When Sony announced its major changes coming to PlayStation Now last month, on top of more games and a much better price tag, one of those features was the ability for subscribers to play online - something previously restricted to PS Plus. Giving PS Now subscribers the ability to play online with an entire library of games at their fingertips starts to make PS Plus feel a little obsolete, however, one thing that’s still exclusive to PS Plus members are the two free monthly games.
The 2019 Holiday season is a little lighter than previous years with no big hit coming in December, excluding the recent Halo Reach release date announcement, as developers and publishers prepare for the next generation of consoles. And because of that, PS Plus games for next month have a good chance to get more exposure than normal with users looking for new games to play over the holiday break. Here’s our wish list of free games for PlayStation Plus in December 2019!
Watch Dogs 2
To the disappointment of many, Ubisoft has delayed Watch Dogs: Legion until the next fiscal year and confirmed that it will be a cross-generational game, which means fans may have to wait until the end of 2020 at the earliest. With so long to wait until the next installment in the series, now could be the perfect time to re-release the severely underrated Watch Dogs 2 on PS Plus.
Back in 2013, pre-release footage of the original Watch Dogs was used to set a benchmark for what players could expect from graphical fidelity and gameplay stability in the next console generation. That didn’t quite pan out the way fans expected and it led to many skipping out on the 2016 sequel - a game praised for its story, characters, and gameplay variety. Releasing Watch Dogs 2 as a PS Plus game in December would be a great distraction from the Watch Dogs: Legion delay.
Watch Dogs 2 is available now on PC, PS4, and Xbox One.
Hellblade: Senua's Sacrifice
Right now, Ninja Theory is hard at work on the Xbox-exclusive Bleeding Edge, due to release in March 2020 following its acquisition by Microsoft in 2018. While Bleeding Edge is a multiplayer-only brawler, Ninja Theory has long been known for its single-player, story-driven games like Heavenly Sword, the 2015 Devil May Cry reboot DmC, and Star Wars centric Disney Infinity 3.0. Perhaps the most highly-regarded title from Ninja Theory is 2017’s Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice, an action-adventure game that was praised for tackling real-world issues such as mental illness.
Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice’s gameplay is nothing to write home about, a fairly straightforward mixture of combat and puzzle-solving. However, the game's narrative is something else entirely, a powerful depiction of psychosis, which makes it difficult for a person to determine the difference between what is real and what is not, and that concept is woven into the story and the gameplay in fascinating and horrific ways that leave a lasting impression and elevate Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice above the rest.
Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice is available now on PC, PS4, Xbox One, and Nintendo Switch.
Back in September 2019, Canadian developer Matt Thorson rebranded the Matt Makes Games studio into Extremely OK Games, keeping the same development team while moving away from the idea of a sole creative force. Under the Matt Makes Games banner, Thorson developed the indie action game Towerfall, as well as the critically-acclaimed 2D platformer, Celeste.
Celeste is easily one of the best 2D platformers ever created. It's challenging, rewarding, aesthetically stunning, has outstanding level design built around perfectly timed execution, and ultimately tells a beautiful story of mental illness. Madeline is a young girl on a mission to climb Celeste mountain, a metaphor for her struggle with depression. Celeste is an incredibly challenging game that demonstrates how Madeline and the player are able to overcome the obstacles in front of them by continuously getting up and trying again, over and over and over.
Celeste is available now on PC, PS4, Xbox One, and Nintendo Switch.
Star Wars: Battlefront 2
The history of EA's rebooted Star Wars: Battlefront series hasn't been very good. The first game was widely considered to be half-baked when it comes to content and Battlefront 2 will forever be shrouded in controversy for its loot-box heavy past. But the truth is that Star Wars: Battlefront 2 has only gotten better since launch, adding new Campaign missions in its first couple of months, ditching the old loot-box system entirely, and consistently being updated with new content with two updates coming next month.
Star Wars: Battlefront 3 won't be happening anytime soon and considering that DICE and EA have continuously supported the game with new and exciting content, there doesn't need to be. Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker is right and the corner with new tie-in content coming to Star Wars: Battlefront 2 next month, meaning that now is a better time than ever for Sony to capitalize on the success of the brand and bring in new players while Star Wars is hot again.
Star Wars: Battlefront 2 is available now on PC, PS4, and Xbox One.
If Sony plans to continue with PlayStation Plus despite the changes made to PS Now, which is almost guaranteed, then it's going to become increasingly more important that the subscription can justify its existence when the PS5 releases worldwide next year. The next-generation of consoles are going to come with a lot of changes to how we play games and cloud-streaming and subscription services like Xbox Game Pass and PS Now are here to stay.
Right now, outside of adding PSVR games to the mix to replace the missing PS3 and Vita games, the only way for PS Plus to justify its existence to consumers is by releasing high-quality games on a consistent basis. The past few months have been nothing less than stellar and Watch Dogs 2, Hellblade: Senua's Sacrifice, Celeste, and Star Wars: Battlefront 2 are all strong contenders.
PlayStation Plus members receive two free games every month with their subscription.