Digging into the Playstation Plus

pspMan, this Playstation Plus thing is confusing, right? Well, be confused no more, because right here you’ll find the full rundown, with all the details we know about it so far, on how the PSN’s new premium service will work in North America, Europe and Asia.

Yesterday we brought you the info on Playstation Plus provided at Sony’s E3 presser and the Plus website. Now we have much more to offer. The list:

  • Price: North Americans and Europeans can purchase memberships in chunks of three months or a year for $17.99/$14.99 and $49.99/$49.99, respectively. In Japan and Asia it’s a little different. There, memberships can be bought by the month for 500 yen/HK$38 and yearly for 5,000 yen/HK$233.
  • Game Trials: Plus members in all regions will be able to download and try certain titles, both PSN games and retail games, for some designated period of time (an hour, probably). Once time is up, users can buy the game and keep their saves, and any trophies earned during the trial will be unlocked upon purchase.
  • Free Stuff: Plus members in all regions will receive some designated-by-Sony free full games every month. The European Playstation blog says folks will get one PSN game, one PSone Classic and two Minis. That won’t be the deal in Japan, because Minis aren’t sold in the Japanese Playstation Store. All three regions will also score DLC, episodes of Qore, Home avatar schwag and premium themes. You only get to keep this stuff as long as you keep your Plus membership.
  • Deals on Downloads: Plus members in all region will get certain discounted games every month, with prices slashed by 20-50%. The Japanese Playstation blog says deals will become active the third Wednesday of every month, but that might just be in Japan.
  • Early Access: Plus members in all regions will get early access to some game demos, betas and video crap.
  • Auto Downloads: Plus membership in all regions will allow you to tell your PS3 to automatically download and install updates for you games and demos and download (not install) console updates when you aren’t around. You can set the time for the PS3 to do this, and it will do it, even if it’s off at the time.
  • Promo Deals: The Plus website says if you buy a year, you get an extra three months free, and that could be only North america, or it could be all regions. And in Europe, if you sign up for Plus before August 3, you’ll get a free digital copy of LittleBigPlanet.

Now, here’s what the US Playstation blog says about what’s coming the first month: “At launch, PlayStation Plus will offer subscribers the full PlayStation Network game WipEout HD, full game trial of inFAMOUS, PSP minis and PS One Classics such as Fieldrunners, Age of Zombies and Rally Cross, as well as premium avatars, themes and DLC levels and map packs.”

There you go. Think about it long and hard. Plus goes active June 29 all over the damn world.

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