As we trundle inexorably towards the meteorological uncertainty that is the great British summer, our thoughts turn to those of attempting to eat ice cream in gale-force winds, which waterproof swimwear is the most appealing and how, sweet digital gaming overlords, can we get more free games to play on our Playstations after we have tired of chasing those elusive rays of sun. As always, the kind souls at Sony have you covered with a fistful of gaming gold to keep your calloused digits busy over the next few weeks.
Of course, nothing is ever completely free and this holds especially true for PS Plus titles. Even although there are a number of free-to-play titles available to play on your PS4 or PS5 platform, access to the monthly treasure trove of free games is locked tightly behind the paywall that is a Playstation Plus subscription. As most of us won’t plough through 3 or 4 games per month, there’s also a handy feature that allows you to add a Plus game to your library without downloading it, although it’s worth remembering that you will require an active subscription to play any PS Plus game added to your library.
WRECKFEST: DRIVE HARD, DIE LAST
Okay, the title might be a clunky overreaching riff on a Die Hard joke but don’t let first impressions fool you. Wreckfest is in fact a punishing driving simulator that offers a wealth of vehicular carnage not available in your Gran Turismos and Forzas. Get behind the wheel of a reasonably-priced car and make a name for yourself in the demolition derby circuit by winning races with up to 24 players and/or smashing your opponents to scrap, buying new vehicles with your winnings and upgrading them to withstand the ultimate driving test!
Wreckfest has been in development for 4 years and is considered the spiritual successor to the FlatOut and Destruction Derby series, both famous for their vehicular combat. While Wreckfest definitely fulfils those Mad Max-style high-octane car combat fantasies, it uses a highly detailed damage-mapping system (called ‘soft body modelling’) that allows for incredibly realistic deforming of the vehicle models and rewards strategic play from those drivers who favour skill over brute force. It’s not just about destroying the competition, it’s about doing it without destroying your ride into the bargain!
Wreckfest has something for every petrolhead: spectacular crashes, white-knuckle races and in-depth vehicle modding to create your very own distinct metal monster!
Available on PS5 only from May 4.
As the first-person competitive shooter alternative to Call of Duty for what feels like forever at this point, Battlefield needs little to no introduction, but for those who have never dabbled, the series places a greater emphasis on large-scale arenas, incorporating era-appropriate vehicles than CoD. Battlefield V takes the series back to its roots to offer an unforgettable take on the horrors of World War II.
As has become tradition with the franchise, Battlefield V‘s single-player campaign is composed of a series of War Stories, each telling a different side of the conflict from a varying perspectives. Squad-based co-operative play for up to 4 players is the order of the day in Combined Arms, a set of specially designed missions that randomly generate content each time to ensure that no two scenarios and objectives are alike. Of course, PvP takes place on an epic scale in the Grand Operations mode, where 64-player battles rage across multiple gigantic maps that simulate an ongoing campaign from WWII. A new addition for Battlefield V, Firestorm is a Battlefield take on the popular battle royale genre where players fight to the last person standing, dogged constantly by a literal firestorm that decreases the play-area throughout the match.
Available for PS4 and PS5 from May 4.
The last title for this month rounds out a line-up of diverse genres in the form of a survival game. Stranded Deep, as the title suggests, deposits players in the middle of the Pacific Ocean after a mysterious plane crash. With nothing but a small life-raft, a compass and emergency rations to work with, players must explore a series of procedurally generated islands in order to survive and find a means of escape back to civilisation.
As with most games in the genre, Stranded Deep is a game of gauges: health, thirst, hunger and sleep will all need to be monitored and maintained to ensure survival, and, with no familiar adventure game hand-holding, players must use their wits and ingenuity to meet those needs. Using found and fashioned tools, structures – ranging from simple bamboo to brick – can be constructed to shelter against Stranded Deep’s dynamic weather and day/night cycle. Those same tools can also be used to improve your transport options, crafting larger boats with greater carrying capacity to a gyrocopter for long range-scouting.
As if having to contend with a complete lack of modern-day conveniences in a survival situation wasn’t enough of a challenge, players aren’t the only thing in these islands trying to survive. The game features accurate depictions of the local biome, from lush vegetation that can be harvested to spectacular undersea environments to explore, full of mysterious wrecks and terrifying predators like the Great White Shark. Legend has it that there are also three mythical creatures that hunt in these uncharted waters, animals never seen before by human eyes…
Available for PS4 and PS5 from May 4.
So that’s your Playstation gaming forecast for May: intermittently sunny with a chance of driving, shooting and surviving – not a bad haul for the generous price tag of nothing. Keep up to date with all of the latest PS Plus info right here and we’ll see you in June to see what springs forth from Sony’s bag of goodies.