Good games never die. It just takes some time to truly appreciate some of the more hidden gems. That’s why PS Plus is such a great service. Would it be better if gamers didn’t have to pay $60 a year in order to play games online? Yes, of course, but because Sony has been giving multiple games on multiple PlayStation consoles away every month since 2010, it has been a great value.
Sure, getting AAA games long after the initial launch may not interest a majority of players who want and need to play games at launch, like us in the press, but there is value in getting a game eventually. Not everyone can afford to get the latest right away. Some of these are also a bit more obscure. So with all that said, these are the ten best games we think PS Plus had to offer on a second wind sort of scale.
Broforce is a run-and-gun 2D shooter in the same realm as Contra. The best part about it, besides the over-the-top explosions and kills, is its loving homages to classic Hollywood stars and films of the 80s and 90s. For example, Arnold Schwarzenegger is represented in both his Terminator and Commando roles. There is also Bruce Willis’ Die Hard character, Will Smith from Men in Black, Uma Thurman from Kill Bill, and the list goes on. It is a blast alone, or with friends.
9 Detroit: Become Human
2018 was a pretty great year for PS4 exclusives. First there was God of War in April, which was followed up by Marvel’s Spider-Man in September. In-between that there was Detroit: Become Human, which had the shine of those other two, but didn’t quite get the attention it deserved initially that May. Adventure games aren’t for everyone, but hopefully with the recent PS Plus addition of this, more people will check it out if only to see the Connor segments.
8 Grand Kingdom
Grand Kingdom is a spiritual successor to a game the West never received. Grand Knights History was a PSP game with a similar gameplay system and art style. Players create a guild and then venture forth on missions on a map kind of like a board game. Engaging enemies will transform it into turn-based battles with tactical inspirations, which is to say characters could move around. This addition to PS Plus worked across both the PS4 and PS Vita system. While niche, it remains one of the best RPGs on either system.
Iconoclasts is the result of what blood, sweat, and tears can turn into after years of hard work. Developer Joakim Sandberg started this by himself in 2010! Part Metroidvania, part action platformer, this pixelated beauty is a sight to behold.
Once it launched on PS4, it became free instantly, which is always great for a new release. It might be a smaller indie title, but the story has a lot to say about today’s worldviews. Aside from that it’s just fun to play.
6 Mad Max
There were two big reasons why Mad Max didn’t quite get the attention it deserved when it launched in 2015. First of all it was supposed to launch aside the new movie, Fury Road, that May, but got delayed. If it had people would have probably been more interested after since stellar film. On top of that when it did release, it was on the same day as Metal Gear Solid V. Oops! This open world treat has some rough edges, but is still a great take on the brand.
5 Mercenary Kings
Mercenary Kings is like a 2D version of Borderlands mixed with Monster Hunter. Players go on random missions on the same island, but have different objectives. Grinding through missions on repeat will net players new materials they can then use to forge new gear and crazy amounts of insane guns. Does that blend from the intro make sense now? It can get repetitive alone, but the awesome art and killer soundtrack make for one fantastic ride. It was pretty buggy at launch, but it’s a lot more stable now.
Resogun was free right at the launch of the PS4. It may not have had the allure of Killzone: Shadowfall, or Knack in terms of graphics, but what it lacked in that department it made up for in gameplay. It was a fun arcade experience to test the new system out. Does it belong on a list of the greatest games of all time? No, but it is important for this list for help ushering in the PS4.
3 Rocket League
Rocket League would have probably found an audience if people had to pay for it, but because it launched exclusively first on PS4, and was free at said release, a lot of people were able to jump in from the get-go.
It created a phenomenon, which eventually led to Microsoft seizing that opportunity and buying the studio out. What will Psyonix do next for Xbox One? The future is limitless, but even if it is Rocket League 2, we will be happy.
2 Tearaway Unfolded
Tearaway Unfolded is a re-release of a PS Vita game from the developers of LittleBigPlanet. While it still had some creative interactions, this was more of a straight up platformer. That is not to say it was without the studio’s killer charm and whimsical nature. It never found a huge audience on either platform despite great reviews and even as a free game it didn’t quite hit the peak of a Mario title. However, if just one person found this through PS Plus then we would be happy.
1 Yakuza Kiwami
Yakuza used to be a niche franchise where only the hardcore fans were interested. The big problem was that Sega was never able to publish the Japanese and English versions close together. That is to say sometimes it was years before they even announced if one was coming over. The dark days are over now as Yakuza has finally found a bigger audience in the West. Releasing this game, which is a remake of the first title, was a brilliant idea. Get more people in on the ground level to help create buzz for further sequels.