With Sony confirming that a digital-only PS5 will be available by the end of the year, the march towards digitalisation in the medium continues. Of course, when it comes to convenience, digital is king, with players having a whole library of titles to choose from without ever having to leave their living room. However, it's important to remember that the decline of physical software does come at a price for the future of video games.
While still not without its own issues, physically playing games on their original hardware has remained a viable method for ensuring that classic gaming experiences can be relieved for decades to come.
Emulation has long been considered the last bastion of video game preservation in lieu of second-hand hardware but even that isn't necessarily safe as a gaming archive. This has been demonstrated on several occasions by companies like Nintendo declaring war on ROM sites and actively cracking down on archivists attempting to preserve the art form's history by slapping them with multi-million dollar lawsuits in order to 'protect' their intellectual property.
Some games have already experienced this sorry fate, and are now all but resigned to the memories of those who enjoyed them contemporaneously.