Tips, Tricks & Trends

Playstation Plus Makes PS4 Game in Iconic Racing Series Free for Members

This October, your favorite sports cars will be available to you for free – virtually, of course. Playstation made Need for Speed Payback one of its free games for PS Plus members for October.

Most people will never step foot inside a ridiculously fast Lamborghini. However, car enthusiasts and gamers alike can get their adrenaline fix by taking the wheel of a Lamborghini Aventador coupe in this PS4 video game.

Playstation announced the 2017’s Need for Speed Payback, along with the horror game Vampyr, will be available to download for free, beginning October 6.

What’s the catch? 

An audience watches debut footage of the PS4 video game Need for Speed Payback at E3.
Footage of Need for Speed Payback at E3 in 2017 | Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images

PS Plus is a paid service for Playstation consoles, including the PS4 and the upcoming PS5. This premium service gives members 100 GB of cloud storage and discounts on digital titles. However, the premier perk of PS Plus is the two free games available every month.

There are a couple of factors to keep in mind. These freebies are only available for a limited time. For instance, Need for Speed Payback will go back to its typical $19.99 price on November 2. Additionally, the free games you’ve downloaded will only be available to you as long as you have an active PS Plus subscription.

Which cars are available in the ‘Need for Speed Payback’?

Need for Speed Payback features a wide range of vehicles, ranging from models you’d see on the street to the cars of your dreams. 

The game gives players access to four starter cars – the Volkswagen Golf GTI, Buick GNX, Land Rover Defender 110, and Honda S2000. From there, gamers can unlock additional vehicles or purchase them with in-game money. 

Some of these unlockable models include the rugged Ford F-150 Raptor, the track-ready McLaren 570S, and the classic Nissan Skyline GT-R. Overall, there are 78 available cars to use in Need for Speed Payback.

How does ‘Need for Speed’ Payback compare to other entries in the series?

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NFS Payback is the 23rd entry in Electronic Arts’ Need for Speed series, which debuted in 1994 on the 3DO home video game console. Since 1998, the long-running title has published primary installments on an almost yearly basis, only skipping 2001, 2014, 2016, 2018, and 2020. Need for Speed Heat is the most recent game, having come out in 2019.

Review aggregator Metacritic lists 2002’s Need for Speed Hot Pursuit 2 (PS2) and 2010’s Need for Speed Hot Pursuit (PS3) as the top console games in the franchise with scores of 89/100.

Need for Speed Packback doesn’t quite live up to the legacies of previous installments, as Metacritic gives it a score of 61/100.

The game continues the open-world aspect, which debuted in the 2015 online-only Need for Speed title, but it also brings about the return of a single-player mode.

Game Over Online’s Stephen Riach said, “Need For Speed Payback isn’t perfect – but it’s a nice step up from prior entries.” However, Game Informer’s Matt Miller criticized the game story’s progression mechanics, saying, “The further into the game you go, the longer it takes to reach the next story event’s power threshold. The result is you either invest time grinding or spend real money multiple times to get up to snuff, or alternately feel consistently underpowered in every race you enter.

Is it worth the hard drive space?

It’s not recommended to drop $60 on a yearly PS Plus membership just to download Need for Speed Payback, especially since the game available for considerably less on the retail market. However, those already with a subscription should pick up this freebie as offers a new take on some adrenaline-pumping fun. 

The racing game only has a 46-GB minimum file save, so it won’t take up too much storage space on your console. Plus, you can still access it via your online library, provided you don’t cancel your PS Plus subscription, should you feel the need to delete it off your hard drive.