Sony’s recently announced changes to their Playstation Plus platform was met with mixed reaction by industry analysts and gamers. The service will be available in three tiers: Essential, Extra, and Premium.
Luckily for those of us unenthused by these announced tiers, the rumor mill is abuzz with likely extra tiers Sony will be making public some time this week. It is unclear if these additional tiers were always in the cards or quickly developed to save face after a mediocre showing last week.
Rumors for additional tiers are flying quick and loose but we stake our reputation as a news outlet that at least all of the following tiers of PlayStation Plus will, in fact, be rolled out this year.
PlayStation Plus PM – This tier replaces the Essential tier’s two monthly games with a single, rotating free title from storied developer Polygon Magic. Word is the service would start with a bang by offering Incredible Crisis in its first month. After that, the sky’s the limit; anything from Slap Happy Rhythm Busters to Galerians could be available to lucky subscribers. It’s unclear if Polygon Magic’s PS2 oveur will also be made available, but as an enormous Street Golfer fan, I will cross my fingers.
PlayStation Plus PS2000 – The turn of the century saw a bevy of heavy hitters on the PlayStation 2. This tier immediately unlocks all of them including Eternal Ring, Donald Duck: Goin’ Quakers, The Bouncer, Real Pool, Orphen, and Kessen. This is the stellar lineup that put the Dreamcast in the ground and simply cannot be missed by anyone who likes games.
PlayStation Plus In Memoriam – This tier celebrates the over two decades of development by the recently defunct Japan Studio. These guys had a hand in many classics either as developer or production assistance so this will likely be one of the pricier service tiers. Each month, the rumor goes, subscribers will receive access to one game they assisted in and one of their originals. For example, we could see Jumping Flash! and Ape Escape one month, and Extermination and Fantavision the next. Unfortunately, word is Camelot Software planning is unwilling to play ball so classics like Beyond the Beyond will remain trapped on the PS1.
PlayStation Plus Knack Pack – Finally, something for the Knackheads out there. In anticipation of the heavily rumored Knack 3, we have heard Sony will offer a PlayStation Plus tier that will give subscribers access not only to Knack and Knack 2, but a cornucopia of Mark Cerny games. This was no easy licensing feat, as the legendary Cerny’s games span consoles, computers, and decades. Month one will thrill trackball enthusiasts with Marble Madness (a hint at a trackball based PS6?), but it’s impossible to predict the wild heights that await. Will subscribers’ hacky their sacks in California games, or search for level warps in Kid Chameleon? Will they run towards the camera in Crash Bandicoot, or compete for gems, crystals, trophies, and relics in Crash Bash? Time will tell, but this is certainly one of the most exciting rumored tiers.
PlayStation Plus Ubiquitous Indies – The cornerstone of this tier is the German adventure game series Deponia. Every month subscribers will receive one of the 27 Deponia titles, guaranteeing the tier’s viability for over two years. Additionally, one to two more indie titles you already have elsewhere will be offered. So in a given month you may get Gesundheit Deponia and two free downloads of Cave Story. Other rumored offerings include Abzu, Torchlight 2, and Beneath a Steel Sky. Sony is aware that these games may seem to offer subscribers limited value, but are confident that when you see how quickly these games you already own load on the PS5’s SSD, all concerns of cost will disappear, much like Deponia in the 14th entry of the series, Auf Wiedersehen Deponia.
PlayStation Plus Extremium – The final rumored tier ties the three announced and 5 additional tiers outlined above into one supreme package for the truly hardcore. How much would you pay for access to The Ooze, Crime Crackers 2, Summoner, and Lord of Fist? We haven’t heard specifics on pricing for any of the other proposed tiers, but scuttlebutt says this primo package will cost $30 a month or $500 annually, but pricing rumors are always the least reliable.
Some slow-witted analysts privy to these rumors have commented off the record that 9 tiers may border on excess, while other, more credible ones such as Michael Pachter have publicly questioned if a new service with fewer than 11 tiers is leaving money on the table. Doubt remains if Sony will take bullish analyst guidance and offer more than the meager quantity of rumored tiers listed here. We can only hope.