I love what Playstation has done this generation, they’ve delivered awesome first and second party games, continued innovating their hardware, and delivered an affordable and valid rental service via the PS Now application. However, every now and again they do something, or they fail to resolve something, which baffles my mind and makes me question how this wasn’t tested beforehand.
The issue I’m referring to today is one which I had for a whole month and I can see many others are having right now with the new lineup of PS Plus games; The inability to claim a PS Plus game if it’s already been redeemed by yourself on PS Now.
Okay, so a little backstory. On the day that Steep was made a PS Now game, I grabbed that bad boy – I wanted to try it out and see if it was any good. However, a few months later, Steep now appeared on PS Plus. So, I thought I would grab it on PS Plus instead, as that means I’d have it a lot longer as I may not renew my PS Now account until they have another yearly offer in place.
However, once I went to ‘purchase’ the title as a PS Plus game, the PlayStation Store acted as if I had already bought it, and downloading the game (as there was an option to) led to the PS Now version being downloaded (with its 14-day timer present in the ‘info’ tab for the game). So, what was going on? Was the fact I had ‘bought’ the game on PS Now limiting the ability to ‘purchase’ it on PS Plus? I was confused, so I contacted @AskPS_UK
After a few hours of them trying to remove the PS Now license on my account, they came to the conclusion that the PS Now version was blocking the PS Plus version and they had to pass it to another department – fine, I had four weeks anyway. A few weeks came and went until I got this terrible reply from a PlayStation representative on the 22nd of January:
Thanks for your email to check up on the case, apologies for the delay until we could get back in touch.
We have looked into this alongside our engineers and store team.
Once a PS Now entitlement for a game has been added to a player’s account, they will be unable to add a different entitlement for the game (such as the PS Plus entitlement) whilst the PS Now subscription is active.
We are unable to refund your PS Now entitlement for the game as this will not remove it from the account whilst the subscription is active.
I hope this helps, but if you need anything else just let me know!
Basically, an official representative from their second line told me that once you add a game via PS Now, you can no longer add an entitlement for PS Plus. Here in the UK, we have Trading Standards which all companies must abide by and PlayStation restricting my ability to grab the free PS Plus license basically goes against the terms set when I signed up to the service as it promised free games each month – so I clearly wasn’t happy with this.
However, another week went by with no replies to any of my emails or tweets to their support team until I got in touch one final time on the 29th.
I was sat in a queue waiting for the representative to pick up the live chat – as they were putting me with the guy I originally spoke to when the PS Plus games initially went live. Whilst doing this, I googled if and when Steep had a free to play weekend or a trial version go live on PSN – as they have done that a few times as well as a few Betas pre-launch… Bingo.
I found that Steep had gone free for a weekend back in March 2017. So, I logged into my Sony account here: https://account.sonyentertainmentnetwork.com/ and then clicked on ‘transaction history’. I went all the way back to March 2017 and I found… a free Steep trial!
Once I got through to the representative, I told him to remove that specific license – I had to give him the transaction ID, date and description. Within seconds of him removing that license, I was able to add Steep to my PS Plus library WHILST it’s also active with PS Now!
The annoying thing is that if I hadn’t spotted this, they would never have worked it out or allowed me to grab the game as part of the PS Plus service. From what I’ve seen, this only affects those with both PS Plus and PS Now who have had the trial at some point in the past.
Annoyingly, it’s also happening to people who did the same thing with For Honor – so, if you have PS Now and you can’t activate For Honor as a PS Plus title, look back through your transactions and get PlayStation to remove the trial license.
As a subscriber to both PS Now and PS Plus, you should never be restricted to only being allowed to have a game on either service, you’re paying for both so you can grab a game on both if it decides to double-dip the subs. If AskPlaystation says otherwise, let me know in the comments below and also google/search your account for a trial version as that’s most likely what’s blocking you!