Now I know I’m slightly late to the party… around 12 days late. But all tardiness aside, PlayStation has once again not disappointed in the realm of their free game releases via PlayStation Plus. This month we have an all-star cast of hack-and-slash action giants, a first-class FPS, an indie psychological horror (*shudder*), a new free addition to the PlayLink service, a nifty puzzle title and a true gaming classic.
First things first, let’s start with the big daddy: God of War. Who doesn’t love senseless violence and vengeance-driven anarchy? Our dear friend Kratos is definitely a fan, as this epic takes him to the glistening peaks of Mount Olympus to end the seemingly tyrannous reign of the gods. You’d think this would be quite the impossible feat, but when the game begins with a full-blown battle against Poseidon culminating in arguably one of the most shocking and goriest death scenes in video game history, you quickly change your opinion on the matter. This is definitely not a game to miss out on, especially for free and especially if you’re a fan of button-mashing style combat. Be warned though, this game is definitely rated 18+ for a very good reason – not for the faint of heart.
Destiny 2 – Bungie
If you want a futuristic shooter done right (sorry Black Ops 3 and so on), then you need look no further than this absolute masterpiece of an FPS. Now, it should be mentioned that there is a bit of learning curve if you haven’t played the original Destiny game, for example getting to know all of the primary characters and the back story and this can be a little daunting. Furthermore, to really get the most out of the game it’s worth having some friends available for the six-person raid missions. But overlooking these, this game serves well as a strong example for what FPS games can aspire to be. Want to go to town on a flurry of mindless enemy minions? Go right ahead. Fancy taking some noobs back to school in the Crucible? Again, go right ahead. Destiny 2 offers a comprehensive PvE and PvP experience and does so by taking the best elements of the two, seamlessly combining them into a well thought out fully immersive experience. Furthermore, the expansion packs have added above and beyond what we could have expected from any DLC in this day and age.
Another World – 20th Anniversary Edition – Delphine Software
Another World – or Out of This World, or Outer World – is held in high regard for its use of cinematic effects and real-time cutscenes, which is fair to agree with considering it was originally released for Amiga and Atari ST in 1991 and still holds true to this day. The 20th-anniversary edition brings the standard remaster package with the high polish and an upgrade to HD graphics. As a result of a failed experiment involving a particle accelerator and lightning – not an ideal cocktail let me tell you – our scientist main character is transported to… wait for it… Another World. You must battle your way through various intelligent life forms that mean to prevent you from returning home at all costs. Bare in mind this is quite a short game, you can probably aim to get through the bulk of it within half an hour, but a definite go to if you’re into your retro games.
Qube: Directors Cut – Toxic Games
Qube is a beautiful little puzzle game with a certain air of a Portal to it. I will say that when I originally played this game I found the backstory distracting, the ending extremely anti-climactic and downright frustrating. However, if you were to remove the game’s backstory, what you’d be left with it is a nifty puzzler with some innovative gameplay mechanics, controlling a series of movable blocks and panels from your very fingertips – seriously. As you’d expect the puzzles begin easy and tend toward the harder side of things the further you progress, to the point where they become very crafty and mind-bending, with later puzzles adding full physics-based challenges and laser beam style puzzles. I will say, this is quite a short game but it’s definitely the sort of thing you can blitz in an afternoon if you fancy it. Furthermore, if you do happen to have a Portal-shaped hole in your life then this is a very good option for you.
Foul Play – Devolver Digital
Imagine you’ve gone to see a play in the National Theatre, but once you arrived you realised the stage was several hundred miles long and you finally realised that’s where your hard earned tax money was going. Well, congratulations because you just made it to the set of Foul Play! Yes, Devolver delivers yet another truly unique platform for their 2013 platformer, brawler, adventure game. Traditionally this game is set for a Coop effort, but also caters for solo play if you have no friends like me (sad face). You play is a pair of Whitechapel Indiana Jones-esque explorers/treasure hunters, battling those who attempt to cut you out of lucrative deals, whilst the main playable character regales the tale to the ludicrously large audience. Silly and original, this is definitely not a game to miss out on, especially if you have a pal on hand to help you out.
Sparkle 2 – 10ton Ltd.
If you’re a fan of simplistic arcade puzzlers with a mobile feel to them, then you’re in the right market for Sparkle 2. If you’ve ever played the sort of bubble bursting track based variety of arcade puzzle games then you know what sort of thing to expect from Sparkle 2 – colourful orbs flow around a track and it’s your job to stop them from reaching the end by matching three by firing other colourful bubbles into the track. Furthermore, with overwhelmingly positive ratings on the PlayStation Store, this is definitely not a game to shy away from if you’ve got a spare ten minutes to kill before you head off to work.
Here They Lie – Santa Monica Studio
I’ll be honest; when I first saw the thumbnail for Here They Lie I wasn’t to know that it was a horror game. If I was smart enough to watch the trailer first I would have realised, but hindsight is a wonderful thing. I’ll be honest again; I am delightfully weak when it comes to the horror game genre, so you can imagine how I felt playing this. If you are into this sort of thing, or if you just want a laugh playing this with your mates or significant other, then, by all means, give this a download. It starts off routinely tame but generally starts to ramp up the further you get into it. The backstory to Here They Lie seems to suggest there’s a There’s a real P.T. vibe to this game, so if you’re into you psychological thrillers with aspects of horror then I can recommend this one. I may judge you for it though… Oh and if you wanted things to get even more terrifying for your playthrough, this game offers VR functionality – an interesting way to spice things up for the downright fearless among you.
Knowledge is Power – Wish Studios
Finally, we come to the latest free addition to PlayStations PlayLink service: Knowledge is Power. Simply download the app on your phone and away you go with this funky quiz show style party game. Test your wits and smarts against your friends, acquaintances, enemies or pets for the prize of personal prowess and bragging rights in this quickfire question-answering bonanza. Furthermore, should you be incredibly gifted in the art of brain power, you may get the chance to earn specific power-ups in order to slow your fellow contestants down, making your sail to the top that much more graceful. Yes, if you’re planning a house party for friends who haven’t filled their phone storage with copious amounts of food and dog pictures, then I’d say this is a good way to burn through an easy half hour whilst simultaneously running your friendships – true monopoly style.
That brings things to a close for this month. If I’m completely honest this is probably one of the best months so far for the PlayStation Plus Freebies so I’m excited to see how they’ll follow up with things for October. Until then, be sure to give your favourites a go and let us know what you think.