As part of its evolution for its PS Plus, Sony has reportedly started asking developers to provide timed play trials for the Premium tier of the subscription service.
Sources speaking to Game Developer say that developers will be required to create time-limited play trials of their games if they cost more than $34, and that those trials must last at least two hours. Games that fall below this price will not be required to provide a playable trial, and the policy will not apply retroactively to older games or PlayStation VR titles.
The news, which was reportedly uploaded to Sony’s Developer Portal, also added that the company will be flexible with this new requirement, as developers have up to three months after their games launch on the PlayStation Store to release a time trial. Additionally, these trials must be available to PlayStation Plus Premium users for at least 12 months.
These new gameplay installments are also not meant to replace demos, as the developers would still be free to release this content and free weekend sessions of their games for all PlayStation users. Few games sell for $34 at launch and this new rule from Sony will likely impact AA games and above, and titles such as Kena: Bridge of Spirits, Evil Dead: The Game and Sniper Elite 5 are examples of the type of game scope that will be impacted.
The closest comparison to this idea of video game trials would be Steam’s system, which allows full refunds on games if they’ve been played for less than two hours or held for less than two weeks. The new PS Plus subscription service will launch in June and includes three distinct tiers: PlayStation Plus, PlayStation Plus Extra and PlayStation Plus Premium.
You can read more about each of them in our PS Plus guide, as well as GameSpot’s analysis of why the revised subscription is still a disappointment compared to Xbox Game Pass.