Tag: PS Plus

After walking through the nine best games of the year that I haven’t played yesterday, today we’ll jump back into one of my favorite games of the year (even though it came out last year). Coming back down from the cosmos, we find ourselves entering a lawless world where violence is the name of the day and success means you’ve found a rarer, more elaborate gun in…

Game #10

Borderlands 2 is one of the most fun and action splattered first-person shooter games that has ever been made. It advances the scope of the original game by taking everything and ramping it up another few notches, including the action, the difficulty and especially the humor.

Whereas Gearbox Studios’ original title in the franchise introduced us to the world of Pandora and the lawless, wild west nature of the world, the sequel brings us into the gold-rush, with vault hunters scouring the planet and battling each other to find the biggest vaults and all of the treasures within.

One of the first innovations you will uncover in this game is the change-up of the four main character classes in the game. Whereas the first game created character classes with the basic sniper, heavy support and other typical online game classifications, Borderlands 2 takes the classes and develops them a bit. The focus seems to be on making it so character classes aren’t tied to specific types of guns as much as ways to play the game based upon their special class ability.

The characters you play aren’t the only thing that have abilities – the guns you find throughout the game also add special effects you can utilize at the right times to get you through some of the more difficult battles.

And there are plenty of difficult gunfights, early and often. I hadn’t played the game more than five minutes and I was  struggling to take down a group of baddies. We quickly learned that we couldn’t play the game the same way as the beginning of the last game. And after only two of those battles, you also learn that ammo is scarce and needs to be managed well to succeed in the game.

You may have noticed that I mentioned “we” there. That is because Borderlands 2, similar to the previous game, is best experienced in co-operative (co-op) play with one to three extra players joining you in the mayhem. Journeying with just a second player to assist makes Pandora that much more interesting and exciting. And unlike other FPS games, the experience with co-op is seamless with the single player action, not some tacked-on mode that is not as in-depth as the main game.

Ultimately, I have only played about four hours of the game so far, so there is still much more of the world of Pandora for me to discover. But, I can already tell that the game is a much more enjoyable and rewarding game than its predecessor. I am definitely looking forward to journeying through with some friends and taking out wave after wave of psychos with my exploding-bullet loaded assault rifle.

Have you played Borderlands 2? If so, let me know if your experience is similar to mine. Also, let me know what character class you enjoy the most and why.

Where to Buy

Borderlands 2 can be found pretty much anywhere for about $25 – $30. It is available on the PC, XBox 360 and PS3. Currently, for the month of December, Borderlands 2 can be downloaded for free for all PlayStation Plus members, which is well worth the subscription cost alone.

The game is also available for 75% off, including all downloadable content on Steam for the holiday sale (thanks for the heads-up Dale).

‘Tis the season to be merry! It also ’tis the season to be out and about, braving the cold and the crowds to shop endlessly and tirelessly for your loved ones. Either that, or you’re looking to take a break from thinking about others and want to purchase a gift for yourself.

If you’re anything like me, you probably have a difficult time determining what to buy for other folks or even sometimes for yourself when deciding to “Treat yo’self!”

Have no fear! Over the next twelve days, I am going to be giving you twelve game related items or ideas that you can stuff into other people’s stockings or use to spice up your holiday celebrations. This also will serve as my “Best of 2013” gaming rundown.

So, without further ado, let us begin the The 12 Games of Christmas!

Game #1

If you have anyone on your shopping list that owns a PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4 or PlayStation Vita, I am going to save you a ton of time: This is a Must Buy!

I know what you may be thinking, it seems kind of lame to buy them just a card to open up on their Christmas celebration, but this ends up being much more than just a card.

PlayStation Plus (PS Plus) is a subscription that comes in lengths of three or twelve months. With this subscription, gamers receive access to download games for free each month on the PlayStation Network Store (PSN Store) and receive increased discounts on downloadable games from PSN. These discounts range from 10% to 75% in some instances.

How Good of a Deal is this Really?

In actuality, this is an amazing deal. For the price of only $17.99 for 3 months or $49.99 for 12 months, players receive immediate access to what Sony calls the Instant Game Collection for each PlayStation System. If the code is entered today, here are the games that could be downloaded and played on PS3:

  • Borderlands 2 (Game of the Year Nominee for 2013)
  • GRID 2
  • Uncharted 3 Single Player (Game of the Year Nominee and Winner in 2012)
  • XCOM: Enemy Unknown (Game of the Year Nominee in 2012)
  • Shadow of the Colossus (PlayStation 2 Classic Remastered in HD)
  • ICO (PlayStation 2 Classic Remastered in HD)
  • Hotline Miami
  • Zen Pinball 2: Star Wars Pinball
  • ibb & obb
  • Poker Night 2
  • LittleBigPlanet Karting
  • Galaga Legions DX

That’s a lot of games! And I can attest that both Borderlands 2 and XCOM are amazing games.

Add to that every month, one to two more games will be available to download, and you can see how this can be an insane amount of value.

And that isn’t even including the six games available for Vita and two games available for PS4 at this time. And each of those is scheduled to get at least one new game a month as well moving into the future. That increases the value that much more for someone who owns multiple Sony systems.

As an addition, if the person has purchased or is looking at purchasing a PS4 in the near future, the system requires PS Plus to play games online, so that adds to the benefit of having a membership.

What if the person is already a PS Plus member? No worries – whatever subscription amount you give them, once they enter the code, it just adds that to their already existing subscription. So if they had seven months remaining and you get them a three month card, they will have ten months of gaming goodness before they will need to renew their membership.

And what happens if the PS Plus membership lapses or is not renewed? The only downfall is any game downloaded from the Instant Game Collection will cease to work without an active account, so those games will not be available until a new subscription is purchased.

Worried about not having enough space on your PS System’s hard drive to download any or all of these games as they are available? Have no fear.

All you need to do is go to the PSN Store and begin the download. What this will do is add the item to your account as a “purchase”. You can then download these items later at any time from the PSN Store’s “View Downloads” area. This means that if you are like me and only have a very small amount of space on your PS3, just “purchase” all of the games and download them when you clear up space.

Here is another interesting trick if the user only has one system but plans to buy other systems in the future and wants the free games available now to be waiting for them:

One other item to consider: if your system only has a 4GB hard drive, you will most likely not be able to play some of the larger games from the Instant Game Collection. For instance, Borderlands 2 is a 5.3GB download. The largest game I have seen has been around 13-14GB in size, as an FYI.

If you are shopping for someone with only an X-Box system, you can still never go wrong with buying them a membership card for X-Box Live Gold. This is required for all online access on Microsoft systems and has also begun to give users access to downloading some free games, though it isn’t as complete as Sony’s service.

Where to Buy

PS Plus Membership cards should be available at all major retailers that sell video games.

PS Plus codes can also be bought from Amazon.com at the following link:

http://www.amazon.com/1-Year-PlayStation-Plus-Membership-Digital/dp/B004RMK5QG/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1387035000&sr=8-1&keywords=PS+Plus

Are you already a PS Plus member? Let me know your thoughts or send me any questions in the comments below. And don’t forget to check back here tomorrow for the 2nd Game of Christmas 2013!