clearance people started buying them up, but not for much money at all. People barely bought games for the system nevermind movies.

    So besides Beta and UMD, were there any other formats Sony tried to push that ultimately failed? I'm surprised Bluray won out.

    Quote Originally Posted by gbpxl View Post
    Here's my problem with that. I can still enjoy a video game that was made for a tiny screen. I don't have as much enjoyment for a movie that was designed to be displayed on a 20 foot screen. Home theaters are a compromise but the PSP screen is too much of a downsize for me
    I have no problem watching videos on my smartphone, including movies. The only reason movies are shown on such a big screen is so you can show it to a large room full of people all at once, nobody has a living room as big as a theater. You don't need a big screen when you're sitting so close to it.

    The main issue with the PSP is that most people who bought one back then just used it for emulation or modding, few people bought commercial games for it or commercial movies. Why buy a new port of an old PS1 game when you can just emulate the actual PS1 game on it for free? Or emulate classic consoles on it for free? You could easily download video files back then so there was little reason to buy those proprietary UMD discs.

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    Strawberry (Level 2) AdamAnt316's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gameguy View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by gbpxl View Post
    This has gotta be the most pointless home video format I am familiar with.
    What about the GBA video cartridges? Or studio films released on Video 8 format?
    To me, that title goes to the VideoNow players, especially the monochrome models like this one. Ultra low res video, mono sound, and cannot play anything resembling a conventional DVD or even CD (the "PVD" discs are 4.5" in diameter, so a full 5" CD won't fit without modifying the player). Apparently, one of the later models could even play rudimentary games included on some of the PVDs, making themselves a sort of inverse PSP. Boggles the mind..........

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gameguy View Post
    That make sense, I really don't remember anyone wanting to buy them back when the system was new. Maybe once they were on clearance people started buying them up, but not for much money at all. People barely bought games for the system nevermind movies.

    So besides Beta and UMD, were there any other formats Sony tried to push that ultimately failed? I'm surprised Bluray won out.


    I have no problem watching videos on my smartphone, including movies. The only reason movies are shown on such a big screen is so you can show it to a large room full of people all at once, nobody has a living room as big as a theater. You don't need a big screen when you're sitting so close to it.

    The main issue with the PSP is that most people who bought one back then just used it for emulation or modding, few people bought commercial games for it or commercial movies. Why buy a new port of an old PS1 game when you can just emulate the actual PS1 game on it for free? Or emulate classic consoles on it for free? You could easily download video files back then so there was little reason to buy those proprietary UMD discs.
    Why bring this burrito up to the register and pay for it when I can walk out of the store with it for free? Why pay to see the show when I can sneak in for free? Really why do anything when you dont have to right?

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    Quote Originally Posted by AdamAnt316 View Post
    To me, that title goes to the VideoNow players, especially the monochrome models like this one. Ultra low res video, mono sound, and cannot play anything resembling a conventional DVD or even CD (the "PVD" discs are 4.5" in diameter, so a full 5" CD won't fit without modifying the player). Apparently, one of the later models could even play rudimentary games included on some of the PVDs, making themselves a sort of inverse PSP. Boggles the mind..........
    Of course it's by Tiger, most of what they made was underwhelming. Although I could actually see an intended market for the VideoNow, it's a cheap durable video player for toddlers. If you were a parent and didn't want to give something fragile and expensive to a toddler, this was an option. Something like the PSP was expensive and fragile if dropped.

    So much has changed by today, giving a small toddler a tablet or an old smartphone is pretty common. Something with a decent screen resolution isn't extremely expensive.

    Quote Originally Posted by gbpxl View Post
    Why bring this burrito up to the register and pay for it when I can walk out of the store with it for free? Why pay to see the show when I can sneak in for free? Really why do anything when you dont have to right?
    Are you going to focus on morals or acknowledge what happened in reality? In reality, back when the PSP was still available new(around 10-15 years ago) most people just bought it to mod as a portable emulation system. The hardware sold very well, the games generally didn't. Look back to early youtube reviews on the PSP, plenty of people brought up how great it is for emulation, but commented how it was otherwise underwhelming compared to the GBA and DS. If you were just buying a portable system for the exclusive games, get a Nintendo system instead.

    I was in high school when it launched, and mostly saw it used in college. When it first launched a few early adopters were playing actual PSP games. Over the next few years people were mostly playing old SNES games like Super Metroid on it. As for playing PS1 games, most people back then would back up games they already owned rather than just download everything as bandwidth was limited and much slower back then. Plus PS1 games were dirt cheap as the PS2 was still popular with the PS3 just released. With emulating in general, people would download ROMs as most people lacked the hardware to backup their own games, and they weren't available for sale anyway in any official capacity at the time. This was all before the Virtual Console existed and old PC games were considered abandonware, they only became available for sale again because so much demand was shown for these old titles that were already long out of print and otherwise unavailable.

    I remember youtube videos showing off the PSP running LucasArts adventure games with ScummVM, or emulating TurboDuo games like Rondo of Blood before the official PSP release was available. The hardware looked impressive for homebrew at the time. I don't recall many people pirating PSP games, most people would just use it for emulating other systems. When I saw people playing the system in public like on a bus, it was all emulation. If the system was limited to just legitimate PSP games and no emulation was possible, the system wouldn't have sold well. Nintendo was just better with games at the time.

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    All that pops in to my head when I think of UMDs is seeing a shopping cart full of UMD movies and TV shows at Fry's Electronics near the register with a sign saying "all UMDs $1 each". I went back to that store a week later and the volume in the cart wasn't all that much lower.

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    I bought them back at launch and was pretty amazed by the video quality. I remember watching Spiderman and Underworld: Evolution on it. The packaging looked great imo, I really liked the cases. Some films were advertised as having extra features not on the DVD.

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    Quote Originally Posted by gbpxl View Post
    Why bring this burrito up to the register and pay for it when I can walk out of the store with it for free? Why pay to see the show when I can sneak in for free? Really why do anything when you dont have to right?
    Back before piracy, games on the PSP actually sold well. No one bought games when they could get them for free because it was so easy to pirate games. Take a look at Liberty City Stories then look at Vice City Stories. You could argue that Liberty City Stories sold because it included a save data hack, but, Vice City stories also sold over five million. The original Dissidia sold two million. There were a lot of games that sold well, but the more it became easier to add CFW to the system, the less and less games sold and the less developers wanted to even release anything to the system in the west. JP they still did as Japanese still bought games.

    We could probably argue that the Vita despite not being hacked until very very very late in its life, years, didn't receive support because developers were afraid their sales would be lost due to CFW.

    //

    To be on topic though, I don't watch portables to watch anything. To me it's a novelty and nothing more. If I do watch anything on my phone it's only because I'm somewhere with nothing to do and have my phone on me or I'm in the bathroom. If I need to look up anything I'll do it on my PC. I have like, six apps on my home page, everything else is pre installed.
    Everything in the above post is opinion unless stated otherwise.

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    From what I could find online, The PSP launched in North America in March 2005. The PSP was first hacked in May 2005. Within a few months of that homebrew and piracy was already possible and happening. There were various ways to run unsigned code from that point on but custom firmware was available by July 2006. It's not like piracy wasn't possible for a long time, the system was cracked wide open almost immediately after launch.

    https://en.wikibooks.org/wiki/PSP/Homebrew_History

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