Last year marked a great time to be a PlayStation Plus subscriber, with a wide range of games available to play for free. Now that it’s 2019, we can expect a new line-up of titles for the month of January, so make sure to check back regularly as we’ll be updating you on all future PS Plus free games.
Portal Knights may share a lot of its DNA with the wildly-popular Minecraft, however it managed to make some improvements of its own to the block-breaking, sandbox genre. You play as your own customizable character, picking from one of three classes: Ranger, Mage, and Warrior. The game has you create your own world, which shows you the basics of crafting and combat.
From here, you can create portal stones, which allow you to travel to new worlds and gather different resources that allow you to craft better items. While the game features boss fights with interesting mechanics, most of the enemy AI doesn’t feel challenging enough and the worlds can start to feel repetitive once you’ve seen a handful. One of the best features of Portal Knights is the ability to play co-op both online and locally through split-screen.
Steep is Ubisoft’s take on the extreme winter sports genre, towing the line between a realistic simulation and an arcade experience. The game can be played in either first or third-person as you navigate a beautiful open-world, switching between different modes on the fly. These modes include: snowboarding, skiing, wingsuit flying, and paragliding.
While Steep is an online-focused game that has players sharing the same world, the size of the map and its snowy setting add a sense of isolation and peacefulness at times. Performing tricks and switching between the four different modes feels responsive and easy to control. However, Steep has received criticism is in its paid expansion which added more sports to the game that weren’t available at launch.
Zone of the Enders HD Collection
ZoE HD Collection sought to bring two classic PS2 era games into a new generation on the PS3 when it first released in 2012. This collection features both the original Zone of the Enders game as well as the follow-up sequel Zone of the Enders: The 2nd Runner. Both games have you controlling a mech suit, engaging in hack and slash sword combat while flying and shooting missiles at enemies.
Although the original ZoE has been criticized for its lackluster story and repetitive combat, The 2nd Runner is well-regarded for making improvements over the first game and offering more variety in enemy encounters.
Serving as a sequel to Harmonix’s first major music game Frequency, Amplitude has you controlling a beat blasting spaceship across a lane of six tracks. With each track representing a different instrument, players shoot at notes in time with the music, earning points and increasing their multiplier based on accuracy.
Amplitude features 26 tracks from popular artists at the time and range in genre from dance and electronica to hip-hop and alternative rock. Additional game modes allow you to remix tracks, placing notes in any order you want and create new versions of songs that can be played in both single and multiplayer modes. The game was highly praised for its highly addictive gameplay but criticized for not having a wider song-selection.
Fallen Legion: Flames of Rebellion
Platform: PS Vita
This 2D action-rpg gives a different perspective on the same story as its counterpart game, Sins of an Empire. In Flames of Rebellion, you are controlling Legatus Laendur, a general who plans on leading an army to overthrow the royal family. Combat takes place in real-time, with each of your party members’ attacks assigned to a different button.
Blocking incoming damage at the perfect moment allows you to reflect attacks back at enemies and continue your combo. There are also decisions in how you manage your army that affect the game’s story later on. While the Vita version of the game has some performance issues and bugs, the game has been praised for its art style and frenetic gameplay.
Super Mutant Alien Assault
Platform: PS Vita
SMAA is a 2D action platformer that thrives on fast-paced, chaotic gameplay. You control a security robot defeating waves of incoming aliens, acquiring new abilities over the course of the game. You’re forced to deal with invading enemies as quickly as possible as they soon evolve into mutated, more powerful versions of their original form if left unchecked for too long.
The game features three galaxies with four levels to play through, with the completion of each galaxy culminating in a tough as nails boss fight. While the main game is rather short, an endless mode is available for testing your skills and seeing how long you can last in space.