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Some video games are suddenly ‘expiring’ on PS3 and Vita consoles

The games are showing a December, 1969 expiration date, making them unplayable.

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Image: KnowTechie

Many gamers are starting to notice something weird on PS3 and PS Vita consoles. Several video games on the classic consoles have been “expiring” with expiration dates from decades ago. This ultimately renders the games unplayable on the consoles.

This issue was first noticed by Twitter user FooseTV and reported by Kotaku. When FooseTV tried to load up the classic game, Chrono Cross on their PS3 and Vita, the game would not boot up and showed an expiration date of 12/31/1969.

Yes, that does seem like a very strange expiration date for a game that came out in the late 1990s.

But this isn’t the only instance like this. Additionally, similar expiration dates were found for games like Final Fantasy VI, Rune Factory: Oceans, and even the Chrono Cross predecessor, Chrono Trigger. One Reddit user even claims that their entire library of digital titles is showing as “expired.”

As of right now, it’s unclear exactly why these video games are expiring. However, Ian Walker at Kotaku speculated that the issue could have something to do with the Unix epoch.

Unix epoch is an arbitrary date and time set by engineers as the beginning of time for the operating system. In fact, the Unix epoch is midnight UTC on January 1, 1970, a date which is very close to the new expiration date found on these titles.

Whatever the explanation, this has to be extremely frustrating for PS3 and PS Vita gamers. We knew Sony was limiting the PlayStation Store on these devices, but this is making already owned games unplayable.

Hopefully, this is just a bug and PlayStation addresses the issue quickly. Because right now, this is a prime example of why buying digital-only content can be a dangerous path.

Have any thoughts on this? Let us know down below in the comments or carry the discussion over to our Twitter or Facebook.

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Staff writer at KnowTechie. Alex has two years of experience covering all things technology, from video games to electric cars. He's a gamer at heart, with a passion for first-person shooters and expansive RPGs. Shoot him an email at alex@knowtechie.com

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