Yesterday, Sony’s free game lineup for PlayStation Plus went live for PlayStation 4, PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Vita, which includes free downloads of The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth, Steamworld Dig: A Fistful of Dirt, Frozen Synapse Prime, Luftrausers, The Hungry Horde, and Escape Plan for subscribers of Sony’s premium PlayStation Plus membership.
Now, in a surprising twist, Sony has allowed us a peek at the games that are set to be free downloads for members over the next two months in December 2014 and January 2015!… At least, for PlayStation 4. The PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Vita rewards remain a mystery, but we suppose that it’s good to still have some element of surprise as we anticipate freebies to come.
This early peek appears to be a way to entice more PlayStation gamers that own a PlayStation 4, who previously weren’t PlayStation Plus members, to subscribe to PlayStation Plus. PlayStation Plus is now required to play most games online on PlayStation 4 (with the exception of free-to-play games and MMORPG’s), including one of the PlayStation 4’s most high-profile games this year, Destiny, which can only be played online. PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Vita however still allow players to play online free of charge, without any kind of subscription in place.
For December 2014, PlayStation 4 owners with PlayStation Plus subscriptions will be able to download Injustice: Gods Among Us – Ultimate Edition and all-new indie release, Secret Ponchos for free. In January 2015, PlayStation 4 owners with PlayStation Plus can then download Infamous: First Light and The Swapper for free.
Injustice: Gods Among Us – Ultimate Edition was a PlayStation 4 launch title, an enhanced, visually upgraded re-release of Injustice: Gods Among Us, one that also packs in all of the DLC made available for the original release for free. The DC Comics-themed fighter was one of the more critically and commercially successful games of last year, and allows you to fight with various hero and villain personalities of the DC Universe, set against the backdrop of a parallel universe where Superman has enslaved humanity alongside several heroes, and driven others, including Batman, into becoming fugitives. The original Injustice: Gods Among Us build launched for Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and Wii U. Injustice: Gods Among Us – Ultimate Edition also released for Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 (but not Wii U), as well as PC and PlayStation Vita, beyond its PlayStation 4 build.
Secret Ponchos is releasing on December 2nd for the first time on PlayStation 4, and is also set to come to PC. An innovative combination of online shooter and fighter, done in a top-down, twin-stick style, the game is a multiplayer-focused offering that has players dueling in the Old West. Players who perform well will receive bounties that make them targeted more aggressively by other players.
Infamous: First Light is a PlayStation 4-exclusive standalone expansion for this year’s PlayStation 4 hit, Infamous: Second Son, detailing a prequel story where players control fan-favourite supporting character, Fetch Walker. Fetch has the ability to absorb and generate neon energy, which players can wield in both the open-world setting of Seattle, as well as against waves of enemies in the Curdun Cay Battle Arenas. A copy of Infamous: Second Son is not required to play Infamous: First Light, but those who do have a save file for Infamous: Second Son on their PlayStation 4 hard drive will gain the exclusive ability to play as Infamous: Second Son’s lead character, Delsin Rowe in the Curdun Cay Battle Arena sections.
Lastly, The Swapper is an atmospheric puzzle game where players take control of a nameless survivor of some mysterious space station disaster. Using the titular tool, players create clones to freely swap their consciousness between, which allows them to solve puzzles to find the necessary means to open paths ahead, and discover what exactly has gone wrong at the station. The Swapper originally released for PC last year, before migrating to Mac and Linux, and then being spotlighted as the second offering for Sony’s PLAY 2014 selection of hot Summer PlayStation Store games, marking the point when it released simultaneously for PlayStation 4, PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Vita. The game is also imminently set to launch for Wii U.
Be advised as well that The Swapper is cross-buy on PlayStation, so if you redeem it for PlayStation 4, you’ll also score the PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Vita versions for free!
With the exception of the not-yet-available Secret Ponchos, we’ve reviewed all of these games in some shape or form. We delivered not one, but two reviews for the original launch build of Injustice: Gods Among Us, with both reviews praising the game as a fun and accessible fighter that is especially rewarding to play with friends. This year, we also reviewed both Infamous: First Light and The Swapper’s belated PlayStation ports. We considered Infamous: First Light to ultimately be inferior to Infamous: Second Son due to its disappointing brevity and more shallow gameplay, but nonetheless praised its smart inclusion of the Curdun Cay Battle Arenas, which added much-needed replay value. The Swapper on the other hand was immensely praised by us overall, and stands as our top-scoring game of 2014, due to its potent atmosphere, clever puzzles and effectively ambiguous storyline, with its brevity being the only knock against its excellent PlayStation editions.
Disappointingly, DriveClub: PlayStation Plus Edition is still nowhere to be found in these selections. Sony’s last update on the promised free variation of their recently-released social racer is that they are still sorting out the main game’s pressing server issues, and are still in the process of preparing its free PlayStation Plus build for a proper release.
What do you think of these free offerings for the next two months of PlayStation Plus rewards? Have any of them persuaded you to get a PlayStation Plus membership, if you don’t already have one? As usual, your comments are welcome below.
Eggplante will continue to deliver all news and updates on PlayStation Plus, and other PlayStation-related incentives.