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Batman: Arkham City and Mercenary Kings Lead the Charge for PlayStation Plus in April

Posted by Robert Ramsey

Europe scores Pro Evolution Soccer 2014

As predicted, crazy blast-'em-up Mercenary Kings will be blitzing its way onto the PlayStation 4 courtesy of April's PlayStation Plus update.

Along with the bullet bonanza, you lucky North Americans can expect to be swooping around Gotham as the caped crusader in Batman: Arkham City on PS3, along with copies of Stealth Inc: A Clone in the Dark, and Castle of Illusion Starring Mickey Mouse thrown in for good measure. As if that wasn't enough, PS Vitas in the land of the free will be nabbing Velocity Ultra and Pixeljunk Monsters Ultimate HD.

Across the pond meanwhile, Europe's offering perhaps isn't quite as robust. Replacing Batman's action-packed romp is Pro Evolution Soccer 2014, but the inclusion of the cross-buy capable Sly Cooper: Thieves in Time seems like a steal. European users will also be getting bloody with Hotline Miami, which will arrive alongside MotoGP 13 on Vita. It certainly looks like that rumoured line up was right after all.

Which titles are you most looking forward to next month? Which region do you think has the better selection? Declare your undying loyalty to Plus in the comments section below.

[via blog.us.playstation.com, blog.eu.playstation.com]

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User Comments (44)

Gemuarto

#2

Gemuarto said:

Sad that I bought Velocity Ultra. Pretty disappointing game. I new that it will be in PS+ someday, though....

Gemuarto

#4

Gemuarto said:

Looking forward for MC Kings, though. Looks like Metal Slug. And I like Metal Slug =)

Reverandjames

#5

Reverandjames said:

I got excited when I saw Arkham City, then realised it wasn't EU and we get shafted with PES.

Dodoo

#6

Dodoo said:

"Replacing Batman's action-packed romp is Pro Evolution Soccer 2014"

Nooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo!

That sucks big balls...

rjejr

#8

rjejr said:

I honestly think I'ld rather have Sly Cooper: TiT (which seems a better comparison than a soccer game to me) rather than B:AC b/c my kids really are being left out of PS+ w/ all the M games we keep getting - BI, TR, DmC, DD:DA, Metro, Borderlands 2 - but I am looking forward to playing AC. I never played the first as the demo seemed kind of claustrophobic but AC always looked interesting to me. for free I'll play the 2nd w/o having played the 1st. Well if I ever find the time.

FuturLab_Dave

#9

FuturLab_Dave said:

@Gemuarto Sorry to hear you didn't like Velocity Ultra. Can you tell us why it disappointed you? Hopefully we can avoid the same thing in Velocity 2X!

ohhaime

#10

ohhaime said:

They really knocked it out of the park this month. I think this is the first time I want every game in the line up. It so good in fact that I already have half the games :-/ .
But even with owning Batman and the original versions of Velocity and Monsters it's still a great month to me.

Owning a copy of Mercenary Kings is enough to convince me to buy a PS4 instead of replacing my old laptop.

@Jaz007 The developers have already said that the PS4 version will not be cross-buy because it comes with the DLC built in.

rastamadeus

#12

rastamadeus said:

@Reverandjames and @Doodo Europe had Arkham City in the December 2012 PS+ collection. Personally it'll just be PES for me this month - and it's nice to see something that isn't an FPS/adventure included - as I've already double Platted Sly Cooper (a decent game, much better than the two PS2 sequels), completed Hotline Miami about fifteen times (fabulous game) and the other two don't interest me in the slightest.

thedevilsjester

#13

thedevilsjester said:

@ohhaime I have enough indie games on my PS4, I bought quite a few of them, so I have no real desire for mercenary kings. I already have stealth inc, and the batman games are unplayable IMO because of the lopsided character placement. So even owning all three Sony systems, this next month is going to be very meh for me on PS+.

rastamadeus

#18

rastamadeus said:

@Reverandjames When it's purely platforming the game is brilliant. Sadly there's just too many mini-games, unnecessary distractions and annoying characters (everyone bar Sly) for my liking - although I know I'm in the minority there, particularly with the characters.

AG_Awesome

#19

AG_Awesome said:

Im so excited to play Velocity. I've been looking forward to that one since I missed the last sale.

SilentJ

#22

SilentJ said:

I hate it when PSN games go on sale only to be free the very next month. I had a feeling Stealth Inc and Velocity Ultra would be free eventually just not so soon.

Munkyknuts

#23

Munkyknuts said:

I already have Arkham City and I hate Football so either sucks for me. However I used to play the Sly games back in the day so TiT interests me as does Mercenary Kings....it's not the strongest European release we've had but it's ok with me...I've got too big a back log of games to play as it is.

Gemuarto

#25

Gemuarto said:

@FuturLab_Dave WOW, this is so nice of you to ask =). Actually, VU is pretty good from some point of view, but teleport and bombs mechanics are way too complicated and frustrating in terms of controls, when you try to beat 100% trophies out of the game =). I know that it's my fault, that I can't deal with that, but I am really sensetive person in terms of good controls =). I don't remember exactly, but it can be nice to add something to trigger constant boost, maybe in options, or some button to activate it, you know, for levels with constant boost. Because it's really frustrating, when you need to push boost button, throw bombs and teleport at the same time. You can tell that it's tiny thing, but for me, I think that controls are somewhat broken. And, you know, in terms of reality, on ship like that, I think it is good idea to make button for constant boost. So pilot can concentrate on more important things and have more fun.

Also, I think that it's good idea to make possible to trigger switches by automatic fire or something like that, like in twin stick shooters, for example. Because with current bomb controls, it feels more like luck than skill when you can complete boost level with 100% completition. I tried to fire bombs very fast, but there are always some bomb, that flies in another direction. And it looks very strange, when you can fire bombs in any direction and can't do the same with machineguns. And because of that, controls feels pretty frustrating.

Don't remember about teleport mechanics, but it's not as bad as bombs and boost... =). Maybe you need to create some mechanism, that will push ship in open space, when it is on the edge of the wall.

You can tell that all this will make game less hard. But when controls are tight, you just can make more challenging levels. and players will feel themselfs better, because they could beat hard levels thanks to their skill and not luck. And, yeah, I know that luck is part of the skill.

I know it's hard to make perfect controls, but maybe you need to think how this will look and feel in real life. And think how player will feel when he can't do something he wants 100% of the time. By something, I mean basic actions in the game, which should work 100% of the times, in my opinion.

I don't remmeber controls for sure. But if you don't want to make machinegun like in twin stick shooters, maybe you must let people to throw bombs pushing circle, square, triangle and X =), instead of directional buttons. So bombs will fly in direction player wants 100% of the times. =). That can partly solve the problem.

I beat about 30 to 40 levels of VU with 100% completition, but then I realised, that I don't have fun and feel myself frustrated because of controls. And I don't have fun just completing levels, also. Only 100% =))). Anyway, your game have really great potential, guys =). If you'll make controls more fluid, tight and comfortable =).

Oh, maybe your game is just too hardcore for me, don't know. But, you asked, I answered. Will be glad if this helps, even a little bit =). Also, I have my doubts about Velocity 2X, but at the same time I understand, that VU was build upon mini game for PSP and most flaws came form there... At least, I though so, when I deleted VU from MC forever =).

Also, ship movement in VU is really cool and fun =).

And, yeah, you need to make shooting more meaty =(. I mean, when I shoot alien ships in VU, I don't feel like I shoot them at all. yeah, I remember that impression. You hear some sound, but visually....

But my biggest problem with the game - CONTROLS =). They are just uncomfortable for me... =(

Eh, sorry for so many words and mistakes. English is not my native language =(.

FuturLab_Dave

#26

FuturLab_Dave said:

@Gemuarto Thanks for the reply! I love the constant boost idea for speed levels, I'll definitely see what the rest of the team think. You're right when you say Velocity Ultra suffered a bit from being built on top of the Mini's version of Velocity. V2X has been created with a totally new engine so hopefully this will alleviate a lot of the problems.

We thought our controls were tight, but there is always room for improvement :) We're working hard to ensure the V2X controls feel responsive and accurate (in fact there's 3 people gathered around one of our programmers desk right now making the telepod-throw feel better).

Thanks again for your feedback, I'll pass it on to the team and hopefully Velocity 2X will be a better game because of it :)

EDIT:
Did you try flinging the bombs using the right stick in Velocity Ultra? And how did you find touch-to-teleport?

divinelite

#28

divinelite said:

I kinda hope not mercenary king because I no like its visual. Strike suit zero would be nice lol.

Well if it has discount for plus I think I ll get it. If not ill wait till get discount later

divinelite

#29

divinelite said:

@FuturLab_Dave wow velocity ultra is so great, I bought it on vita before after captivated with demo

The only why I havent finished it is becsuse I am quite perfectionist but with no great skill lol

Squiggle55

#30

Squiggle55 said:

This months lineup is fantastic. The only game I already own is Pixeljunk Monsters, which is just such a perfect tower defense game.

Epic

#32

Epic said:

Can we change trade Castle of Ilusion and Clone in The Dark for EU's Sly Cooper Thieves in time?
Have been wanting to get the game since ever but never got enouh money to import a copy xD

ToOGoodOfAPlaya

#33

ToOGoodOfAPlaya said:

I was seriously hoping not Mercenary Kings but it is what it is.
I have been disappointed with all bar one title, Don't Starve, and even then it's not great.
I'm not fussed if it's AAA or not, just something that looks like it was made for the new console, that I can replay and maybe has a decent story/adventure.
I remember playing Uplink when it was first released on the PC, that was literally made in someones house, then burned onto a CD from their own PC, it rivalled high production valued games and was one of the best experiences I have had in gaming, so that level can be achieved but I'm yet to see it personally.

get2sammybAdmin

#34

get2sammyb said:

Really happy with this month's lineup. Haven't played PES for a while, so eager to give it a go.

Chris1975

#35

Chris1975 said:

@FuturLab_Dave

Would just like to say that as usual this is why Push Square is the best place to come for news and reviews as developers (outside of the big gaming houses of course) actually take an interest in what is being said on the page and actively look for feedback through them, Kudos to both you and Push Square for making a gaming site that is both current and useful.

Gemuarto

#37

Gemuarto said:

@FuturLab_Dave Eh, I don't want to tell something that will affect game in some undesireble way =)). Indies are great because nobody can tell developers what to do =))). And I really have no idea how hard it is to make a game. I mean, even if I told that VU was dissapointing, I really respect you guys, and wish you best =).

But if you ask, yeah, I used right stick for bombs. And tried touch screen for teleport. Bombs with right stick are good, but still sometimes they fly not in the direction you want. Maybe you need to make dead zone bigger or something >__>. Or maybe, with constant boost, the problem will dissapear by itself =). You know, because it is not very convinient to hold R button and fire bombs with right stick at the same time. Or, maybe it's beeter to make bombs fire after you realese right stick. And to make some laser pointer to appear, when you push it =). So you push right stick, see where bomb will fly and then realese it =).

Teleport is actually pretty solid the way it is(touchscreen is unconvinient). But I think that it can be better if you make teleport more like high speed movement through walls. So when you push teleport button, ship starts to move to destination player choose. But I am not sure how that will affect game mechanics, don't remember exactly, maybe this is important for your game to leave teleport the way it is for better rhythm. Just make it more responsive. Because I remember that sometimes, when you realese teleport button, ship didin't jump.

Sorry that I can't give you better feedback. Need to play again to do that =). Some things are already blured in my memory. But I can do that, if you send me code to download V2X for free =). LOL... On Vita or PS4 =). If you seriously want to know my serious thoughts about serious game improvement =).

Ugh =). Really glad that you answered, Dave =). It's nice that praised developer like yourself, found some time to listen to common folks like myself =). LOL.

Also, sorry for late answer, but it was already after midnight here =(.

FuturLab_Dave

#38

FuturLab_Dave said:

@Chris1975 Always happy to discuss the experience people have had with our games, it's the best way for us to improve :)

@AG_Awesome The game is intended to be tough but fair (except maybe the minesweeper mini-game.. there's a bit of luck involved there haha).

FuturLab_Dave

#39

FuturLab_Dave said:

@Gemuarto We've made teleport in V2X start at 64 pixels in the direction you're pressing, and the cursor moves faster over terrain than it does over space. This makes quick hops much easier and you're less likely to make mistakes (at least that's the plan!).

I discussed the constant boost with some of the team, and unfortunately there are few reasons it wouldn't work (one example is Kai can't shoot her 360 degree palm shot if she is boosting in platform sections).

At some point around the release of Velocity 2X we'll run some competitions and code giveaways on Twitter (I'm @futurlabquality, James is @futurlab), and I'm sure there'll be plenty of websites doing small giveaways too - keep an eye out if you want to grab a free copy of the game!

We don't have a release date yet, but we're hoping for the middle of 2014. I'm sure PushSquare will let you know the release date at some point in the Futur ;)

Gemuarto

#40

Gemuarto said:

@FuturLab_Dave I'm just curious how things will turn out in VX2. But not so curious to participate in competitions or something. Maybe I'll support your team with my money, though =). But I still have some doubts, because of VU. But with new engine and things more polished, VX2 can turn out in really great game. Eh.... Can't decide... though. From some point of view, I think that creating VU was bad idea. And I am really curious why you decided to make VU instead of totally new game. Also, playing VU, I thought, that I want some less complicated more classic sidescroller from yout team. Eh, somehow it feels sad that indie developers trying to be original, instead of making something more classic. I think Resogun has really good balance of classic and originality.

And thanks for the update about realese time =).Sorry if I was too bold. Wish you best luck =).

KillTheG1mp

#41

KillTheG1mp said:

Really looking forward to trying out Mercenary Kings on my PS4 and Velocity Ultra on my Vita. I've been eyeing the game on PSN for a while but never got myself to actually purchase it as I have a gazillion games to play and actually finish (ughhh time!) so I'm glad with the PS+ freebies this month.

You guys that haven't had the chance to play Sly Cooper: Thieves in Time are in for a treat! I bought the game around Xmas when it was 13$ and I just started playing it. It's awesome! :)

FuturLab_Dave

#42

FuturLab_Dave said:

@Gemuarto We made Ultra because the audience for the original Velocity was very small and the game deserved more (VU is out on Vita, PS3 and PC and has been well received).

We also learnt a lot about Vita development - it was tough going from Minis to Vita, there was a lot to learn! If we we tried to do that AND develop a new IP it would have been a monumental task.

blindndeaf

#43

blindndeaf said:

it would be nice for somthing to come out on the four that only the four can do fed up with game revamps from thr three

xMEADx

#44

xMEADx said:

PES is a great freebie I already have FIFA so can't wait to try out pro evo :-) no complaints from me to his month.

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