New PlayStation Plus: Third-Party Day One games
Ubisoft gets the ball rolling, and many others chip in, but it seems it’s early days yet for the service
Sony has already made its plans known regarding the list of games it will be bringing to its revamped PlayStation Plus service in June but, truth be told, it’s everyone else’s contributions to its library that most gamers are curious to know about. Sony’s games and franchises are well-known and established by now — and it is its own service we are talking about here, after all — so it was more or less a given that the Japanese would bring out the big guns. And they did. What about the biggest publishers, though? Or indie developers? Well… things aren’t entirely clear yet, but Ubisoft got the ball rolling.
The French company officially announced that a number of its most popular titles will be collectively called Ubisoft Plus Classics and that they will be included in the PlayStation Plus Extra or Premium subscription come June. These titles include Assassin’s Creed Valhalla, For Honor, The Crew 2, Child of Light, Eagle Flight, Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon, Far Cry 3 Remaster, Far Cry 4, Legendary Fishing, Risk: Urban Assault, South Park: The Fractured but Whole, South Park: The Stick of Truth, Space Junkies, Star Trek: Bridge Crew, Starlink: Battle for Atlas, Steep, The Crew, The Division, Trackmania Turbo, Transference, Trials Fusion, Trials of the Blood Dragon Game, Trials Rising, Valiant Hearts: The Great War, Watch Dogs, Werewolves Within and Zombi.
These are 27 games in all that Ubisoft Plus Classics will be starting with. The company promises to grow that list to 50 by year’s end, which would be a noteworthy contribution by any standards. Not all games in that initial list are of top quality and many are rather old, but the inclusion of Assassin’s Creed Valhalla alone (a game offering more than a hundred hours of gameplay all by itself) is rather important. Unlike Sony, Ubisoft does not seem to plan “rotating” its titles in and out of PlayStation Plus, at least initially, so 50 of its games included in the new service in 2022 is an interesting prospect indeed.
Sony also confirmed a number of games other publishers — such as Square/Enix, Rockstar, 2K Games, Capcom, Bandai/Namco, 505 Games, WB Games and Annapurna Interactive — are bringing to PlayStation Plus in June. These are Ashen (PS4), Batman: Arkham Knight (PS4), Celeste (PS4), Cities: Skylines (PS4), Control: Ultimate Edition (PS4/PS5), Dead Cells (PS4), Final Fantasy XV Royal Edition (PS4), Hollow Knight (PS4), Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy (PS4/PS5), Mortal Kombat 11 (PS4/PS5), Narutoshippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 4 (PS4), NBA 2K22 (PS4/PS5), Outer Wilds (PS4), Red Dead Redemption 2 (PS4), Resident Evil (PS4), Soul Calibur VI (PS4) and The Artful Escape (PS4/PS5).
Third-party publishers will be contributing to the other types of games offered to PS Plus Premium/Deluxe subscribers too, Sony noted. The Classic Games Catalog of PSone and PSP games, as well as PS2 remasters, will also include Mr. Driller, Tekken 2, Worms World Party, Worms Armageddon, Bioshock Remastered, Borderlands: The Handsome Collection, Bulletstorm: Full Clip Edition, Kingdoms of Amalur: Re-Reckoning and the LEGO Harry Potter Collection. PS Plus Premium subscribers will also be able to play a number of PS3 titles via game streaming, including Asura’s Wrath, Castlevania: Lords of Shadow 2, Devil May Cry HD Collection, Enslaved: Odyssey to the West, F.E.A.R., Lost Planet 2, Ninja Gaiden Sigma 2 and Red Dead Redemption: Undead Nightmare.
This is most probably not the final list of games that PlayStation Plus Extra, Premium or Deluxe subscribers can look forward to in June, but it’s already apparent that third-party support for the new service is offered rather cautiously. It’s great that PS Plus subscribers will have access to such high-quality megahits as Assassin’s Creed Valhalla or Red Dead Redemption 2 — as well as such indie darlings as Celeste and Hollow Knight — but it feels as if most publishers decided to play it safe with Sony’s service, at least in the beginning. The absence of Electronic Arts is greatly felt, as is Activision/Blizzard’s (which won’t be contributing to PS Plus after its takeover by Microsoft). Chances are we’ll be getting one more update on that final list until Sony’s revamped service launches. Whether there’s room for drastic changes in the meantime remains to be seen.