Here’s How PlayStation Plus Is Changing

Here’s How PlayStation Plus Is Changing

Now that we’re good and (sort of) settled into the PlayStation 4 generation, Sony is adjusting PlayStation Plus, its premium online gaming service, for all three of its major gaming devices.

Sony marketing VP John Koller spelled out the changes in a post on the PlayStation Blog today. By his description, it sounds like the company is primarily formalising the process of making select games available for PS Plus subscribers, free of charge, for a period of time on the PS4, PS3 and PS Vita consoles.

Under the new system that goes into effect in July, PS Plus subscribers will have access to two free games on each respective console through the existing “Instant Game Collection” network. Koller said that the availability of these games will follow a clearer time window than they did previously, so subscribers will only be able to access them from the first Tuesday of a given month until the first Tuesday of the following month.

Koller’s post made no mention of pricing, so I take it that the the service is going to cost the same amount going forward — $US49.99 for a full year, $US17.99 for three months, and $US9.99 for one month.

The good news for PlayStation owners and PS Plus subscribers is that they’re guaranteed two new titles on each of the consoles rather than one, which is what they had before. The bad news is that the stricter time window will limit access to Sony’s Instant Game Collection in a way that it didn’t before.

“In the coming weeks, you’ll see that several of the titles that have had a nice, long stint in the Instant Game Collection will be phased out,” Koller said in the announcement.

The changes to Sony’s PlayStation Plus service are arriving shortly after Microsoft said that it was adjusting its Xbox Live service in several ways that brought it more in line with Sony’s current offerings.


  • Somehow i feel as PS+ becomes mandatory for ps4 online and the phasing out of ps3/vita that the free games offerings will reduce in quality.

    • This already happened. Especially the US PS+ offerings, they’ve been extremely average compared to EU for the last 4-5 months.

  • The other thing to note is that generally if a game is cross-buy, you get it on all the systems it supports. So for example the US is getting the recent Sly Cooper game for PS3, but apparently because it’s cross-buy it’ll also be on Vita, but not count toward the two Vita games for the month.

    On the other hand, the Vita selection for the US next month is demonstrably worse in that it’s a pair of cheapo old indie games (Terraria and Mutant Mudds) where EU once again gets a proper retail game (Dragon’s Crown). So I guess it balances out.

    • The dive in quality is a bummer for US account holders. Although I cant even remember the last time I played a plus title anyway (oh wait contrast *shudder*). It’s all about the sales for me and US PS+ remains fabulous for that!

  • this is a huge downgrade.
    you only get a month of play.
    can i assume that games previously unlocked on a ps+ account before these changes will stay until expiry of your account. or are they changing this as well?

    • How do you only get a month of play? You still have the games tied to your account as long as you maintain the PS+ subscription.

      • It’s interesting, at first I read it like the poster, that give you a month to play and then it gets taken away from your account, like a rental. It’s not that though is it. It’s just that rather than 4-5 months of being in the Instant Game Collection, they’ll just be there for a month and then the next ones come along to replace them.

        • Correct, they’re not changing how the core of it works, just the availability window to add it to your account. If they were making the games like a one month rental, i’d say the shitstorm created would be legendary.

          • Indeed. It would be a considerable downgrade of the service.

            Sony wants to offer more content for the PS4; most PS4 owners probably have Plus. People have been asking for this, Sony is responding.

    • Yeah I think you’ve misread this – they just mean that stuff like Uncharted 3/Gravity Rush/Resogun won’t be sitting there for 6-12 months anymore. The list will be totally fresh every month – which is a rad (or at best ambivalent) change.

      • Yeah, this. Plus also it used to be that stuff came in and out of the instant game collection on plus unpredictably. Some stuff would enter and remain for months, other stuff was there for a few weeks or a month or something. Now it’ll be completely predictable – new stuff comes in first Wednesday of the month (first Tuesday in the US/UK, timezones make that basically Wednesday for us) and they’re available to add to your account until the first Tues/Wed of the following month when the whole lineup is flushed and replaced with six new games.

  • So my monthly trick of starting the download and then cancelling it to add to my downloads list will still work?
    There is too much on that list that I havent even touched for me to let the subscription lapse

    • You don’t even have to use the console or do a part download. ‘Purchase’ the game in the online web store (it goes through as $0 at the checkout) and then it will go onto your account as a game you’ve bought and always be available for you to download as long as your PS+ subscription is current.

  • Wow a lot of negativity. Love to see an article on PS+ vs xbox live.
    From what I understand, to play online on PS4 you subscribe to PS+, lets say for one year at $69.95. Over the course of that year you get 24 free PS4 games (not to mention 24 PS3 games and 24 PS Vita games). Xbox live will cost me $79.95 and no free games?

      • Yeah since about June last year. Starting June 14 it will be 2 games X360 and 2 games on the XB1. They’ve also made it so that the games starting June 14 are like the PSN games in that they cannot be accessed when your Gold expires where the previous 12 months of 360 games you own indefinitely.

  • Not surprised with Sony upping to a second PS4 game to remain competitive with Xbox’s gold program and also not suprised that they seem to be more strict on PS3/Vita and how long you can download them for. Still atm i prefer the Xbox program – i get the game, i keep it, i can still play it if i let my sub for gold lapse.

    • Only the 360 games- “On Xbox One, active Gold membership required to play free games you’ve downloaded.” Here

      • Yeah i know – i should have put Xbox 360 rather then Xbox so it would include the one. Still, considering most games released on PS4/One are small arcade games that i finish quite quickly they are no big loss compared to my PS3 instant game collection, while i get to keep my 360 one.

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