PSN, SOE restoration begins, update 3.61 goes live

Sony are finally starting to make their move on restoring PSN; firmware update 3.61 is now live.

The mandatory update forces users to change their password, hopefully putting a dent in the information of the 77 million accounts that were stolen weeks back. Users can only change the information on their own PS3s; systems that don’t have their accounts already activated won’t work. If a user hasn’t downloaded any content from their account before, a message will be sent to their email address upon trying to sign into PSN. That email will let you change your password via computer.

More exciting however is the company’s plans to bring the both SOE games and other PSN features today. Separate press releases confirm the same thing for their respective companies. SOE will bring back “nearly all” of its games today, complete with enhanced security. PSN’s return it a little more complex; the features detailed to come back in this first wave will be delivered on a country by country basis. The release lists the Americas, Europe, Australia, New Zealand and the Middle East as the first to see restoration.

Just in case you forgot, that means online play, Qriocity, friends lists and video rentals are back. Also returning will be PlayStation Home and third party apps like VidZone.

Let May 15 be known as the day PSN came back, then. When will the Store and other features return?