Sony announces PlayStation Now, a 3-Tier Subscription Service

On March 29, 2022, Sony announced that it has planned to unite PlayStation Now and PlayStation Plus to create a three-tier cloud gaming subscription service for its users. The new, merged service will sit under the PS Plus brand and include a number of new features for customers across the three membership tiers. The three tiers of the united PS Plus and PS Now are PlayStation Plus Essentials, PlayStation Plus Extra, and PlayStation Plus Premium. It’s worth knowing that PS Now subscribers will be migrated to the new PS Plus membership plan, where they can access the PS Now benefits as well as a host of additional features. It means PS Now will no longer be available as a standalone service. The overhauled PlayStation Plus service will go live in June 2022. The initial launch will target several markets in Asia, North America, Europe, and the rest of the world where PlayStation Plus is available. In addition, Sony has plans to expand its cloud streaming benefits to additional markets soon.

Let’s get to know what are the new features and subscription plans for the new PlayStation Plus service.

Subscription Plans for PlayStation Plus

1. PlayStation Plus Essentials 

The PlayStation Plus Essentials members will get to enjoy the same features and benefits as the current PS Plus members are getting. This includes two monthly downloadable games, online multiplayer access, cloud storage for saved games, and exclusive discounts. Also, the service is priced the same at $9.99 per month, $24.99 for three months, or $59.99 per year.

2. PlayStation Plus Extra 

The PlayStation Plus Extra members will enjoy all the benefits from the Essential tier, along with the catalogue of up to 400 PS4 and PS5 games that can be downloaded. The collection includes blockbuster hits & iconic stories from the PlayStation Studio catalogue and third-party developers. Therefore, the PlayStation Plus Extra members will have access to some of the most loved titles like Spider-Man, God of War, Returnal, Death Stranding, and more. The PlayStation Plus Extra plan will cost $14.99 per month, $39.99 for three months, or $99.99 per year. 

3. PlayStation Plus Premium

The top-tier, PlayStation Plus Premium plan will include all the benefits from the Essential and Extra tiers. Impressively, the users will have their hands on 340 additional games, including a catalogue of classic games from PS1, PS2, and PSP generations. Furthermore, the premium tier includes PS3 games for cloud streaming and offers limited time trials, where a user can try & select the game before buying. That’s not all. The PlayStation Plus Premium members will have the ability to stream games using PS5, PS4, and PC. This service will cost $17.99 per month, $49.99 for three months, or $119.99 per year. 

It’s worth knowing that for countries without cloud streaming (like Singapore, South Korea, etc), Sony will offer a PlayStation Plus Deluxe plan which is priced lower than the Premium tier. The Delux plan will include everything that the Premium plan has, except for the game streaming elements. 

Now that we know what features and subscription plan Sony will offer under its revamped PlayStation Plus subscription service. Now, let’s get to know what is not included in these plans. These subscription services will not offer first-party games at the launch. It means Sony’s PlayStation Plus service won’t match its competitor, Microsoft’s Xbox Game Pass which offers downloadable access to every first-party Microsoft Studios game on the same day as it’s released. PlayStation’s CEO Jim Rayan says that bundling those first-party games with subscription plans could result in less investment in its Studios and might have an adverse impact on the quality of the games. 

PS Plus and PS Now have a combined base of over 50 million customers. Sony is expecting more of its PS Plus audience into higher tiers, and it has lowered the price for users who’ve currently subscribed to both services and offers retro games. 

What do you think of PlayStation Plus subscription tiers? Which plan are you planning to go for? Share your thoughts in the comments section below. 

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