Did you catch ’em all?
Did you take Sony up on any of its you-actually-get-to-keep-it free games like Uncharted: The Nathan Drake Collection, Astro Bot Rescue Mission, and Subnautica? Plenty of us did. Tens of millions, in fact. According to the latest figures from Sony, to date, “players have redeemed more than 60 million games” from the Play at Home promotion.
Further breaking it down, players nabbed 30 million games from “indie partners,” 11 million PS VR games, and “more than 4 million add-ons and pieces of in-game content.” The fact that you didn’t need a paid PS Plus subscription to participate went a long way.
PlayStation began giving away free games “as everybody was struggling with the first [COVID-19] lockdown,” as Sony Interactive Entertainment CEO Jim Ryan put it in a new interview with GamesIndustry.biz. There was a bit of something for everyone.
The Play at Home promo started in April 2020 with Uncharted and Journey, resurfaced in March 2021 with Ratchet & Clank, quickly followed that up with 10 more PS4 games including Horizon Zero Dawn, and returned in May with in-game content for titles like Rocket League and Warframe. That feels like just yesterday — and three years ago.
According to Ryan, Sony is “very happy with the reaction” to Play at Home, but looking ahead? “If lockdown, heaven forbid, if that should continue into 2022 and beyond, who knows? We might feel we have to do it again. We’ll wait and see,” he told GI.biz.
The real question is: did you play anything of this stuff or just redeem it?
Either way, I feel like these free games — especially Sony’s own selections — were so calculated in a brand-boosting way. It was really smart of them to essentially bundle some great PlayStation VR games with several high-profile indies in one giveaway event. That base keeps growing while we wait for the PS5’s PlayStation VR model.