Re-review: Playstation Now – Better Now
Recently, Sony almost cut the price of its Playstation Now service in half. Where you previously paid € 99.99 for a year, you now pay the same as for Playstation Plus, namely € 59.99. This price already makes the service more than worth it for a number of obvious reasons, but we still take a critical look.
Along with the news that the service has become significantly cheaper, a number of strong titles appeared. Grand Theft Auto V, God of War, Uncharted 4 and InFamous Second Son. The fine print reads that these titles will disappear again in January 2020. Why? If there's one reason why the competitor's comparable service is hugely interesting, it's access to the latest first-party games from day one. God of War has been around for over a year and even this one isn't permanently available through Playstation Now.
Nevertheless, the offer is enormously extensive and diverse on Playstation Now. Something for everyone and you can even choose to download the Playstation 4 titles on your Playstation 4. Unfortunately this is not possible on PC, but this would greatly improve the quality and experience. You can only stream at a maximum of 720p. This is not a big deal when you consider that you can play Playstation exclusive games on your PC with only a Dualshock 4 controller. On the other hand, one of my favorite Playstation franchises is Killzone. And when playing a shooter you notice that it is much nicer to actually have a game installed. You do get used to the latency and Killzone already has a nice delay in it, but you notice it.
You notice it especially with shooters. Before the release of The Outer Worlds, I spontaneously felt the urge to play Fallout New Vegas again. It works great. The game runs smoothly, plays nicely, only the gunplay is sometimes a bit uncomfortable due to the small delay in it. Previously, I spent hours amusing myself with the Sly Collection that appeared on the Playstation 3. When playing this title via Playstation Now, on the other hand, you don't notice the delay at all. So it kind of depends on what you plan to play. Are you playing a PS4 title? Then download it if possible so that you don't have any delay at all and can just play the game at maximum resolution.
So it all works fine. Both on a Playstation 4 and on a PC or laptop. Always try to connect the internet via cable if you have the possibility to do so. Via the WiFi, I occasionally suffered from a grainy image for a few seconds via the laptop. However, this only happened via the open hotel WiFi and not my home network, where I have been able to play almost without any problems so far.
This brings me directly to the first lack of service at the moment. It would be really nice to be able to download the titles on PC as well so that you could play without internet access, but just need to go online so that Playstation Now knows you have an active subscription. The same goes for the Playstation 3 titles on Playstation Now. You cannot download this on PC or PS4. As a result, you are obliged to stream them so that you have input lag. In addition, you can play everything at a maximum of 720p with the exception of the Playstation 4 titles that you download on the console.
I think the biggest problem here lies in the fact that the PS4 is not backwards compatible. How would this work on the PS5? Can we download all generation titles on this in the future?
Undoubtedly, things look better now than ever for Playstation Now. We have looked at Playstation Now before, namely 2.5 years ago when there were no Playstation 4 titles available. At that time, we already praised the library with over 400 games. At the time of writing, there are already more than 700 games on the service, including Playstation 4 games. We therefore thought it was a good time to take a closer look at the service and to look at the difference in 2.5 years. Let's see what 2.5 years has brought us:
- Price dropped from €99.99 to €59.99;
- Playstation 4 titles;
- Over 300 titles. So about 100 new titles a year.
It just seems to be moving forward. but there are still some things we miss. For example, 2.5 years ago we already pointed out that offline play is a real loss for travelers. Not every hotel has WiFi that is strong enough to stream PS4 or PS3 games to your laptop without any problems. But what if we no longer need a laptop at all? Remote-Play has recently been updated for smartphones. So what if Playstation Now also comes to smartphones and tablets?
Another lack is the range of Playstation VR titles. It would not be possible to play these titles on a PC, but on PS4! There are a number of VR titles that we really enjoyed. Yet many VR titles are still very compact and therefore the price tags for the short VR experiences are still quite high. Including these titles in the Now catalog would be a perfect approach to this problem and might lower the threshold a lot more than it currently is. Check out some of our favorite Playstation VR titles here that we also love to see on Playstation Now!
On a row
Playstation Now has a very large and still growing catalog of games. The addition of some major Playstation 4 titles is phenomenal, but even without that addition the offer is already very strong. Sly Cooper, Ratched and Clank, The Last of Us, Uncharted, InFamous and so on. Almost all blockbuster PS3 games are included and then we have not yet discussed the Playstation 4 offer in detail. There are, however, a number of flaws that we hope we will get an answer to in the near future.
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