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Is Sony Slapping PS Plus Members in the Face with DriveClub?

Brendan Griffiths
DriveClub, Evolution Studios, PS Plus, PS4 games, Racing Games, Sony

Is Sony Slapping PS Plus Members in the Face with DriveClub?

Earlier this week, DriveClub's new director Paul Rustchynsky responded to comments about the PS Plus Edition of the game to give readers some much wanted details about the upcoming racing game. When asked how the full-priced retail edition and the PS Plus version would differ he said: "The difference is that you only have 10 cars and you can only race in one country (which gives you access to 5 tracks with 11 distinct variants)."

It wasn't long before disgruntled gamers started to question the rather thin nature of the release, especially seeing as earlier interviews with Sony and Evolution implied that the PS Plus Edition would appear, by most standards, to have content akin to that of a full-sized game and the full-priced version was going to be more of an extras-packed version, something more like the special editions we see ahead of other releases.

Rustchynsky replied with: "The PlayStation Plus Edition hasn’t changed. It’s hardly a demo because you get access to all of the game’s features online and offline."

Is Sony Slapping PS Plus Members in the Face with DriveClub?

To be fair, the last racing demo I played only had three tracks and three cars. So maybe those he's right, but his silence was notable when asked how many tracks and cars would be in the final game -you'd imagine ballpark figures would be at least be available.

Has the original vision for the PS Plus version changed over the course of the game's troubled development? Considering the game will be nearly a year late IF it makes its October release date, you have to wonder if this bulimic purging of content is a way of pushing gamers towards the full-fat version in order to recover the costs for that extended dev time. Other signs point towards the developers' goals taking a beating, such as the Crew Club limit for you and your friends halving from twelve to six, the frame-rate being locked to 30FPS and the main reason for the delay being them wanting to nail those all-important "dynamic menus."

PlayStation gamers have been treated well with their PS Plus membership, with regular full-sized big name titles available for the price of membership. There's also no denying that PS3 and Vita gamers have benefited the most, while PS4 gamers have been left with some notably niche titles that certainly don't have as much of a general appeal. Xbox 360 gamers that moved onto a PS4 are probably wondering what the hell all the fuss was about.

Is Sony Slapping PS Plus Members in the Face with DriveClub?

To be fair, the PS4 is still relatively new and I'd be surprised if we get anything as large as Killzone: Shadow Fall before the console's first anniversary. But DriveClub has always been the one we were looking forward to, with so many interviews implying that we'd be able to play the full game without forking out for the retail edition. But now we know that the PS Plus Edition won't even let gamers finish the Tour Mode.

Rushy even went as far as to say on a NeoGaf post, "- You can earn the platinum trophy in the PS+ Edition, remember it's the full game minus a few cars/tracks."

This plundered edition is hardly in-line with PS Plus's history. If Sony had said subscribers would be getting access to a 'significant demo' or a 'large beta' this wouldn't be an issue. But they've made a mistake by chucking it in with the rest of their Instant Game Collection. So perhaps we're right to accuse them of watering down PS Plus' upcoming racer of being nothing more than a paid demo.

I got my hands on a brief demo of DriveClub at last year's Eurogamer Expo, and you can read my thoughts on it here. My best advice for anyone craving a racing game at the moment though is to pick up Gran Turismo 6 on the PS3, as I've found it well worth the time after originally dismissing it for the (then) 'coming soon' DriveClub.

Other reading:

Sony Coy On Western DriveClub Release. But Why?: by Brendan Griffiths.

Driveclub Hands-On Preview | It's A Driving Game: by Matt Gardner.

Add a comment10 comments
Lanbreaker  May. 4, 2014 at 01:51

Games are expensive to make. Do you expect companies to just give you all or most of a just-launched triple-A title for free? Let's be realistic here.

Ra3030  May. 4, 2014 at 02:31

Wow my friend I did read your article and I gotta be honest it came across as a if it was written at Microsoft HQ by and intern being given orders from Phil Spencer as he and Microsoft seen a chance to take a swipe at Sony PlayStation and this is how they do it. And as a Xbox fan and owner of the last 2 gen consoles and one of those "Xbox 360 gamers that moved onto a PS4" and let me be clear I have never at any point been thinking or " wondering what the hell all the fuss was about". When you spend $400 plus dollars you know exactly what your getting into. People want free stuff and the game Dev said there would be some kind of DC game on PS plus and there will be so everyone should be happy. The option is and though I didn't play it, it's the Xbox Box One Cable Box $60 Forza game and 10 cars and 11 tracks sounds a lot like what my friends that did play it have said about it with the rest and best stuff kept behind X1 Forza paywall so it could be much, much worse here in PlayStationville. BTW I went next Gen with the PS4 and have not one regret over here in PlayStationville because there is no longer any fuss or wondering if Microsoft has lost their way and no longer have a clue to what their doing. It's fact they don't.

time2shine  May. 4, 2014 at 03:34

That's the first time I've ever heard ps+ to be a slap in the face over any game. Ground zeroes was 30 bucks, were u ok with that price? Think of it as a BIG demo. If you like it, buy the retail release. Evolution studios is a great developer. If the game is going to be as big as I think it is I'd gladly pay 60 bucks. It's their first next gen release. Sony wanted it at retail. They went back on their word. Think of how much better this game will be with all this extra time they have had. With close to a 1 year delay they gotta recoup money somewhere. If it's half as good as it looks I'm buying it

DaGeeZR  May. 4, 2014 at 05:18

Driveclub has fail written all over it.
It's had a troubled development and now it has a troubled release.... move along... no one is interested.

spoonard  May. 4, 2014 at 06:29

I haven't heard anyone complaining about Sony giving them a free game...

hasselhoof  May. 4, 2014 at 07:39

This game looks incredible !!! Personally, I don't expect that PS+ is brand new full retail games. It's already an insane value... but let's not lose sight of reality.

TheTruthHurtsPaupers  May. 4, 2014 at 09:05

YES, but that's $0N¥ PauperStation.

bggriffiths  May. 4, 2014 at 13:07

Ok, as the author, I feel I should weigh in again with some FACTS that remain unmentioned in the Goldfish memory sponsored comments above.

Rushy was quoted on NeoGaf in September as saying: "- You can earn the platinum trophy in the PS+ Edition, remember it's the full game minus a few cars/tracks."


As mentioned, my main issue is the obvious change in heart from Sony as to how much content would be in the PS+ Edition.

stevenjameshyde  May. 8, 2014 at 12:49

So, new details have emerged which confirm that, yes, Sony are absolutely slapping PS+ members in the face with this

"If you’re an active PlayStation Plus subscriber and have been playing the PlayStation Plus Edition, but decide you want the full DRIVECLUB experience, you can purchase a one-time upgrade for €49.99/$49.99/£42.99. This will give you access to all five locations, 55 tracks, 50 cars and all 50 tour events, as long as your PlayStation Plus subscription remains active" (my emphasis)

i.e. you pay £43 for a full game that stops working if your subscription lapses

time2shine  May. 9, 2014 at 13:06

BaZiNgA! Everyone can stop crying now that Sony has reversed what they said. Once u upgrade through the ps+ version you KEEP THE FULL GAME.

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