Get the most out of your PS3 or PS Vita system with our starter guide.
If you've just ripped the packaging off your brand new PlayStation 3 or PlayStation Vita, you may be asking yourself: "What shall I do first after setting it up?"
Well, you've come to the right place. Read on to find out how you can enjoy free online gaming, where to look for the biggest video games, how you can stay in touch with the latest PlayStation news and offers and much more.
1. Get connected
PlayStation Network is where you go to play games online, stay in touch with your PlayStation friends, download games and demos from PlayStation Store and get all your favourite entertainment, whenever you want – and it won't cost you a penny to access.
Sign up to PSN by creating your own Sony Entertainment Network account. Find out how at eu.playstation.com/create-account.
2. Invite your mates to join in
You've seen how easy it is to get going on PSN. It's just as simple to get in touch with your friends, so you can play with or against them online and compare your progress through in the games you're all playing.
Think of PSN as a giant, comfy sofa for you and all of your mates to play your favourite games on. To join in the fun, you just need the Online ID of each friend and then you can follow these quick steps.
3. Line up your next favourite game
Stuck for which game to try next? That's okay – there's an awful lot of choice out there. Use our Games Finder to track down the PS3 or PS Vita game for you. Whether you're after an intergalactic epic or a bite-sized puzzler to play on the bus, you'll find exactly what you're looking for.
Search for PS3 games here, and PS Vita games here.
Once you've narrowed down your selection, head to PlayStation Store from your PS3 or PS Vita to download your game. You can also buy PlayStation Store content on your PC or Mac, ready to download the next time you switch on your PS3 or PS Vita.
For some ideas, why not check out what some of the developers behind the year's biggest games are playing?
4. Join the best members club in gaming
Subscribe to PlayStation Plus and you'll get a stack of top-rated PS3 and PS Vita at no extra cost. Once you've paid a subscription fee you can then build up your Instant Game Collection, use up to 1GB of online storage for game saves from both your PS3 and PS Vita and get access to game trials and exclusive discounts at no extra cost.
Find out how to play more and pay less here.
5. Play PS3 games on your PS Vita, and vice versa
PS3 and PS Vita form the perfect partnership. If you're the proud owner of both, the two systems can interact, connect and share content with each other thanks to unique cross-platform features.
Eager to finish off one more level in Sly Cooper: Thieves in Time on PS3? Grab your PS Vita and pick up exactly where you left off using Cross-Save. Run out of wireless controllers for your MotorStorm RC session? Then Cross-Play lets you join in the fun on your PS Vita. Desperate to save Princess Yorda in ICO & Shadow of the Colossus Classics HD, but need to head out? Play remotely on your PS Vita.
Get the full list of cross-platform games and features here.
6. Stay in touch with the latest PlayStation news
What happens when you finish your first game? Connect with the world of PlayStation, and plan your next steps:
7. Any questions?
Still wondering about something? Head to eu.playstation.com/support to find what you need, whether you want to learn how to recommend PlayStation content to your friends, or discover how to play games in stereoscopic 3D.
You're all set – welcome to PlayStation!
Spelunky, Dust an Elysian Tale and more, available now