What Is PlayStation Plus and What Are the Benefits of Subscribing?

If you own a PS4 or PS5 and you haven’t at least tried PlayStation Plus, you’re missing out. PlayStation Plus is a subscription service for Sony’s consoles that grants you all sorts of benefits, like the ability to play online multiplayer and claim free games every month.

If you’re wondering what exactly is included with PlayStation Plus, how much it costs, and whether you can get a free trial, then you’ve come to the right place. We’re going to cover all of this and more.

What Is PlayStation Plus?

PlayStation Plus (PS Plus) is Sony’s subscription service that began in 2010, offering free games, exclusive discounts, game trials, and automatic software updates. The benefits have changed over the years—such as when online play was locked behind the subscription for the PS4—though the core of the service remains the same.

In 2022, PS Plus underwent its biggest transformation to date, separating the service into three tiers: Essential, Extra, and Premium.

If you used PS Plus before this point, everything you knew about the service is included in the Essential membership plan. If you want additional features, those are in the Extra and Premium plans.

What Are the Benefits of PlayStation Plus?

We’ve summarized what’s included in each PS Plus plan in the table below.

Essential Extra Premium
Monthly games
Online multiplayer
Exclusive discounts
Exclusive content
Cloud storage
Share Play
PlayStation Plus Collection (PS5 only)
Game Help (PS5 only)
Game Catalog
Ubisoft+ Classics
Classics Catalog
Game trials
Cloud streaming

For many, the big pull for PS Plus is online multiplayer. If you want to play your PlayStation games online with others, you can’t do that without PS Plus. The only exception to this is free-to-play games like Fortnite. The second headline feature is the included games, which varies per tier and which we’ll cover in more detail below.

Across all tiers, PS Plus members also get extra savings in the PS Store, even on top of an already-discounted price during sales. Other perks include exclusive game content (like skins and weapons), 100GB cloud storage (to save your games in the cloud), and Share Play (which lets you play PlayStation games with your friends, even if they don’t own them.)

An exclusive PS5 perk is Game Help, available across all tiers. In some games, you can press the PlayStation button to bring up tailored hints about the game you’re playing. Think tactics, secret routes, and so on.

If you subscribe to the Premium plan, you can try a selection of games before you buy them—handily, your progress and trophies carry over if you decide to purchase. You can also play games on your PC thanks to the cloud streaming feature.

For a full breakdown of each tier, see our comparison of the PS Plus membership plans.

What Games Come With PlayStation Plus?

The games you get with PS Plus depends on your membership tier and when you sign up.

PS Plus gives away different games every month, available across all tiers. In total, the service has provided over 700 games, including top hits like Shadow of the Tomb Raider, Hitman 2, Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End, DiRT Rally 2.0, The Last of Us Remastered, and Mortal Kombat X.

When the current month’s games are available, you just need to claim them—though you don’t necessarily have to install them. This will tie them to your account. You’ll lose access if you let your PS Plus membership expire, but they’ll return if you renew at a later date. You can’t retroactively claim any games; you can only get the games from the month you sign up and beyond, as long as you remain subscribed.

Starting with the Extra tier, you can play over 400 PS4 and PS5 games (including some iconic Ubisoft franchises) from a separate, evolving catalog. With Premium, the selection expands to include hundreds of classic games from the original PlayStation, PS2, PS3, and PSP.

How Much Does PlayStation Plus Cost?

The cost of PS Plus varies depending on which plan you opt for. You can get a subscription for one, three, or twelve months. These plans renew automatically until canceled.

One month Three months Twelve months
Essential $9.99 $24.99 $59.99
Extra $14.99 $39.99 $99.99
Premium $17.99 $49.99 $119.99

While you get a discount if you lock in for a longer subscription, you might want to try a month or two first before committing. This way you can figure out which tier is best for you.

How to Sign Up to PlayStation Plus

Perhaps the easiest way to sign up to PS Plus is through your PS4 or PS5. Just go to the PlayStation Store, look for the PS Plus section, and make your selection.

Alternatively, you can use the PlayStation website. Simply add your desired membership to the cart, sign in to your Sony account, and complete checkout.

subscribe to playstation plus

Whichever method you choose, you’ll need to have a PlayStation Network account if you haven’t already.

How to Get a Free Trial for PlayStation Plus

If you are signing up to PS Plus for the first time, you can claim a free seven-day trial for the Extra or Premium tiers via the PS Store. There is no trial for the Essential tier. It’s worth selecting the Premium membership so that you can get the full taste of PS Plus—just remember to downgrade or cancel if you don’t want to pay for it post-trial.

At the end of the trial, your paid subscription will automatically begin. To cancel your PS Plus subscription on your PS5, go to Settings > Users and Accounts > Account > Payment and Subscriptions > Subscriptions > PlayStation Plus > Cancel Subscription.

Is PlayStation Plus Worth It?

If you love playing games on your PS4 or PS5, there’s no doubt that PlayStation Plus is worth it. You can take the action online in multiplayer, nab loads of great free games, and enjoy additional benefits like in-game cosmetics and discounts.

Even if you just get it for the games, it’s worth it. Consider the annual cost of $59.99 for the Essential plan. You’d pay that alone for one new PS5 game. With PS Plus, you’re getting around 30 games a year; that’s not even counting the hundreds included in the Extra and Premium plans, which makes it even more of a steal.

The only reason it might not be worthwhile is if you don’t have time to play games regularly. In that circumstance, it might be cheaper to buy the games as you need them. That way, you can go at your own pace and not worry about your subscription running out.

If you own an Xbox, Microsoft also offers something similar. But signing up to both services might not be affordable for you, so decide which console is your priority.

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