Sony overhauls PlayStation Plus at E3 with full PlayStation 3 games, PlayStation Vita support, and maybe cloud-based gaming

sony overhauls playstation plus at e3 with full 3 games vita support and maybe cloud based gaming relaunches streaming servic

The signs have been on the wall for quite some time: PlayStation Plus is changing. The premium online service from Sony has, up to now, been in a larval form. Microsoft has over 26 million paying subscribers for Xbox Live Gold, and Sony has wanted a piece of that oh-so -delicious revenue pie, but at the same time it wasn’t willing to quash the PlayStation Network’s primary lure: Free online gaming. How do you get people to pay for a premium service when it isn’t essential?

Amidst many rumors and hints about what PlayStation Plus will turn into comes word that Sony may have found the answer to that question. The company will unveil a wholly revamped version of the service next Tuesday at the E3 conference.

Eurogamer reported on Tuesday that multiple sources have confirmed that Sony will announce its remodeling of the PlayStation Plus during its press conference scheduled at the beginning of E3. While Sony Computer Entertainment Europe declined to comment on the story, PlayStation Plus content manager Ross McGrath stoked the speculation flames with a message on Twitter reading, “By the way, if you don’t have a PS+ subscription, now is the time to get one. For real. Just get 3 months if you aren’t sure. Trust me.”

His words indicate that change is coming but also that there may be a change in pricing for the service. PlayStation Plus currently costs $49.99 per year or $17.99 for three months. A customer survey sent by Sony on May 2 however indicated that PlayStation Plus would likely introduce a variety of different subscriptions with tiered pricing in the near future. That rumor also said that subscribers would get access to full downloadable versions of retail PlayStation 3 releases as well as subscriptions to Call of Duty Elite, Acitvision’s premium service for the Call of Duty games.

This new report reiterates those points, saying that the planned revamp scheduled for E3 will introduce free PlayStation 3 games alongside the free PlayStation One Classics offered through PlayStaion Plus. This update will also finally bring PlayStation Plus to the PlayStation Vita handheld. The service has been sorely missed on the handheld since its release in February and an influx of subscription-based digital services and games will serve it well.

Free games, new services, and new pricing are all expected additions that could help make PlayStation Plus a more profitable business, but not a groundbreaking one. Integration of streaming, cloud-based gaming on the other hand would truly distinguish Sony’s service from its competitors. A rumor emerged on Thursday that Sony would announce a partnership with a major cloud gaming service at E3. With Gaikai and OnLive being the only significant competitors in the field, they seem like possible candidates. Could PlayStaion Plus emerge from its chrysalis as the first console-based streaming gaming service? We’ll know next week.

We’ve reached out to Sony Computer Entertainment America’s PlayStation Network team for comment on this story via email. As of this writing, they have not responded, but we will update this story if and when we hear from them.


Brace yourself. Sony’s PlayStation 5 is going to be expensive

How much will Sony's PlayStation 5 cost? Official pricing will stay under wraps for months, but early details provide enough information to make a guess. Our estimate suggests the price will be higher than fans expect to pay.

Everything we know about the PS5, including its impressive hardware specs

PlayStation 5 rumors have circulated for over a year, but there's still plenty we don't know. Here's everything you need to know about the PS5, including rumors about its release, specs, and games.

Xbox One X vs. PlayStation 4 Pro: Which console is more powerful?

Far from cooling down, the console wars are only getting more intense. We compare Microsoft's Xbox One X to Sony's PlayStation 4 Pro to help you decide which premium console is right for you.

Sony will censor offensive PlayStation Network IDs with temporary usernames

Offensive PlayStation Network IDs will be replaced with temporarily placeholders until the owner chooses a new username. Previously, Sony instantly banned the PSN accounts associated with IDs that violated the terms of service.

Transform into the ultimate leader with our tips and tricks for Civilization 6

Civilization VI offers both series veterans and total newcomers a lot to chew on from the get-go. Here are some essential starting tips to help you master the game's many intricacies.

Here's where Xur is and what he has for wares this week in Destiny 2: Forsaken

The weekly vendor in Destiny 2: Forsaken always brings Exotic weapons and armor, some of the toughest loot to find in the game. Here's everything you need to know to track down Xur: Where he is, when he shows up, and what he's stocking.

Amazon sale knocks 20% off Nintendo Switch, Pro Controller, and games

A new wave of savings on gaming content is crashing down in celebration of Earth Day. Amazon is slashing prices up to 20% off for used Nintendo Switch consoles, games, and accessories like the Switch Pro Controller.

World of Warcraft's allied races will make you want to start a new character

The Horde and Alliance are seeking new allies in their struggle for control of Azeroth. Whether you pledge your allegiance to the Horde or Alliance, we have a guide to help you unlock every allied race in Battle for Azeroth.

Wired headphones are so 2018. Here's how to pair a Bluetooth device to your PS4

One of the best aspects of modern consoles is how easily you can pair them with other devices. Here's our quick primer on how to connect a Bluetooth headset (or really any Bluetooth device) to your PlayStation 4.

Here are the best games to play with your friends on the Nintendo Switch

The Nintendo Switch's hybrid design adds convenience to your gaming time, allowing you to play Switch games both at home and on the go. The design also benefits multiplayer experiences, from co-op to competitive and online to offline.

Get Nindie with it and check out these awesome indie games for the Switch

The Nintendo Switch's portability makes indies feel at home on the platform. Luckily, there are plenty of great titles to choose from. Here are our picks for the best Nintendo Switch indie games.

Epic Games bans more than 1,000 cheaters in 1st week of Fortnite World Cup

Epic Games has already banned more than 1,000 cheaters in the Fortnite World Cup. The developer is taking cheating seriously, especially as players are competing for a $1 million prize pool in every week of the qualifiers.

Mortal Kombat 11 DLC characters reportedly leaked: Who’s next after Shang Tsung?

A datamine on Mortal Kombat 11 reportedly revealed all the DLC characters that will be added to the game's expansive roster. The leak corroborates the hint that the anti-hero Spawn is on his way to joining the fighting game.

You're not a true fan without these Nintendo Switch exclusives

Who doesn't love a good Nintendo game? If you're looking for great first-party titles for your Nintendo Switch, take a look at our list of the very best exclusives available right now.