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Image: Damien McFerran / Push Square

The list of All PS Plus Games – which currently spans over 800 games if you pay up for PS Plus Premium – is quite startling. Sony had promised around 700 games prior to its revamped subscription’s release, so we already had an idea of what to expect, but seeing it all laid out on the PS Store is eye-opening. For an annual fee of £99.99/$119.99 – roughly double the price of the borderline mandatory PS Plus Essential – you get a lot of bang of for your buck here. Is it the best deal in gaming? Well, let’s not go down that path.

Indeed, it’d be easy to draw comparisons to the Team in Green’s overbearing subscription strategy, and we’ve no doubt the comments will take a turn in that direction regardless of what we write here. But it’s important to remember that Sony has a different approach to its subscriptions: PS Plus is essential to the organisation’s business, but it’s not the only focus – it’s moving in a different direction to its competitors. For that reason, we’d rather look at the new tiers for what they are rather than what they’re not – ultimately, consumers will determine the success of PlayStation’s path.

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PS Plus Extra Proves the Importance of Catalogues

And there’s no doubt that PS Plus Extra specifically is great value for money – especially if you’re a new PS5 or PS4 owner. While its game catalogue of roughly 414 games shares a lot of similarities with the now-defunct PS Now, the library has been revamped in the right way. Sony’s not included brand-new games like Horizon Forbidden West and Gran Turismo 7, but it has added best-sellers like Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales and Ghost of Tsushima: Director’s Cut – popular first-party releases that still do well at retail.

It’s this inclusion of major names that elevates the service above PS Now, and makes it more attractive overall. The likes of Returnal and Demon’s Souls, two PS5 exclusives that attracted furrowed brows at $69.99/£69.99, will find new fans as part of PS Plus Extra – and you’re paying just £33/$40 on top of your traditional PS Plus Essential subscription to gain access to them both (and hundreds more) for an entire year. Obviously in this age of soaring gas prices, that’s still a considerable sum of money, but we do think Sony’s got the pricing right here – it’s a somewhat straightforward upsell.

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Image: Damien McFerran / Push Square

To be fair, if you’re the kind of enthusiast that frequents a site like Push Square, you may find the library less compelling as a consequence of buying many of the major titles day one at full-price. And that’s an area where the new PS Plus tiers fall short, because Sony’s already said that major exclusives like God of War Ragnarok will not launch into the service. But it’s absolutely imperative to remember that not all gamers invest this heavily into their consoles; the majority of players only purchase a handful of new releases every year.

And this is where the importance of catalogues come into the equation. There’s an undeniable appeal to day one releases, but there’s also inherent value in a compelling library of games that you can enjoy on-demand – and Sony has delivered on that. Whether it’s Death Stranding, Red Dead Redemption 2, or God of War, there are dozens and dozens of major titles available to play in the new PS Plus Extra tier – with the promise of more to be added every month. Factor in old staples like the PS Plus Essential monthly games and PS Plus Collection, and it’s difficult to complain.

PS Plus Premium Will Need Strengthening

Where things get less compelling is in PS Plus Premium, which is messily assembled. There are a number of additional perks here, ranging from cloud streaming to classic games, but it lacks the cohesiveness of the PS Plus Extra tier. For example, Sony has decided to include remasters here, like The Last of Us Remastered, which makes it a little confusing overall. The promise of PS1 and PSP emulation is certainly appealing, but the results are mixed and the selection minuscule right now – it all feels a little directionless.

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Image: Damien McFerran / Push Square

Sony is, of course, also still paying for mistakes it made over 15 years ago with the cumbersome architecture of the PS3; while armchair analysts argue it’s possible to emulate the last-last-gen console on the PS5, the reality is that it hasn’t achieved it yet, and so cloud streaming is required to play titles like Tokyo Jungle and Ratchet & Clank: A Crack in Time. Despite being one of the first-movers in the cloud-streaming space – it had a huge headstart on the likes of Google Stadia – it’s been largely left behind by the tech giants now. Nevertheless, the quality of the cloud streaming has improved of late, and is quietly robust these days – although your mileage may vary.

Perhaps the key detail here is that PS Plus Premium is just £16/$20 more than PS Plus Extra, and it adds another 388 games to play, which is ultimately impressive value. It’s another example of Sony getting the pricing right; the upsell is fairly straightforward, and while we don’t fully recommend the top tier until the classics catalogue expands, it’s not going to break the bank if you’re already paid up for PS Plus Extra to move to the top tier. Ultimately, we think Sony’s going to have a lot of success converting engaged PS Plus Essential members to the higher tiers, because the value is hard to argue with.

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PS Plus' Revamp Is Just Getting Started

Of course, it’s important to remember that what’s here today, as we write this article, is just the beginning. It’s clearly taken a monumental effort from Sony to unify its subscriptions and transition members accordingly, but the real work starts now. The library, as it stands, is strong – but there needs to be a clear roadmap and cadence. We’d like to see PS Plus Premium, and specifically its classics catalogue, find more of an identity – there needs to be a consistent stream of additions across all older PlayStation consoles (including the PS2) to make this tier more attractive overall.

And while we appreciate that the Japanese giant is adopting a different strategy to its rivals, there needs to be value in PS Plus Extra beyond older games you may have already played. Confirmation that anticipated indie Stray will be added at launch is a strong start, and we’d like to see more of that from the firm in this first year; adding anticipated, exciting indies and smaller releases day one would enhance the value of the overall catalogue, which is already sizeable and bursting with quality content.

This new dawn for PS Plus feels welcome, though. Sony’s subscriptions, while always representing value for money, had started to stagnate – especially in the face of intense competition. A refocused approach was overdue, and now it’s finally arrived we’re excited to see how it matures. It’s clear that, for many PlayStation fans, PS Plus is one of the most important products that the manufacturer offers. With this revamp, we’re hopeful it’ll bring renewed focus and investment into the service and its various tiers, which can only spell good news for members – both new and old.

If you’re not sure what to play, you can find a list of Best PS Plus Games through the link. We also have a full guide to all PS Plus Memberships: All Three Tiers Explained. And, of course, we want to hear your feedback in the comments section below. Are you satisfied with this restart, or struggling to see the value? Cough up in the comments section below.