PlayStation Plus dropping PS3 and Vita games in 2019 (update)

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Time is running out for PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Vita owners when it comes to the monthly PlayStation Plus slate — Sony will no longer include PS3 or Vita games in the lineup starting in March 2019, the company announced today.

February 2019 will be the final month to follow the six-game format that has been in place since the PlayStation 4 launched in November 2013: two games on each of the three platforms. Starting with the March list, which will go live March 8, 2019, Sony will only include PS4 games.

Sony said that the monthly lineup “will focus on PS4 titles and no longer include PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Vita titles.” Asked for clarification on the numbers, a PlayStation representative told Polygon that Sony will continue to offer two PS4 games per month — and no other free titles. That means subscribers will be losing two-thirds of the current monthly total.

Nothing else about PlayStation Plus is changing, according to Sony. The terms of the arrangement — that customers must have an active PlayStation Plus membership to play the “free” games — will remain the same, as will other benefits of the subscription, such as cloud-based storage for save files. And subscribers won’t lose access to PlayStation Plus titles that they’ve already added to their library.

“Many of our fans are playing on the PS4 platform, with the increasingly vast number of PS4s in homes around the world,” said Sony, as a way of explaining its decision. The company had sold more than 73.6 million PS4 consoles worldwide by the end of 2017. Sony launched the PS3 in November 2006, and the Vita in February 2012 in North America. And it’s nice to see the company providing a year’s notice on the platforms’ retirement from PlayStation Plus.

“We’ll continue to prioritize the benefits you receive through your PS Plus membership, such as online multiplayer, online game save storage, PS4 monthly games, and exclusive PS Store discounts across content and network services,” Sony added.

Sony is cushioning the blow a bit by offering a stellar lineup of free PlayStation Plus games for March 2018.

Update: A representative for Sony told Polygon that after February 2019, the monthly PlayStation Plus lineups will consist only of two free PS4 games. We’ve edited the article to reflect this.

Comments

Good. While a nice inclusion, it’s been a dead weight for a good long while, now. I love the Vita, but the well has run pretty dry.

I still need to hear more to want to renew my subscription. Haven’t missed it since September.

Yea, if you don’t game online then I can see why Plus isn’t worth it. You can always get it a random month when you want to play online and not need it year round. I hope that when they stop with PS3/Vita they accelerate the rate of PSVR drops. By next year we expect to have about 280 PSVR games and VR games will likely be coming out more frequently than they are now (which is already much more frequent than at launch) so it would be reasonable for Sony to use that PS3/Vita money to tempt more people to buy PSVR.

Still if there was ever a month to get Plus, this might be it depending on the games you already own. Bloodborne, Ratchet and Clank and Mighty No9 are all really good. Mighty No9 is smaller but it’s as Mega Man as it gets. Ratchet and Clank is great too and if Insomniac can make that game so much fun I can’t wait to play Spiderman. I actually thought Ratchet and Clank would be a dumb kid’s game until my buddy convinced me to try it. Bloodborne needs no introduction.

I’ve got all three : ) Boxed, which for me is a better value. I like them. I’ve also got Claire, which is good. Been the trend for at least a year: I own basically everything interesting (to me) that is put on there.

Good point about the online aspect, which I definitely don’t use. And about the VR! (for those who’ve got it) It’s a selling point.

LOL "Good." Yeah, it was really a burden on everyone to get six free games instead of two. Good thing they are stopping that. Our long nightmare is over.

I swear, some of you guys could convince yourselves it was "good" if Sony doubled the price on PSN membership and only gave you a limited number of hours a month.

Read my other replies! (and my comment regarding the update below, which came later) It’s good if they can replace it with something that makes it worthwhile for everyone. It might not be worth it for them right now.

Eh, quality over quantity, it’s a thing

No complaints here. They haven’t really offered much of note for the ps3 in a while anyway, and there’s still a whole year left. Maybe they’ll finally offer Last of Us or one of the God of Wars before the curtain closes.

Really though, by 2019, the ps3 will have been out for 13 years. It’s time to move on, and I give Sony credit for giving a full year of notice. Yet I’m sure the cries of many will still whine about only getting 2 free games a month instead of 6.

Not to mention that March is a great month for the service, with Bloodborne and R&C. Add in Deus Ex, Knack (yes!), and Rime, and it’s already been a great year for the service.

Yet I’m sure the cries of many will still whine about only getting 2 free games a month instead of 6.

There is a real point there though – even as a PS4-only gamer, the number of crossplay games quite often meant that I’ve got more than two games (indeed, as with next month where there are five).

If that’s only ever going to be two now, that’s a genuine reduction.

This isn’t just about dropping the old consoles, it’s reducing the service for the current one too.

I bet PSVR games become regular additions to replace PS3/Vita.

According to the article Sony confirmed the service will only give out two games going forward after march 2019. so unless they change plans during the next year it looks like a reduction.

Definitely. Getting 4 PS4 games a month through the multiplatform "loophole" is a good value! I wonder if most users even realize that they can use these "Vita" games.

Since we aren’t getting any additional games as a replacement, Is the price of PS+ going to drop?

They will probably just add PSVR games consistently to replace PS3/Vita.

Why would it drop? You’re paying to play games online. The free monthly games is just a perk.

"You’re paying to play games online. The free monthly games is just a perk"
No.
When the service began it wasn’t required for playing online (PS3 days) and for those of us who don’t actually play online – the free games, discounts, online save files, etc are the product. For me the online play is just a perk I never bother with.
As someone who owns all 3 systems, this is a reduction in value and yet no price drop. That’s dumb. They should have announced the addition of PSVR or dropped the price.

Well then no longer buy the product – speak with your wallet.

Honestly, these people who expect loads upon loads of free games every month I find ridiculous. The service costs the same as Xbox Live (and if you’re savvy, it’s easy to get a year for 39.99 since it goes on sale every year – I’ve never paid more than 40). And while Xbox Live used to be leaps and bounds above PSN back when PSN was free, PSN has made great strides to close the gap. Expecting this to still be a free service is delusional.

I might play a night of Rocket League once every month or two as the extent of my online gaming, so the discounts and free games are still a huge part of the product for me as well. And for me, it’s still worth the 40 bucks I pay a year. And it will be without ps3 games as well, which they’ve basically completely ignored recently anyway.

I’ve been wondering about that. Is there a pretty consistent period in which it tends to be discounted? Cause I’d be getting that.

Generally around the holidays/sometime in the fall season, retailers have it for 40. Just stop in to cheapassgamer once every few days or every week and check out the deals board headlines, that’s what I do.

Ah yeah, check retailers and not directly through PSN! Thanks.

We all know the answer to that is a resounding "no". In this case, I don’t think it’s a big deal, though. I’m sure the numbers of people actually downloading and playing these PS Vita and PS3 games is very low and probably not worth the bother on Sony’s end on setting up the deals to provide these games through PS Plus. I’m (probably naively) hopeful that they will use this as an opportunity to provide more PSVR games through the service though.

Will the price drop? Absolutely not.

And the "free" games aren’t free. You are paying a subscription fee that originally covered the games only, and later included online play.

Deals occur between Sony and the publishers to decide what titles are "given away" each month. In some cases it’s older franchise games to build hype for an upcoming new entry, other times it’s games that have stagnated but have a lot of extra DLC, other times it’s small titles that likely wouldn’t sell that well in general release (similar to some titles being sold to Netflix rather than cinema release). There is always a deal happening behind the scenes to select the games. No publisher is going to offer a game where they expect to make more money in raw sales.

How Sony rejigs PS+ remains to be seen. They won’t offer more PS4 games as they’re a more expensive item to produce. The core justification they’ll make is that PS+ is now 50/50 instant games collection and online play, and they’ll be looking at the volume of players of Destiny, COD, Battlefield, Battlefront etc etc as a protection of revenue, because you can’t play them without PS+. Gut feel is the majority of subscribers do so because they have to in order to play online, not so much because of the "free" games.

For those of us who rarely venture online, the best you can hope for is better quality PS4 titles, which effectively gives you a new game to play every two weeks which seems reasonable if the quality is there.

There is still one year to go. I’d bet the farm that come 2019, PS3 and Vita titles won’t be in high demand, and you’ll also see a scale down of both in retail stores and (sadly) a potential phaseout of the PS3 itself.

I wonder if/when Microsoft will follow suit. Given that 360 games are backwards compatible, there is still an added value for XBox One users to see 360 games part of Games with Gold.

I just read this week that 840 million hours of backwards compatible games have been played. Over a 30 million user base (assuming those are active users and have all tried backwards compatibility), that’s 28 hours per user! This means on average every user has played a medium sized game with the service. I wonder how much money Microsoft makes with those titles.

Preferrably not for a long time, since Xbox 360 games on GWG are all backwards compatible so it would be a substantive loss. I assume Microsoft will go until they run out of decent games willing to participate.

I honestly don’t know why I keep renewing my PS Plus. The only good games I’ve gotten out of the service in YEARS are Rocket League on PS4 and Darkstalkers Resurrection on PS3 (though I already own that on 360 and it’s free on FightCade). Plus I have a Vita, so I download ~6 games a month. Every other offering outside those two has been garbage. Looking like this year will be it for my subscription.

If you honestly think every other ps plus offering has been garbage, then there’s no helping you. Good riddance.

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