New details have emerged about the time-limited game trials that Sony previously announced as part of its new PlayStation Plus Premium subscription tier. According to sources speaking to game developer these free trials will be required for any game with a wholesale price of $34 (€33) or more, and must last a minimum of two hours. They won’t be needed for previously released games or PlayStation VR titles.
game developerThe initial report raised concerns that forcing developers to offer these time-limited trials could place a significant burden on small teams. However, Kotaku’s Ethan Gach reports that the PlayStation Store team will create the trials, suggesting the developers shouldn’t have to do any extra work.
The source tells me that the PlayStation Store team will be creating the 2 hour timed trials for developers, so it shouldn’t be extra work, although I’ve heard concerns from other people about monetizing a advantage by Sony and the non-sharing of these revenues with the studios https://t.co/0fYZZSVQxq
— AmericanTruckSongs8 (@etangach) April 27, 2022
Custom demos with original content might be allowed in some cases, rather than providing a time-limited slice of the original game depending on game developer, but in any case, developers will have to offer a trial version within three months of a title going on sale and be available for at least a year. Developers will still be able to offer promotional materials like Free Play Weekends outside of the PlayStation Plus Premium tier.
This seems like good news for anyone considering signing up to Sony’s $18-per-month PlayStation Plus Premium tier, which is currently slated for release in the US on June 13 and Europe on June 22. If accurate, these reports suggest that time-limited trials will be widely available for premium-priced titles, and two hours is a decent amount of time to determine if a game is worth buying.
But Kotaku raised concerns that offering time-limited trials could potentially impact sales, with people getting their fill of a game from a limited demo rather than making a purchase. On the other hand, a trial might encourage a purchase from someone who was previously on the fence.