Sony’s PSN ‘Welcome Back’ deal boasts free PS3 games

The question on the minds of PlayStation 3 owners worldwide after their ability to shoot people in the face online was so suddenly taken away with the PlayStation Network shutdown on April 20th was, “When is it coming back?” After gamers learned that the “undergoing temporary maintenance” notice that popped up during unsuccessful log-in attempts was a misnomer and the days of downtime turned into weeks, a new query took its place: “What free stuff are we getting because of all this?”

Sony has come forth with new details about the one aspect of its “Welcome Back” program everyone wanted to hear about. No, not the boring one-year long identity theft protection services; the games it’s giving away.

Patrick Seybold, SCEA’s Senior Director of Corporate Communications and Social Media, supplied curious gamers with a rundown of the free titles and services they’ll have access to once the PSN is completely restored.

North American residents with an active PSN account will be able to choose two titles from the following five: “Dead Nation”, “inFAMOUS,” “LittleBigPlanet,” “Super Stardust HD” and “Wipeout HD + Fury.”

PSP owners will also have their choice of two games from a smaller list of four: “LittleBigPlanet,” “ModNation Racers,” “Pursuit Force” and “Killzone Liberation.”

The free games are all download-only, so without a working online storefront there’s no way to access them right now. Unfortunately, no date has been set for the return of that feature.

In addition to the free titles millions of gamers will soon gain access to, Seybold detailed other aspects of the program, including:

  • A selection of “On Us” rental movie titles will be available to PlayStation Network customers over one weekend, where Video Service is available. Those titles will be announced soon.
  • 30 days free PlayStation Plus membership for non PlayStation Plus subscribers.
  • Existing PlayStation Plus subscribers will receive an additional 60 days of free subscription.
  • To welcome users Home, PlayStation Home will be offering 100 free virtual items. Additional free content will be released soon, including the next addition to the Home Mansion personal space, and Ooblag’s Alien Casino, an exclusive game.

PlayStation 3 and PSP owners in Europe and Latin America are being offered similar bonuses via their respective official blogs, here and here.

Sony has yet to release details on its “Welcome Back” program for its sizable consumer base in Japan, as the PlayStation Network has yet to re-launch there due to governmental intervention.

Let us know which games you’ll be downloading in the comment section.