Steve! In Adventures with Playstation Plus

Yes, even more shambolic than this

Last month’s original Plus update was a shambles – one PSN game free for just two weeks, a PSOne classic that was entirely in Japanese and eventually withdrawn from the Store altogether and a week late, reduced Halloween offering compared to the US store. I’ve moaned a lot about the disparity shown by Sony between the two regions, but this was taking the biscuit, submerging it in the ocean and then throwing the soggy, salty remains on your face. This month’s offerings needed to be good to restore a lot of the faith lost, so what have they done?

Hydrophobia Prophecy (PSN): What’s this? A brand new release? And absolutely free on day 1? Now that’s far better already. Released last year to opinions ranging from pitiful to alright, the game underwent a massive revamp as a result, and Dark Energy have turned a below par game into something far, far better than the original. A full review will follow next week.

The perennial Playstation superstar

Crash Bandicoot 1, 2, 3 and Crash Team Racing (PSOne Classics): Crash was Playstation’s first mascot and we see all four of his Naughty Dog outings for free this month (that’s a heck of a lot of Australian marsupial) coinciding neatly with the release of ND’s latest game, Uncharted 3. The second game (Cortex Strikes Back) is my favourite by a long-shot, but all of these games deserve the title of PSOne classics.

Where Is My Heart? (mini): Minis get a bad rap in the gaming communities, but this one deserves a lot of plaudits. A simple puzzle game involving three characters is made all the more intriguing by each level’s screen being split into fragments shuffled across the screen. Add in more interesting game mechanics, such as rotation and parallel, inverted worlds and you get one of the best minis I’ve seen for a long time. Even better, it’s exclusive to the EU store, meaning we actually got more content than the US this month.

Rumble Trucks (mini): Ah, now this is why minis get a bad rap. A stunt-car racing game with poor gameplay and dull levels. Really not worth your time, especially with games like Joe Danger and Trials around.

Add to the freebies some fairly hefty discounts on Tales from Space: About a Blob (70%) and Hard Corps: Uprising (50%) and you have yourselves this months updat.

Verdict: 9/10
More content than the US, brand new free games and one of gaming’s best series for free. Even one of the minis is pretty damn good. Well done SCEE, but keep it up, alright?


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