Some Perspective on the Sony Freebies Row

Many people seem to be quite angry with the compensation package offered by Sony as part of their apology to the PlayStation community. With the choice of games to choose from being on the older end of the spectrum, a lot of gamers are a bit miffed that the games are either past their sell-by date or a blatant advert for upcoming titles.

You can sort of see the point they’re making. Infamous could be seen as a perfect way of getting people excited about Infamous 2 which is out in a few weeks, and LittleBigPlanet could easily tempt the non-believers into picking up LBP2 which has been out for a few months. On top of that, the one month free PS+ subscription is having people grumbling about another advertising opportunity seized.

But let’s consider the options Sony had. Maybe it’ll become clear we’ve ended up with something quite reasonable.

Option 1: Sod ’em
It would’ve been very easy for Sony to point to the price we all pay for the PSN (i.e nothing at all) and offer the same in return. There was no obligation to offer some free stuff to PSN members after the outage, and doing so was not only a welcome sign of good will but also a pleasant surprise to some. If you’re pissed off about what has been offered, imagine how pleased you’d be if they didn’t bother at all.

Option 2: A month of PS+
PS+ is part of the “Welcome Back” package – if you don’t like it, don’t keep it. Some see it as a pointless extra, others swear by the features it offers. Either way, a lot of people expected the compensation to just be a month of PS+, after all it wouldn’t cost Sony anything until people started making the most of the discounts, and even then they’d be selling stuff they might not ordinarily have sold to those gamers. Yes we’re getting a free month, but that’s not all…

Option 3: Free Downloadable Games
A huge number of people were insisting on this. “I’ve not been able to play online, I demand nine copies of Modern Warfare 3”. Get real. The games had to be downloadable and already available. People wouldn’t want to wait until November for a reward for staying loyal to the Sony cause. The point of offering the games that they have, is that they’re already on the PSN to download so they can offer them out to members as soon as the store gets back on its feet.

Option 4: Free Retail Games
Why did the games have to be downloadable? Because of the time and manpower needed to send a free retail boxed game to every PS3 owner in the world. There are a lot of people with a PS3, and for each person to be sent a full game, never mind two full games, would have taken a massive amount of time and money. If we want the PSN to remain free, this sort of extravagance needs to be avoided. I’m sure most people would be delighted with a free copy of L.A.Noire, but then not so thrilled when Sony emailed you to tell you they were going to charge £30 a year for online gaming.

Option 5: Free Downloads of Anything for a Month
I didn’t see this suggested anywhere, but it wouldn’t surprise me if I heard that some people were hoping for this. Full access to download anything they wanted from the store for a whole month without paying a penny. Meanwhile, they could look out the window and see a flock of pigs in perfect formation gliding over the nearby fields.


These options cover the full range of possibilities, and while it’s true that the games on offer aren’t the most up to date titles around, they are some of the finest games available for download at the present time. If you’ve got them already, then that’s just plain unlucky. If you’re already a PS+ subscriber then you still get an extra free month, and everyone is getting the free identity protection.

Yes, some people will be unhappy. Yes, some people won’t get a lot out of this. But let’s be honest, Sony didn’t have to offer us anything. Option 1 was very much a possibility and we shouldn’t lose sight of that. Personally I reckon it’s a fairly generous package that Sony have put forwards, and with a Wipeout sized gap in my gaming collection it’s an offer I’m grateful for and will take advantage of, especially considering I didn’t miss the PSN all that much.

It’s time to stop complaining, take it on the chin and move on. If you’re unhappy, tough. Moaning won’t change the offer, nor will it make you any friends. If Sony have upset you that much then trade up for a 360 and get ready to miss out on some incredible exclusives this year. But you’ll have a reliable online service with XBL, and that’s all the counts, right? If the welcome back package isn’t your thing, and that alone is enough for you to jump ship, then the community won’t miss you.


  1. So Sony make amends by offering people 2 games that 90% already own? LBP2 maybe, but the original? You can buy it for

    • Why do people talk from their own perspective and then make up ridiculous statistics to support their case? It’s so obvious and utterly retarded I can’t imagine what planet you people live on, when you say things like ‘90% of people own the games on offer’. You do know that’s a load of horse dung, don’t you?

      All of the games offered only sold a couple million each, if not less. There are 77 million PSN accounts, I think you’ll find that your made-up-on-the-spot statistics make more sense the other way around – 90% of people DON’T own the games on offer.

      Believe it or not, the people whinging like little bitches over this are, in fact, the minority.

      Sony don’t owe you anything, so be grateful you got a game that is worth

      • please stop talking shit.

        so what if 1million people own those games? regardless of the games being free, wtf makes you think they would download the game for free?
        people are interested in certain games and genres, it doesn’t mean that a game going free will be downloaded by every one.
        Much like demos, demos are free yet millions of people don’t even download demos.

        77million accounts…oh geez…maths is arriving. 48 million ps3 sold so far so how the hell do the stats came up with 77? if there are 60 million psp sold…60MILL!? That even exceeds ps3’s sales.

        Let’s move away from the numbers because we know sony are altering with the sales numbers not to loose face.

        Those free games, Sony are using a cheap way to buy people’s cry out. Those games are the best sellers and highest rated games, if a game is regarded as highest rated majority or every would obviously buy the damn game.

        Now think about it for those free games, majority of people already downloaded them leaving 46million users from trying those games. Why didn’t the 46m pay and download the game? because it’s not in their interest, even if its going free they still wouldn’t download them!

        Because if they will download them, then everyone should be downloading demos.

        Why should I be grateful for things I’ve paid for and get for free? everyone is complaining and asking Sony to credit our account so we can choose what we like. Is that too much to ask?

        unless you are just a sony slave sucking up to their ass because you are their loyal servants much like everyone else who do not complain about this rip off.

        • Xino, chill out a bit. These guys are entitled to their opinion, so please stop ripping into them for it. Voice how you feel sure, but ease off on the aggression.

  2. I can’t stand people like you!

    please stop trying to be a freaking journalist!
    You are not!
    If you can manage to understand wtf is going on or the situation why bother laying out an opinion or writing an article!?

    The first sub header Sod’Em.
    Seriously wtf are you talking about?
    why should I even read the rest of the naive writings?

    Yes PSN is free however people are paying for some services!
    LoveFilm, Quriocity and PSN+.
    PSN+ mainly grants access to PSN Store, however some things you download can only be used if you are connected online or still a PSN member.

    So if people are paying for a service they can’t offer, why shouldn’t they complain?

    • Easy tiger, I think you’ve taken a few bits here out of context.

      Firstly, this is an opinion piece. If you don’t agree with what’s written then that’s perfectly within your right, but coming on here and being so abusive will get you nowhere.

      The first sub-heading was merely one of the options Sony had, and reflected the possibility that they may have given PS3 owners no compensation at all. The fact I didn’t use a formal Daily Mail style title was that this isn’t the Daily Mail, it’s an informal and independent gaming site.

      The last two paragraphs you wrote have some weight to them on their own, but they make so sense in relation to the article. The idea of complaining about the downtime was never discussed, not even in passing. This is to do with the Welcome Back package.

      Wake up and think a little before ranting. It seems ironic that you criticise for not being aware of the situation when you haven’t actually understood the article.

  3. it’s a meaningless gesture by sony, the games on offer are rubbish and a free month of this and a free month of that is meaningless to me, i play games like killzone, battlefield, call of duty, football manager, medal of honour ect so i won’t be downloading the free games and i don’t download demo’s either

    let’s not forget the severity of the psn being hacked, our details were compromised, that’s huge and very damaging, we were unable to play our on-line games which we paid for due to sony’s poor network security

    personally i’m ready to jump ship to the xbox after this, sony have made a poor effort to compensate us, free psn or not we buy their products and trust the company to protect our data, they are one of the richest compnaies in the world, they could have let us at least pick any two games from 2010 to download like battlefield 2, killzone 2 ect and not tell us, here is all you are getting

    sony do have a moral right to compensate us, i think my ps3 will now become a permanent dvd player or used to stream data from my server to my tv upstairs, doubt i will buy any more play station products ever again

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