The PS4 does require PlayStation Plus to play online. That being said, it's not the all-encompassing kind of requirement that Xbox Live tends to impose. You'll still be able to get all of your updates and DLC without a Plus membership. Furthermore, you'll be able to use your Netflix, Amazon Video, and your others apps without interruption.
Online multiplayer is something that has seen significant growth in this past generation. With the conquest of games like Call of Duty and Battlefield focusing on intense and frenzied matches with people around the globe, it is no secret that connectivity and multiplayer are important and valued by the industry and the players alike.
Of course, it’s not without flaws. Yes, I’m looking at you, twelve year old kid on Call of Duty when you should be playing something more along the lines of Ratchet and Clank, or Knack.
2017 PlayStation Plus Lineup vs Xbox's Games With Gold
PlayStation Plus and Games with Gold each offer free games every month. The quality, and value of those games does vary, however. Here, we'll take a look as we move into 2017, at both sides and see who is offering the better value.
- Little Big Planet 3 ($19.99) vs Lovers in a Dangerous Spacetime ($14.99)
- Not a Hero ($12.99) vs Monkey Island 2 Special Edition ($9.99)
- Starwhal ($11.99) vs Project Cars Digital Edition ($29.99)
- Anna Extended Edition (PS3)($9.99) vs Star Wars: The Force Unleashed ($19.99)
- Ninja Senki DX ($4.99)
- TorqueL ($9.99)
Okay, so adding it all up, PS4/PS3/PS Vita owners get a combined total of $69.94 in value for their free games in the month of February. Meanwhile, Xbox owners do get slightly more value with $74.96 in total.
That being said, we need to look at the quality of the offerings here. If you own more than one generation of PlayStation console, then you get a lot more value with more games.
Also, I love Monkey Island as much as the next guy, but that game came out in 2010, and Force Unleashed came out in 2008! At least PS4 owners are getting recent or brand new titles. Just saying.
- Day of the Tentacle Remastered ($14.99) vs World of Van Helsing: Deathtrap ($19.99)
- This War of Mine: The Little Ones ($29.99) vs The Cave ($14.99)
- Blazerush ($9.99) vs Killer Instinct Season 2 ($34.99)
- The Swindle ($14.99) vs Rayman Origins ($19.99)
- Azkend 2 ($7.99)
- Titan Souls ($14.99)
That comes out to $92.94 for PlayStation Plus members and $94.96 for Xbox One members. This month was a tight contest as both sides offered older titles. Day of the Tentacle was pretty fresh, but that's because it was remastered. The original is pretty old, but wasn't playable on PS4 until this release.
2016 PlayStation Plus vs Games With Gold: Total Value
Looking back on 2016, if we add up all of the free titles, we get this final score:
PlayStation Plus: $1,283.28 vs Games With Gold: $1,053.55
Boom! PlayStation Plus wins by a long shot. Honestly though, for $60, that's quite the return on your investment.
PlayStation Plus Price Change: September 2016
As part of a post on the PlayStation Blog, Sony has announced that the price of PlayStation Plus will be changing as of September 22nd, 2016. Existing members won't be affected until their membership renews on or after the date above.
Here's what we're looking at:
- 1-year memberships are going from $50 USD to $60 USD
- Three month members are going from $17.99 USD to $24.99 USD
- One month memberships are staying at $10
While not a drastic hike, this is the first time prices for PlayStation Plus have changed since the launch of the service in 2010. The official statement from Sony is as follows:
The new pricing reflects the current market conditions while enabling us to continue providing exceptional value to our members. As a member, you will continue to enjoy the benefits and features that enable shared experiences, such as online multiplayer, free games, and exclusive discounts. You will also continue to get exclusive benefits such as online game save storage and discounts across the PlayStation digital services.
Does this price change affect your opinion of the service? Will you be renewing when your next membership is up? Let us know in the comments below! Continue reading for a deeper look into what that $60 per year is going to get you.
What Do I Need PlayStation Plus For?
Here’s the thing, this generation was led by two types of people. One, is the type of person who used to come into my store when I worked at GameStop, and complained about how PlayStation is free to play online, but you have to pay for Xbox. Then there’s the other type, the one who comes in arguing that Xbox live is better because of the fact that you pay.
Well now both people will have less to complain and argue about because with the PS4, you will be required to have a PlayStation Plus membership to play online. Now don’t freak out on me.
The subject of paying for online multiplayer is a touchy one, but it’s really a fact of life. If you want dedicated servers, or better matchmaking, or even less maintenance down time, then the service needs some kind of cash flow, or it’s not going to beat out the paid competitor.
PlayStation 3’s network was fine, but Xbox 360 had the edge in terms of connectivity and competition. With PlayStation 4, Sony is having you pay so that they can level the playing field and bring you a better online experience. In a recent interview, the President of Worldwide Studios for Sony, Shuhei Yoshida, had this to say on the matter:
"Considering the cost, to try to keep such a service free and consequently lower the quality would be absurd. We decided that if that's the case, then it would be better to receive proper payment and continue to offer a good service."
In the interview, he claimed that, "The main pillar for the PS4 will be online play. We're developing many new ways to play and connect which requires a large investment of resources.” That means that PlayStation Network will be bigger and better than ever. And it’s all because they decided to ask for a little money.
What else does PlayStation Plus do for me?
Great question hypothetical reader! PlayStation plus offers a multitude of benefits right now on the PlayStation 3. And, the best part is that you’re Plus membership will carry over to PlayStation 4, so if you’re not a member, join now and enjoy the perks!
PlayStation plus members enjoy a selection of free game downloads each month, as well as discounts in the store, free full game trials, and early access to betas. It’s like a VIP membership minus the stupid politics and with actual benefits.
Even Xbox Live has tried to copy this formula, with somewhat pathetic results. While PlayStation Plus gives you a multitude of free games for both the PlayStation 3 and the Vita each month, Xbox Live throws you an emaciated bone in the form of two free games a month, and they aren’t even relevant titles! The first set they did was Assassin’s Creed 2 and the Halo 3! Sure, they’re decent games, but come on, they’re over five years old!
PlayStation Plus members also enjoy a feature called Share Play. This allows your friends to play a game with you, even if they don't own it themselves. They can jump in and watch you play or join a multiplayer match and play with you. If you want to let them have control, that's an option too.
You can hand the controls back and forth as needed, especially if you're playing a tough game. You only need to be a member, you're friend doesn't.
Another exciting feature that's been recently implemented is Vote to Play. This allows members to vote on one of the free titles for the coming month. Three choices are given, and the ones that aren't winners still get a discount.
To vote, you simply need to be a PlayStation Plus member and head over to the page on the store. It's another awesome feature that makes members feel like their V.I.Ps.
In total, PlayStation Plus offers these awesome benefits:
- Online multiplayer for PS4
- 24 free PS4 games each year
- Exclusive discounts on the PlayStation Store
- Access to Share Play (the ability to share games with your friends, even if they don't own them
- 10 GB of cloud storage for PS4 game saves
Honestly, it’s worth the price
From one gamer to another, I want you all to trust me when I say that PlayStation plus is worth every penny. It costs fifty dollars for an entire year.
Besides getting amazing online multiplayer on PS4, you’re also getting free games every month. In fact, you’ll even get a few on PS4 when you hook it up at home! This service is the best in the industry, and once you have it, you’ll wonder how you ever lived without it.
Do you have PlayStation Plus? If not, why haven’t you bought it yet? Tell us in the comments!
Article by - Bradley Ramsey
Insert Date: 10/21/2013