1. Get a PS + Subscription.
This may come as an apparent reason for long time users because there are reasons for it.
- Free games monthly. For starters, at least two games per month and up to 4 if games offered on other PS3/ PS Vita are cross-platform. In the last few months, PS4 subscribers are getting four games. No more space left on your PS4 currently? No worries, just hit ‘Add to Library’ and the game will be in your account forever. You can download it back anytime. For your reference, 1150 USD worth of games were given out to every PS+ subscribers in 2016, and it only costs 59.99 USD per year.
- Play online multiplayer. If you are intending to play co-op or looking for some challenge online, this is a requirement. Some games also have trophies that require online play, so you will need it if you are on your quest to get your next Platinum.
- Backup your saves on the Cloud. Turn it on in the settings once, and you will not have to worry about losing any of your hard work anymore.
There are many additional discounts available for PS + subscribers only. You can also play games which are not in your library.
Which brings me to my next point….
2. Share Play
Wait? Are you for real? I can play games that I don’t own?
Nope, I’m not. One reason why PS4 is the superior console out there.
There are requirements though:
1) Have a friend who owns the game.
2) Both of you need to have PS +.
3) Get your friend to load up the game, hit the share button, start Share Play and select one of the options available.
Your friends can “Allow the Visitor to Play as You” which lets you play the game or “Play a Game Together” which well…. Lets the two of you play together.
The downside is you’re limited to 60 minutes of Share Play per session, you have 24 x 60 minutes sessions per day Do the math yourself, and you will get the idea.
Interesting Article: Undertale: Why this Game is a True Masterpiece
3. Download the PlayStation App on your phone.
You can get it free from the App Store or Google Play Store. After downloading the app, follow the instructions to connect it to your PS4. These are things which you can do on the app:
- Using it as a keyboard.
- Purchasing apps on the go and it will be Ready to Play when you boot it up.
- Stalking and Following up on your friends’ gaming progress.
4. Increase your storage space.
Running low on space?
Not willing to delete any games?
You can just upgrade your hard drive. Make sure it is a 9.5mm 2.5-inch drive one.
The process is easy but lengthy. Sadly, you have to re-download all your games. But it is just a one-time investment. There’re a few 2TB ones you can find right now on Amazon. Too little? 3rd party expansions are available too, allowing you to install a 3.5-inch HDD. Sony’s current firmware officially supports up to 4TB. Fear not as this is allowed by Sony, so your warranty is safe.
Related: Watch Dogs 2 Review
5. Saving battery for your controller.
If you are spending hours on your controller wirelessly, you can squeeze more juice out of it by changing a few settings.
1) Hold down the PlayStation button on your controller
2) Scroll up to “Sound/ Devices”.
3) Set the brightness to dim and the volume for the controller to the lowest.
I find these features useless and can be irritating sometimes.
*Set your controller to turn off after 10 min of idling if you prefer.
BONUS: Get a US PSN Account if you don’t have one already.
The US PSN store comes with many perks.
Free trials, preload your preordered games, more games, more apps. You name it; they got it.
For consumers outside of the US Store, these features are absent. Once both accounts recognise your PS4 as the primary one, you can access ALL games across all your accounts. Switching account is also as easy as holding down the PlayStation button.
There are more ways to improve your PS4 experience, but many are for PS+ Subscribers only. The cheapest way is to spend some time in the settings menu. Let me know if you find out more tricks behind those nasty sleeves!
Remember to Share!