PlayStation Plus Deluxe subscribers in New Zealand to get two-hour trials of new games - report

The PlayStation 5 controller
There is some concern regarding the impact on independent game creators. Photo credit: Getty Images

Subscribers of the new PlayStation Plus Deluxe tier in Aotearoa will reportedly get at least two hours to try out new games for free before purchasing.

Sony confirmed earlier this week that Kiwi gamers were going to be asked to pay up to $24.95 per month if they want to take full advantage of the new subscription offerings.

Deluxe is a watered down version of the Premium tier that will launch for countries that currently have access to the Now game streaming service. It will be the only tier in New Zealand offering the time-limited trials.

According to website GameDeveloper, Sony has begun communicating with developers about the new trials, with any games selling for a wholesale price of US$34 or more required to provide at least a two-hour tryout.

Games that cost less or games already released will not be required to provide trials, and there will be flexibility over the policy.

Developers will have up to three months after the game launches to make the trial available, and it only has to be offered for 12 months, according to the report. Additionally, VR games will not be required to offer trials.

There is mixed information regarding the extra work of having to create the mandatory trials, however.

GameDeveloper noted "if you're a developer planning to release on the PlayStation store in the future, you now need to budget time and resources to create these new timed trials."

But Kotaku writer Ethan Gach said this could be done by Sony on behalf of the developers.

"Source tells me PlayStation Store team will create the two hour timed trials for developers, so it shouldn't be extra work," Gach tweeted.

"Though I've heard concerns from others about Sony monetising a perk and not sharing that revenue with studios."

That could still be a potential issue for independent developers whose games may just be above the cutoff price point, with two hours potentially a significant part of their games.

"Savvy developers can maximise those trials into opportunities to acquire new players, but with no promise of payout at the end it could risk being a lot of work for limited payoff," GameDeveloper said.

Sony's top two subscription tiers are more expensive than Microsoft's Game Pass Ultimate service, which costs $19.95 per month in Aotearoa and offers more. That package allows subscribers to play on both PC and Xbox, and includes games from Xbox Game Studios franchises like Halo and Forza on the day they're released.

Xbox Game Pass subscribers also get access to EA's Play service, which costs an additional $6.95 per month for PlayStation Plus subscribers in New Zealand.