Sony’s PlayStation Now service is the company’s halfway house solution to backward compatibility, allowing PS4, PS Vita and some Sony set top box and mobile devices to play older games streamed off Sony’s cloud services.
The PS Now technology is based on Gaikai, a PC streaming service that Sony acquired a couple of years back, so it makes sense that the service finally arrives on PC. Even if it is long after Nvidia launched its own GameStream tech for PC games on Android devices and Xbox introduced cross play for Xbox One titles on PC.
The catch for potential PC owners is you need a $25 dongle to use Sony’s DualShock controllers for wireless play on the PC. That’s unlike the Xbox controllers that are just another Bluetooth or USB device. Then there’s cost at $19.99 per month which is way north of what many consider a reasonable subscription cost.
Users can bring the price down with a three-monthly $45 sub, but that’s still not exactly small change. Especially, considering most PlayStation owners already have a PlayStation Plus subscription at $25 for three months thanks to a recent price rise.
However, if you’re a PC gamer that wants to get into the PlayStation classics, the likes of Uncharted, God of War, The Last of Us, Assassin’s Creed, and Ratchet and Clank, plus hundreds of other games are now yours.
There’s a seven-day free trial to see if the service runs well on your PC. Since it streams the video, you don’t need a high-end graphics card, only a decent five-megabit or higher Internet connection, and a 3.5 GHz Intel Core i3 or 3.8 GHz AMD A10 or faster CPU.
Hopefully in future, PlayStation 2 and original PlayStation games will also arrive on the service, as Sony tries to stretch its position as console leader far and wide.