Hacking The PlayStation Classic To Include More Games Is Easier Than Expected

Joining the mini-console market, led right now by Nintendo, Sony released the PlayStation Classic at the start of December.

And it *should* have been a joy to play, like those NES and SNES Classic systems, which boast famous titles like the original Super Mario and Donkey Kong.

Sadly for Sony fans, it wasn't. Multiple core PS1 games, responsible for building the 1994-launched console's astounding reputation, were missing. We're talking about you, Tomb Raider, Silent Hill, and Gran Turismo. You can read our full rundown of the PlayStation Classic here.

But for those who already own a PS Classic and know its ins and outs, and are looking to 'improve' the miniature machine, console hacker yifanlu may have the answer.

As reported by Ars Technica, yifanlu - who also hacked the NES and SNES Classic systems - proved how easy it is to access the inner workings of the PS Classic, and ultimately use it to play games that aren't included in its 20-title roster.

Instead of storing it privately, Sony reportedly keep the key to decoding the PlayStation Classic's firmware within the device. Usually, code that runs through the console is encrypted, to block users from altering it. But, as yifanlu discovered, the key to tamper with the Sony device can be utilised by anyone with a bit of know how, by copying it to a PC.

The PlayStation Classic can be hacked. Credit: Sony
The PlayStation Classic can be hacked. Credit: Sony

"There really isn't any security on the device at all," yifanlu told Kotaku. "Sony managed to accidentally include their firmware update private keys on every console."

"The 20 included games are stored on the device in standard ISO format," yifanlu explained. "There's no additional checks, so you can just replace the files or redirect the mount to somewhere else (like a USB drive)."

This means yifanlu was able to play 1998's Spyro the Dragon on the Classic, which isn't part of the console's out-of-the-box collection. Plans to programme more emulators, in order to relive other fan-favourite games, like Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 2 and Crash Bandicoot, are already in place.

What do you think about this news? Do you have a PlayStation Classic? What game do you wish was on it? Let us know.

Featured Image Credit: Sony

Matthew McGladdery

Matthew McGladdery graduated with a BA in Broadcast Journalism from Salford University, where he worked at Revolution 96.2, Global Radio, and Fleetwood F.C. When he left university, he took on the role of co-editor for the Salfordian and worked as freelancer for the likes of BBC Sport. He continues to work in sport but loves talking all things Xbox, PS4, and PC just as much.

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