Sony has amped PlayStation Plus' value to better compete in the billion-dollar subscription service wars.
Services are the future of gaming. Live service games make platform-holders like Sony, Microsoft, and Nintendo billions of dollars every year. One of the most powerful offshoots of live gaming are value-oriented subscription services, which offer on-demand access to games for a monthly fee. Xbox successfully adapted the all-you-can-play Netflix content buffet model, and now Sony has done the same.
The key to having a successful content buffet is the quality and quantity of the content. Subscriptions have to provide value, and Sony is ramping up its efforts with a ton of new games in the PS Plus Essential, Extra, and Premium tiers.
Today Sony announced what could be the best PS Plus month in recent memory. August 2022's PS Plus freebies include the Tony Hawk 1+2 remaster collection, Yakuza Like a Dragon, and Little Nightmares.
What's more is that eight Yakuza games are also coming to PS Plus Extra and Premium throughout the remainder of 2022.
Sony is also securing day one releases of popular and anticipated new games. Stray, the latest indie hit from Annapurna Interactive, released on PS Plus Extra and Premium on day one.
Most of PlayStation's players do not subscribe to its premium PS Plus offering, but this may change as Sony adds more value to the service.
This is just a portion of Sony's efforts to bolster PlayStation Plus. There's also the PS Plus Collection for PS5 owners, which offers access to a smattering of must-play PS4 games, and it doesn't require an upgrade to the more expensive Extra or Premium tiers.
The way forward for PS Plus' three-tier model is added value through content and other incentives. Freebies are a great way to pull people over to the service, especially before the critical Q3 holiday period (October - December), and additional games will help retain subscribers over time.
That being said there's still lots of holes with PlayStation Plus. Sony originally promised that PS Plus Premium would offer 700+ games, but the service is missing hundreds of titles, namely on its PS classic selection that remains pretty sparse.
Sony has a ways to go before PS Plus can offer the value proposition of something like Game Pass, but they're definitely in the right direction and have made tremendous progress.