PS Now Explained: What You Need To Know About Sony’s Cloud Gaming Service
Cloud-based games have continued to grow over the past few years, and while the focus is on services like Xbox Cloud Gaming and Google Stadia, Sony has entered the scene ahead of any of them with Playstation now. The cloud service lets you play some of Sony’s greatest PlayStation games without needing to download them, including the ability to play some games on PC, and it’s a great choice if you don’t want to wait until the end. pesky downloads.
It’s understandable that PS Now has eluded you. The service was in a rather primitive form in its early days, with a fairly limited library and less than ideal stream quality. However, Sony has made progress since launching PS Now in 2014 by improving functionality and expanding access, even allowing you to directly download PS4 titles as you can with Xbox games through Game Pass. If this is news to you, or if you just want to learn more about PS Now, let us walk you through everything you need to know about Sony’s subscription service.
PS Now Quick History
PS Now was in beta in 2014 for Sony’s family of gaming platforms (PS4, PS3, PS Vita, and PS TV), including Sony Bravia TVs, and then launched in 2015 in North America, in Europe and Japan throughout the year. At the time, it only had a handful of PS3 games in its library available for streaming, but has since moved on.
While Sony dropped support for PS Now for PS3 and PS Vita / TV in 2017, it beefed up the service by expanding the library with PS4 and PS2 games in 2018, including the ability to download them directly to your device. PS4. And in 2019, PS Now game streaming was offered to PC users through a dedicated app, and it’s now supported on PS5 as well. Today, PS Now offers more than 800 games that cover versions of different gaming platforms from Sony.
How PS Now Works
PS Now is a subscription service that gives you access to an extensive library of games. One of the most significant developments recently has been that Sony has cut the monthly price in half, from $ 20 to $ 10, to get closer to its competition. There are currently three subscription models; monthly, in three-month increments or on an annual basis:
- $ 9.99 per month
- $ 24.99 for three months ($ 8.33 / month on average)
- $ 59.99 per year (average $ 4.99 / month)
Playing games via cloud streaming on PS Now does not tax your local hardware in the same way as digital or physical copies of games. Indeed, the processing tasks are performed by remote servers which send a video stream to your screen: you access the cloud to play these games. There are some inherent advantages, like not stressing your actual hardware and not having to wait for the download to finish before playing. While the possibility of noticeable input lag or compressed picture quality due to streaming remains, your mileage will vary depending on your connection.
At the moment, PS Now looks a bit like the Xbox Game Pass approach, but for PlayStation games, as you are also allowed to download PS4 and PS2 games directly to your PS4 as part of your membership. Approximately 300 games are available for download on console.
The games you can play
PS Now has some big hits, like the latest God of War and Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End, two high-profile PS4 exclusives. However, some games can and will be repeated. Much like with Xbox Game Pass, third-party games typically don’t stay on the service all the time, so be sure to check for any expiration dates before starting a new game.
Subscribers get access to a variety of great games like Bloodborne, Rocket League, and Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain. PS Now also casts a fairly wide net; Sony is showing its confidence in the service’s ability as you will see fighting games, competitive shooters, and fast-paced action games on the list, which generally demand a low lag gaming environment. You’ll probably find something that you like, but here are a few PS4 titles we recommend right off the bat:
- Transmitted by blood
- Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End
- God of the war
- Rocket league
- Grand Theft Auto V
- Mortal Kombat 11
- Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain
- Tekken 7
- Chronicles of Valkyria remastered
- Wolfenstein: The New Order
- XCOM 2
- gravity rush 2
- Fallout 4
- Battlefield 4
However, it’s not just about the latest PS4 games. You can also find a number of PS3 and PS2 available on PS Now, and here are a few that we can recommend:
- Ape Escape 2 (PS2)
- The asylum, the city and the origins of Batman Arkham (PS3)
- Bioshock 1, 2 and Infinite (PS3)
- Braid (PS3)
- Catherine (PS3)
- Eternal Sonata (PS3)
- Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots (PS3)
- Metal Gear Solid HD Collection (PS3)
Over 800 games make up the service, and you can check out the full list of games available through PS Now.
While a PS Now subscription doesn’t give you access to PS Plus benefits, you do at least have access to the multiplayer capabilities for games on the service. That’s a nice perk that doesn’t require you to commit to both subscription services to get the most out of PS Now.
PlayStation games on PC? Certainly not!
You can now play PlayStation games on PC through PS Now through the app. Of course, it’s not the same as having a good PC port, but it’s pretty crazy to at least have access to some of the successes of PlayStation on a computer. Since you meet technical internet speed requirements, all you really need for PS Now on PC is the right controller. A DualShock 3 or DualShock 4 controller will work, as well as any gamepad recognized through XInput on Windows (including Xbox 360 and Xbox One controllers).
Your PC must be running Windows 10 or later (currently there is no Mac support), so even that junky old laptop can play God of War or Uncharted 4 as long as it’s running the PS Now application and has a stable internet connection. You only need 300MB of space and 2GB of RAM.