PlayStation Now has been called the Netflix of Games, offering a way for PS4 and PC gamers to play a collection of PS3 and PS4 games without having to download them first. But while it seems like a good idea on the surface, the rather expensive monthly price-tag has gamers asking one question: is PS Now really worth buying?
Here, we explain what PlayStation Now is, how much it costs compared to the competition and a selection of the best games you’re going to find on PS Now.
What is PS Now?
PS Now is primarily a streaming service, much like Netflix, that allows you play any title of the huge catalogue of games without any need to download or install them on your device. Because the game itself is run on Sony's servers and streamed to you via the internet, you don't need a powerful PS4 or PC to play them – instead, the limiting factor is likely to be the speed and reliability of your internet connection.
Sony recommends minimum internet speeds of 5Mbps and a low ping for the optimal gaming experience, so we’d check your internet speeds before signing up.
If your internet connection isn't fast enough to provide stable game streaming, then we've got good news for you; much like Microsoft's Xbox Game Pass, Sony also provides the ability to download games on the PS Now library for offline use. It's a new feature of the service, allowing Sony to compete more directly with Microsoft's Xbox Game Pass.
The charm of cloud-based gaming is that you have the freedom to pause games at any time and pick them up again on a different device, and PS Now also supports PSN features like online multiplayer, trophies and messages.
You just need a DualShock 4 controller, a broadband connection and a compatible device. While at one time the service was available on PS4, PS3, Vita, PS TV, PC and a range of Sony and Samsung TVs, Sony has since ditched support for all but the PS4 and PC.
How much does PS Now cost?
It sounds like a great deal – right? The ability to browse a library of 500+ games that you can instantly play is impressive, but it’s not quite as cheap as Netflix, which may be a deal-breaker for some. Sony’s PlayStation Now will set UK gamers back £12.99 per month, while those in the US will have to fork out $19.99 for the pleasure.
That is expensive when compared to Netflix, which starts from as little as £5.99 per month, and even when compared to other game streaming services; Microsoft’s Xbox Games Pass costs £7.99/$9.99 per month, and Nvidia GeForce Now will set you back £7.50/$9.99 a month.
What are the best games available on PS Now?
Sony’s PlayStation Now service boasts the largest game library of any game streaming service including Nvidia GeForce Now and Xbox Games Pass, with over 500 PS3 and PS4 games on offer. However, while it’s a large collection, you won’t find the latest PS4 titles on the service like with Microsoft’s Xbox Games Pass, which features Xbox-exclusives like Sea of Thieves on release date.
But despite not having the most up-to-date collection (the latest titles to be added include Knack and F1 2016), it does boast a large collection of PS2 and PS3 games. It’s the only way to play older PlayStation titles on a PS4 so if you’re interested in a retro gaming, this is the only way to do it.
Our personal favourites currently available on PS Now include:
- The Last of Us
- Red Dead Redemption (especially ahead of Red Dead Redemption 2 later this year)
- Fallout: New Vegas
- Shadow of the Colossus
- Heavy Rain