OK, so, this sounds bad. Of course I did some googling, and it sounds like this is a precursor to YLoD. First thing I did was buy God of war collection, and playing that was just fine. As soon as I got god of war 3 on the external HDD, and I'm pretty sure it has to cache that to the PS3s internal HDD, as I've read. So this happened after about 20 minutes of playing the game. What I'm wondering, is there a diagnostic tool to test the HDD/hardware at all? If it's a failing HDD, that should be pretty easy to replace, right? Could it be my external HDD failing? can't buffer, PS3 panics and shuts down? If it's heat.... what then? Am I SOL? Again, what happened is after 20 minutes, I got 3 short beeps, console turned off, and the red light flashed on and off.