PlayStation Plus vs. Games With Gold – Which Is Better? September 2017 Edition

September is here and now that both Microsoft and Sony have announced what games you’ll be getting for free via Games With Gold and PlayStation Plus it’s time to look at which is offering the better value for gamers. As always we’ll look at several different areas and compare them such as the price value, how well the games were received by press, and how old the games are.

Keep in mind this is just our opinion on which is better for the month as every person has different tastes and may like certain games better than others. Our previous eight months of this year have seen PlayStation Plus leading Games With Gold with a 5-2-1 right now. Can Games with Gold close the gap in September? Let’s find out.

Games With Gold Price Values

Games With Gold in September 2017 is offering 4 games as always. Two Xbox One games and two Xbox 360 games which are also playable on Xbox One. On Xbox One you’re getting Forza Motorsport 5 and Oxenfree. On Xbox 360 you’re getting Hydro Thunder Hurricane and Battlefield 3. Now in terms of value let’s take a look at what each game is worth.

Forza Motorsport 5 – $39.99

Oxenfree – $19.99

Hydro Thunder Hurricane – $14.99

Battlefield 3 – $19.99

Total Value: $95

So for the ninth month of 2017 you are getting right at $95 in value in free games with Games With Gold. Forza Motorsport 5 is the biggest contributor here with a $40 value. Overall It’s a strong list for the most part as Forza, Oxenfree and Battlefield 3 are all great games. Now I do want to mention a few things. As always that is only the value of the games digitally as some of these can be obtained cheaper at retail and digital prices are sometimes higher than what you would normally find the games for. Now let’s looks at the PlayStation Plus values.

PlayStation Plus Price Values

As usual you get six free games this month with two on PS4, two on PS3, and two on PS Vita. However this month Sony is giving a bonus game as well. Also the Europe and US lists are slightly different on the PS4 side so I will outline that below too. On the PS4 this month you get Infamous: Second Son and Child of Light in Europe and Infamous: Second Son and Strike Vector EX in the US. You also get the bonus PlayStation VR game RIGS. On PS3 both Truck Racer and Handball 2016 are free and on the Vita both We Are Doomed and Hatoful Boyfriend are free both of which are Cross-Buy with the PS4. Now let’s look at the values.

Infamous: Second Son – $19.99

Child of Light/Strike Vector EX – $14.99

RIGS: Mechanized Combat League – $29.99

Truck Racer – $9.99

Handball 2016 – $19.99

We Are Doomed – $9.99

Hatoful Boyfriend – $9.99

Total Value: $115

So PlayStation Plus in September is giving you $115 worth of free games. This is another incredible month for value for Plus members as you are getting a total of seven games with over $100 in value. The biggest contributor here is RIGS which is $30. The lowest amounts come from the Vita titles and one of the PS3 titles each coming in at $10 but that’s better than what we’ve gotten in the past few months. Regardless when you get over double the price you pay for a year of PlayStation Plus in one month it’s a good month.

So when looking at the value of both services in September PlayStation Plus beats Games with Gold again with a $115-95 comparison. Once again both are still giving you more than what you pay a year for the services so you’re getting good value regardless.

Price Value Winner: PlayStation Plus

Now we have looked at what each service is giving you in terms of money value but are the games any good? In this area we are going to look at how each game was received critically and see which lineup comes out on top. I’ll be using Metacritic to pull the scores from and for multiplatform games I will use the platform that had the most review scores. However for games that only have scores of a PC version I will not use them as PC versions can differ greatly from console versions.

Games With Gold Scores:

Forza Motorsport 5: Racing Game of the Year Edition – 79

Oxenfree – 78

Hydro Thunder Hurricane – 75

Battlefield 3 – 84

Review Average – 79

So looking at the Games with Gold lineup it actually is quite similar to last month coming in with a 79 average which is just one point lower than last month. Forza 5 has a 79 score while Oxenfree has a 78. Hydro Thunder Hurricane is the lowest of the month with a 75 which is still good while Battlefield 3 is the highest with a 84. In terms of quality games it’s another good month for Games with Gold. Now let’s look at PlayStation Plus

PlayStation Plus Scores

Infamous Second Son – 80

Child of Light/Strike Vector EX – 82/75

RIGS: Mechanized Combat League – 78

Truck Racer – None

Handball 2016 – None

We Are Doomed – 61

Hatoful Boyfriend – 72

Review Average – 75/73

PlayStation Plus in August comes in with a 75 average in Europe and a 73 in the US. Also I think for the first time this month two of the games had no review scores that I could find so Truck Racer and Handball 16 were not factored into the average. All of the PS4 games had great scores with Infamous: Second Son having an 80 and RIGS having a 78. The Europe average was two points higher because Child Of Light had an 82 score while Strike Vector EX had a 75. The Vita games once again dragged the average down though as they both scored a 61 and a 72. So far this year PlayStation Plus has had a 74, 72, 76, 63, 70 71, 73, 74, and now a 75/73 in September.

When comparing both, Games With Gold walks away with either a 4 or 6 point win in this area this month. It always is a little bit unfair in this area for PlayStation Plus though as they typically have two more games than Games with Gold does and that means the average is always factored different. The same can be said about Games With Gold in the value area though as PS+ has more games so the value has a better chance of being higher. As always it is up to the gamer to decide how much they like each game.

Review Score Winner – Games With Gold

Third Round: Game Newness

Once again we will be looking at and comparing how new are the games that each service is offering. Some gamers prefer to get newer games versus older games so we like to look at when each of these games came out and see which is better in this area.

Games With Gold Release Dates:

Forza Motorsport 5 – November 22 , 2013

Oxenfree– January 15, 2016

Hydro Thunder Hurricane – July 25, 2010

Battlefield 3 – October 25, 2011

Looking at the Games with Gold lineup you are getting Forza 5 which is almost four years old, Oxenfree which is a year and a half old, Hydro Thunder Hurricane which is seven years old and Battlefield 3 which is almost six years old. Now let’s look at the PlayStation Plus games.

Infamous Second Son – March 21, 2014

Child of Light/Strike Vector EX – April 29, 2014/August 30, 2016

RIGS: Mechanized Combat League – October 13, 2016

Truck Racer – February 14, 2014

Handball 2016 – November 30, 2015

We Are Doomed – February 9, 2016

Hatoful Boyfriend – July 21, 2015

Looking at the PlayStation Plus lineup you are getting Infamous: Second Son which is a little over three years old and RIGS which is close to a year old. Child of Light is over three years old while Strike Vector EX is just a year old. Truck Racer is three and a half years old and Handball 2016 is almost two years old. We Are Doomed is around a year and a half old and Hatoful Boyfriend just over two years old.

When comparing both lineups I think PlayStation Plus continues to give the newer games. PlayStation Plus has no games this month that were released prior to 2014 where Games with Gold has three. The two Xbox 360 games are seven and six years old. Again this area might not mean anything to you but some gamers like getting newer games for free as there is a lesser chance that they have played them. PlayStation Plus continues to be the leader in this area having won all nine months in 2017.

Game Newness Winner – PlayStation Plus

So in September 2017 PlayStation Plus comes out as the overall winner with a 2-1 win over Games with Gold in the compared areas. PlayStation Plus has better value and newer games while Games With Gold had a better review average. All of this doesn’t really mean anything though and as always it’s up to each gamer to decide which lineup is better for their individual tastes. Be sure to let us know in the comments which lineup you like better in September.

Overall Winner: PlayStation Plus

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