- Earn its place in the world
- Provide Outstanding Value to PlayStation Gamers and Gaming as a whole
- Innovate and break down expectations and traditional ways in a digital world
- Much more...
Diving straight into things, Sony at the moment mistakenly believes that they have an infinite pool of people that would jump at PlayStation Now and be instantly in love with it. This is wrong. In fact there are only Three types of scenarios or people that would ever use PSNow:
- The Water Tester. This is the person who may or may not have a PS3. He's heard of all these great games on the PS3 platform and he would like to see if they are worth the money. He will use PSNow to test drive a game and then he will either purchase his own copy or if the game is short enough, he may decide to rent it for a longer period.
- The Casual Enthusiast. This person may or may not have previously sampled a game using the water testing method. He potentially does not have a PS3 to play that particular game he just fell in love with or he figures that he can finish the game and put it down all at a cheaper price to buying his own copy. i.e. If he does not have a PS3, buying that game would require an extra $200 investment that may not be justified as he's mostly a PS4 Game player.
- The Extended Play Aficionado. These guys will require a subscription model. They are the guys that do not have a PS3, play mostly PS4 games so cannot justify the investment, love the PS3 game library and will eventually enjoy PSNow's expansion onto other devices. This could include those that do not have a PS4 down the line as PSNow gets released for Vita & TVs.
- The Water Testing Option. This will be the option that most people will use and is therefore the one that should make the most sense. In this space, I will detail a few significant changes that need to be made across PSNow as a whole.
Furthermore, prices should be standard for all game rentals. Make $2.99 standard as the cheapest option. Do not worry, we will tremendously increase the value of this proposition next.
The Water Testing Option should cost $2.99 and offer the following:
- 24 Hours of Game Time or Up to 40% of the game Progress.
- Whichever comes first.
- 1 Month to play
So someone who borrows a linear game such as: The Last of Us, Darksiders, Dishonored, will be restricted to 40% of that game's progress. Whereas someone who borrows an RPG or Open Sandbox game: Skyrim, Infamous Series, Assassin's Creed Series, will be limited by the 24 Game Hours.
Both offer plenty of influence to gauge whether a game is worth investing more money into.
2. The Casually Enthused Plan. This option should cost $10 per game and offer:
- 200 Hours Game Time ( That's just over 8 days)
- No restriction on the game progress with.
- 3 Months to play.
For reference, TLOU would take you about 70 Hours to do all the playthroughs for every trophy and 20 Hours for the Multiplayer Trophy. This means to Platinum The Last of Us, you would need roughly 90 Hours game time and do so comfortably.
Assassin's Creed Typically takes about 20 Hours to complete the first playthrough and another 40 to Platinum ( Multiplayer included).
Dishonored takes about 80 Hours to Platinum. Mass Effect 2 takes about 70 Hours. Etc...
3. The Subscription Model. This option should cost up to $150 per year and offer:
- Unlimited Game Rentals at no extra cost
- No restrictions on Game Hours
- No restrictions on Game Progress
The above action will only help PSNow to earn its place amongst us mortals with limited budgets. This does not however provide outstanding value. No, in order for PSNow to actually be amazing value (The way PS+ is), it will need to do a few more things right.
- Not be treated as a separate entity but tie into the PlayStation Ecosystem.
- Be Reliable, Fast and as Lag free as possible.
- Not add any other negative stipulations that will muddy the waters
- Offer up the entire PlayStation Game library including PS1 & PS2 classics
- Expand to the other platforms as soon as possible.
- The Water Tester option should be a risk free trial period. This would mean that if you pay $2.99 for a game and are then tempted to buy it from the PS Store, it should credit you those $2.99 as long as you purchase within the original 1 Month period.
- This would be only for the Water Testing Option. But I think you can all see how this makes perfect sense.
- Deeper ties with PS+. If you have a PS+ subscription, then the games that are in the IGC should be free for you to stream with PSNow. And if you took a subscription just before a game hits the IGC then for the duration of its stay there, it will not count towards your game hours for the duration of its stay in the IGC. If you own a game through PS+, but it is no longer in the IGC, then PSNow would work as normal.
- The above stipulations only benefit the Water Tester & Casual Enthusiast. The Extended play Aficionado should therefore receive a discount on PS+ with their PSNow subscription or a discount on PSNow if they are already a PS+ subscriber. If a Person has PS+, PSNow should cost about $125 per year. If a person is buying PSNow, then a bundle should be offered for PSNow + PS Plus at $175 per year.
In conclusion, doing all of the above will tremendously improve what is Playstation Now. Truly offer gamers an alternative and provide a shift in the gaming industry that should have happened five years ago. This new PSNow would cater to those who are more selective, with the a la carte model. As well as those who truly embrace game streaming the subscription model. It will better tie with other PlayStation Services such as the PS Store & PS+ for a true ecosystem experience. Finally, it will renew Sony's drive to innovate and put gamers first.
Sony, if you're reading this, put your gamers first and we will give you more money than you thought possible. We did it with the PS1, PS2 and are doing it with the PS4. Put us first and you'll receive all the rest.