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PSP's adhoc Party comes to PAL regions

Europe and beyond to get free-to-use online game service

Sony has announced that game service adhoc Party is to launch in Europe, South Africa, Australia and New Zealand, allowing some PSP titles with Ad Hoc multiplayer modes to be played online.

A beta version of the service was launched in Japan last November and uses the PlayStation 3's wi-fi adapter to essentially turn the home console into a server for the PSP. Although the PSP must remain within range of the PS3's wi-fi connection, compatible games can be used to play online opponents worldwide.

Since the software will be free to download from the PlayStation Store the only requirements for use is a wired broadband connection. Once online the software allows access to "houses" where users can chat via voice and text before playing a game. The service is divided into 10 "worlds" made up of 64 lobbies, in which up to 32 user avatars can chat and play.

The service's launch in PAL regions will enable the use of the service with games including Gran Turismo, Monster Hunter Freedom Unite, Dissidia: Final Fantasy and Resistance: Retribution.

A post on the official PlayStation Blog indicates that more titles will be announced nearer to release, although this is specified only as "soon".

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