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PS Now finally hits back at Xbox Game Pass – but swings and misses

PS Now
(Image credit: Sony)

Sony has added two noteworthy titles to PS Now that should have made its subscription service a lot more appealing to newcomers, existing subscribers alike, and more importantly, PS5 owners. However, that's sadly not the case. 

PS Now subscribers can now download Marvel’s Avengers and Borderlands 3, as well as The Long Dark. Both Marvel’s Avengers and Borderlands 3 received free next-gen upgrades for PlayStation 5, but frustratingly these versions aren't available. PS Now still only gives subscribers access to PS4, PS3 and PS2 games, and Sony has since clarified to IGN that only the PS4 versions of Marvel's Avengers and Borderlands 3 are available.

Sony is offering a free 7-day trial from April 7 if you fancy giving PS Now a go or have simply been curious about playing either title. There’s plenty of time to get stuck into both games, too, as Marvel’s Avengers will leave PlayStation Now on Monday, July 5, while Borderlands 3 will be available to play until September 29.

Sony’s subscription service has often been eclipsed by Microsoft’s Xbox Game Pass in terms of its selection of games, value proposition and ability to secure day one content. 

Microsoft has recently added notable day one releases like Outriders and MLB: The Show 21 – a series that has always been exclusive to PlayStation – to Xbox Game Pass. It also added 20 Bethesda titles to the service, and subscribers have the promise of playing all first-party Xbox titles on day one, like Halo Infinite, Fable, Everwild and Forza Motorsport 8 to name but a few.

Xbox Game Pass also offers countless Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S optimized games (read: next-gen games to download) which PS Now does not. 

Now or never

Sony’s PS Now initially started out as a streaming service, and is currently the only way to play PS2 and PS3 games on the PS5 (something which has grown in importance recently, as Sony is shutting down the PS3, PS Vita and PSP storefronts). As the popularity of Xbox Game Pass continued to grow, Sony has since let users download games, but only those that are available on PS4 or backwards compatible on PS5. You can also download some PS2 games as part of PS Now but not PS3 titles. 

Even though both Marvel’s Avengers and Borderlands 3 aren’t new releases, neither are available on Xbox Game Pass right now – though we expect the former to appear sooner rather than later, if Microsoft’s Square Enix partnership is to be believed. However, Sony needs to continue to deliver big titles that gamers want to play, and ideally, make more of its first-party content and PS5 content available on the service if it stands any chance of competing with Game Pass.