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PlayStation Network down for 16 hours, back Friday 8am

The PlayStation Network will be down and out overnight for scheduled maintenance, from 4pm until 8am on Friday.

The PlayStation Network will be down and out overnight. The online network for the Sony PS3 is undergoing scheduled maintenance -- read on to see how you'll be affected.

The PSN will be offline from 4pm today until 8am on Friday. During that time, you won't be able to access the Playstation Store for PS3, PSP or PS Vita, or account management. You also won't be able to register a new account.

You will still be able to play online games and access online video streaming apps. If you choose to use the time racking up the points with a spot of single-player or story mode, your achievements will be recorded and added to your account once the PSN is restored.

"Regular maintenance," Sony says, "is a necessary part of operating a service such as PSN... as part of our efforts to continue to deliver you a world-class online entertainment experience." Regular is the word: there have been several temporary outages recently, with PSN being taken offline overnight in February and again in mid-April.

Thankfully, these little outages only see the service down for a quick tune-up, rather than a catastrophic blackout like the one that occurred last year, which saw the details of 70 million PSN customers half-inched by hackers.

What will you do with the PSN downtime? Catch up on single-player? Buy an Xbox? Go outside? Check out our top tips for what to do when the PlayStation Network is down, and transmit your thoughts in the comments or on our Facebook page.

For more information and to see when things are back up and running, keep an eye on the offcial PlayStation Twitter. For more gaming goodness, check out our button-bashing buddies at GameSpot.