The new batch of free PS+ games are about to drop. Here’s my quick rundown of what they are, my thoughts about them and what the trophies are like. Remember, even if you don’t have the system yet or are unsure about whether you’d like the game, always go to the PSN store online and “buy” all the free games every month. They will get added to your account and you can download them anytime in the future as long as you have an active PS+ subscription.
Maquette - PS5
Retail - $19.99
What is it - A maquette is a small model of a larger sculpture and in Maquette you manipulate small models of the world around you. Changes you make to the model are reflected in the larger world. Adding something like a small block to the model manifests as a giant cube outside. Use the model to open new paths to explore and puzzles to solve as you navigate the beautiful landscapes alongside the memories of a couple in love.
My thoughts - I really like puzzle games and I really like Annapurna games so this looks like a perfect game for me. Everything about Maquette looks amazing and the recursive model within a model style looks awesome. Unless you hate puzzle games this should be a fun game and a worthwhile palette cleanser between larger games.
Trophies - The trophy list for Maquette has been released and it does have a platinum. With so few players it's hard to judge the difficulty and time but we at least know the type of trophies it has. Most trophies seem to be obtainable through normal play and then there's a bunch of level speed runs. Depending on how forgiving the target times are this could go either way between easy and hard. There are 5 stacks so far (with only the PS5 one being offered with PS+) so let's hope that the speed runs are more on the forgiving side.
Final Fantasy VII: Remake - PS4
Retail - $59.99 Sale - $29.99
What is it - Final Fantasy VII: Remake is a modern retelling of the classic 1997 role-playing game. The remake covers the Midgar portions of the original game and mostly keeps to the same story with some additional side content and some minor changes. The biggest changes from the original game involve the combat and world traversal. Turn based combat has been completely revamped into an active time, action fighting style. Midgar is also now fully realized in 3D and you can explore all around. Since this game only covers Midgar only a handful of characters are playable though many of the supporting cast are more involved this time around.
My thoughts - The original Final Fantasy 7 was the reason I bought a Playstation and is one of my all time favorite rpgs. The remake does go a little off the rails in some of the new content but overall it's a great game for fans and newcomers alike. Unfortunately, the PS+ version being offered is for the PS4 and will not be eligible for the free PS5 upgrade. The PS5 version is rumored to be $70 so if you enjoyed the game and want the PS5 version make sure to grab the disc or digital while you can still find it cheap.
Trophies - The Final Fantasy 7: Remake platinum will require a decent mastery of combat and multiple playthroughs. Completing the game on the hardest difficulty is required but it doesn't unlock until after beating the game. Chapter select can be used for the hard playthrough, collectible cleanup and choosing different options during quests. There are also multiple optional bosses found in hard mode which are required for trophies. Finding the best gear and mastering the combat system will be necessary to defeat these bosses. The bosses can be difficult but surprisingly the most difficult trophy is probably the pullup minigame. It's an odd, rhythm based minigame and for many people it's a major pain. On average this platinum should take under 100 hours but it's highly dependent on your combat and pullup skills.
Remnant: From the Ashes - PS4
Retail - $39.99 Sale - $19.99
What is it - The earth is in ruins and an evil entity know as the Root has taken over. Grotesque monsters roam the lands and the last remaining humans are teaming up to try and destroy the Root at its source. Remnant: From the Ashes is a Souls-like game with a randomized world and a lot of guns. Unlike the traditional Souls-like combat, gunplay and ranged encounters are preferable to hacking and slashing up close. Up to 4 players can play together to tackle bosses and missions, though everyone's story progression is separate and unique.
My thoughts - I both love and hate Souls-like games. Demon's Souls was excellent and I still want to complete Bloodborne, but the constant dying and loss of progress can be extremely frustrating. Luckily, Remnant: From the Ashes does away with the usual death penalty and you don't lose anything but your story progress since the last checkpoint. Enemy spawns will be different but you at least get to remain the same level and don't lose any skills or gear. The emphasis on guns can also be a plus for those more used to shooters. I've been so close to buying this game during multiple sales and am glad that I held off for once.
Trophies - Remnant: From the Ashes is going to be a long and moderately difficult platinum that will require many full or partial playthroughs. There are multiple trophies based on events and bosses that, due to the random nature of the game, may or may not even appear during a playthrough. This means playing and re-playing the game until you find what you need. Fortunately, your weapons, traits and levels all carry over so the game should get progressively easier the more you play. Co-op can also help if you have a good team to play with but keep in mind that anything story related can only be progressed if you are the host. If you don't have friends to play with you can still get the platinum without needing to do any online play but there are some things that can be easier to do online. With a little luck you should be able to get this platinum in around 50 hours.
Farpoint - PSVR
Retail - $19.99 Sale - $7.99
What is it - A team of scientists is researching an anomaly near Jupiter and you are sent to help them out. When you get there disaster hits and a tear in space sends everything crashing down onto an alien planet. Despite the chaos your mission remains the same; locate the scientists and find your way back home. Farpoint is a full length VR shooter that was made from the ground up for the PSVR and the AIM controller. Feel the gun in your hands and experience the alien world like you are actually there. Later DLC adds more challenges, weapons and even competitive multiplayer.
My thoughts - Farpoint was Sony's big attempt to really generate interest in VR and showcase the AIM controller. It's a fun game and was an eye opener for how good VR shooting can be, but without the AIM controller it' not nearly as good. The AIM controller is a wonderful peripheral and feels so good to use but there's no way for PS+ to give that to us along with the game. If you already have an AIM controller then I highly recommend Farpoint. If you don't, they can be hard to find for a good price. There's also not a lot of games that support the AIM controller but we did get Firewall for PS+ already and it's perfect for that game as well. It all boils down to if you want to buy the additional controller or not.
Trophies - This is a very rare and difficult platinum that requires multiplayer. It's also quite long for a VR game and can take over 40 hours. The AIM controller is not required but is heavily recommended as it makes the shooting much more natural and precise. Most of the story and feat based trophies should come naturally and aren't too hard to clean up post game. The difficulty lies in the challenges and cooperative play. To get medals in the challenges you have to keep your multiplier high by getting kills back to back and avoiding damage. If you get motion sick easy then this may not be the game for you because you will need to constantly move in game and in real life. It will take a lot of practice to master the challenges. Once you get the platinum there are 2 free DLCs that add even more trophies, more challenges and more multiplayer. Being on PS+ this should help more people get the game if you are looking for other players but not having an AIM controller may prove problematic. If you are a rare trophy hunter, being on PS+ will make the platinum and 100% even more rare than it already was.
Another huge month for PS+. We get Maquette releasing for free and the return of a 4th game for PSVR as well. We keep getting new releases for free and next month is looking like Oddworld: Soulstorm will keep the streak going. I don't know how this keeps up but I'm not complaining. Destruction AllStars is still available until April so pick that up if you haven't yet. Ratchet and Clank is also free for everyone, even without PS+ with more freebies for all incoming in the future. The free games just keep coming.