PlayStation Plus: it’s fresh, added value stuff for PlayStation fans who want a little bit more from the otherwise free PlayStation Network. But the information around is a little big confusing, and incomplete. Sure, there’s press releases, but these don’t always make it through to the public intact, and whilst over on the EU Blog James Thorpe is answering as many questions as his little fingers can reply to, there’s a lot to get through.
So, in the interests of simplicity, we’ve rounded up most of what’s important about PlayStation Plus so you can get a quick look at everything the brand new subscription service offers.
How much does it cost?
It’s €14.99 / £11.99 for 90 days and €49.99 / £39.99 for a whole year’s subscription.
What are the main features?
Monthly discounts on PS3 and PSP games, 4 free games a month, automatic downloading of patches and updates, and the ability to trial new games. More information here.
Does PlayStation Plus include Cross Game Chat?
No. The official line from Sony is that PlayStation Plus includes “games & special offers, full game trial and automatic downloads,” but we’re told that the service will “evolve over time” and that “anything they add will be a bonus.”
What happens to the content you get once your subscription ends?
Anything you buy with the exclusive discounts including exclusive add-ons, avatars and themes will be yours to keep. If you sign up for a year and download LittleBigPlanet, that’s yours to keep too.
However, the content you get for free (or, at least, included within the price) with the service, such as the minis and so-on will only work as long as you are a member of PlayStation Plus.
Do you get your games back if you re-subscribe at a later date?
Which European territories won’t be able to sign up for PlayStation Plus?
The only territories that have access to the Store but will miss out on PlayStation Plus are Turkey and Russia.
Will there be new features in the future for PlayStation Plus members?
Again, we can only quote the official line: Sony “will always be working on evolving the service.”
What’s the ‘full game trial’?
It’s an hour’s rental, included within the PlayStation Plus price, for new PS3 games. You’ll get to demo the full game for 60 minutes, and if you decide not to buy it after that you still get to keep any Trophies you have earned, although they won’t be unlocked unless you buy the game.
Will it be all games available on the Store for Plus members as they’re released?
No. Sony will “select the best Blu-ray and PSN titles for the trial”, giving 2 different titles each month.
What games do you get included with the fee each month?
There are four games every month: 1 PSN PS3 game, 2 PSP/PS3 minis and a PS-One classic.
What firmware version does PlayStation Plus require?
3.40, which will be released, as far as we know, next week.
Do European gamers get the 3 free months like the US gamers do?
No. The US PlayStation Plus gamers get 15 months for the price of 12, but European gamers get LittleBigPlanet instead.
Can you, for example, sign up in December and get the previous five month’s worth of games for free?
No, you must be signed up for that month to get that month’s games.
Does each PSN account on the PS3 require PlayStation Plus membership to play the included games?
No, as long as it’s the master account, the sub accounts should be able to play the “majority” of the games.
Will my PS3 automatically shut-down after it’s automatically downloaded any patches and updates?
Yes. The PS3 will “automatically wake up, download, then shut down afterwards,” and you can also set the time it wakes up to best suit you.
Which games will it automatically patch and update?
The system looks at the last 10 games you’ve played, and then “the 10 before that”.
Will it update games from any region?
Sony say they “don’t see why it wouldn’t.”
What will the discounts be like for existing games?
Sony say the discounts “largely range between 20 and 50% and they vary by title”.
Can I play the minis and PS-One classics from PlayStation Plus on my PSP?
Yes, although your PSP will need to go online once to confirm you’re a PlayStation Plus member.
All answers are taken from the replies on the EU Blog. TheSixthAxis is not responsible for any errors or omissions.