In the PS3 Saved Data Utility, some data is marked as "Copying Prohibited". This data comes with the following restrictions:

  • Can only be copied via PlayStation Plus Online Storage or the PS3 Backup Utility.
  • Cannot be copied to USB, outside of a full system backup.
  • If copied via full system backup, can only be restored to the same system.
  • If copied to PlayStation Plus Online Storage, cannot be downloaded to another system within 24 hours of the most recent upload.

I understand that some companies are really asinine about piracy issues and such, but the protection of saved game data (e.g.: player profiles, game status/progress, etc) seems just a little ridiculous on its face. Beyond that, certain things that are copy protected strike me as odd in reflection of some other things that aren't.

Of the nearly 20 folders of data that I have, only 4 have any copy-protected data:

  • Mass Effect
  • Mass Effect 2
  • Sonic The Hedgehog 4
  • YouTube

The confusing bit centers around the Mass Effect titles. All data in Mass Effect is copy protected, but in Mass Effect 2 only the Profile data is secured. The saved games can be copied freely.

So, I'm curious to know what reasons (if any) are given for copy protecting some data but not others? Based on my data, it seems relatively few games are using this and some that do are making odd choices as to what should be protected. Is there an official answer for this?

closed as not constructive by kotekzot, ChrisF, KatieK, Frank, SIMEL Jan 4 '13 at 20:21

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  • Sorry, @Iszi. I'm voting to close this because it's on a per-game basis, making this a "Why did the devs design it that way?" question. – Frank Jan 4 '13 at 17:01

It is not disclosed by Sony or game devs, but many people says it is made so it is harder for people to transfer savegames around to get trophies.

However, the most satisfactory explanation I've heard (from my POV, I'm a Computer Scientist with a background related to game development), is that it is to protect the game, specially the multiplayer. An unprotected game save can be transfered to a PC where people can hack it to create cheats or just give yourself ingame perks and powers. If I'm not wrong people alters COD4 savegames to change colors, have unlimited ammo or reduce reload times.

Note that PS3 savegames can still be copied around even if they are protected, but it's just hard enough that people doesn't bother -and it's easier (cheaper) to ban people from the multiplayer-.

  • Sony won't even let you copy console updates to other consoles... you have to download them again on the other machine. It's just pointless. – GnomeSlice Jan 4 '13 at 16:51

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