After a months-long series of delays, PlayStation Plus members will receive a free, specially tailored version of Evolution Studios’ sim-styled racer Driveclub this week, SCE Worldwide Studios President Shuhei Yoshida announced.
Announced as far back as E3 2013, Driveclub PlayStation Plus Edition was due to hit the PlayStation Store alongside the full retail launch of Driveclub. Driveclub premiered in North America on October 7 2014, but the promised free edition failed to materialize.
Driveclub was plagued with online server connectivity issues upon its debut last year – an unfortunate development, given that Sony heavily promoted the game’s multiplayer aspects before launch. These issues drove Sony’s decision to delay Driveclub PlayStation Plus Edition as Evolution Studios attempted to smooth out a rough retail launch. The PlayStation Plus version was later postponed indefinitely and a final release date was never announced.
Driveclub PlayStation Plus Edition includes a selection of cars and tracks featured in the full version of Driveclub. Its list of features, including trophy support, put it roughly on par with the retail release. Items exclusive to the full version of Driveclub are locked in the PlayStation Plus Edition, and players can pay to upgrade and unlock all features at any time.
Sony’s Yoshida notes that all PlayStation Plus members will be able to download Driveclub PlayStation Plus Edition and play its offline modes starting June 25. Online functionality will then roll out to select players in the days following the release.
“Starting Thursday, we will be rolling out online access to the Driveclub PS Plus Edition and will steadily bring more and more players online while continuously ensuring that all game systems are running smoothly,” Yoshida explained. “We have to take this precaution because Driveclub connectivity is demanding for a multiplayer game, with countless ever-growing social connections across clubs, challenges, multiplayer, and hundreds of thousands of dynamic leaderboards and activity feeds.”
Driveclub PlayStation Plus Edition hits the PlayStation Store, June 25. The full version is currently available at a discounted rate of $25 for Plus subscribers.