PlayStation Network (PSN) members are being offered free games after users were locked out of the service following a hack, which also put their data at risk.

Users who were account holders on 20 April, when the hack took place (see PlayStation hack news story), will be eligible for the 'welcome back' programme, which also includes free membership to premium services.

Some PSN services, including online game-play on PS3 and PSP, were restored on Sunday evening with the remaining services expected to be back online gradually throughout May.

What are the Sony freebies?

This is what Sony is offering to placate users:

  • PlayStation 3 (PS3) users will get two free games from the following collection: LittleBigPlanet, Infamous, Wipeout HD/Fury, Ratchet and Clank: Quest for Booty, Dead Nation. The best prices we found for these games range from 9.85 to 19.99.
  • Users of the smaller PlayStation Portable (PSP) devices will get two free games from the following: LittleBigPlanet PSP, ModNation PSP, Pursuit Force, Killzone Liberation. The best prices we found for these games range from 8.99 to 12.99.
  • Customers with a PSN account for both PS3 and PSP can get two games for each console.
  • Gamers will get 30 days' free PlayStation Plus membership if not already a member. This is a premium service that gives access to games and demos others don't get.
  • Existing PlayStation Plus members get 60 days' free membership.
  • Existing Music Unlimited subscribers will also get 30 days' free subscription. This is a music streaming service.

How to get these freebies

Once the PlayStation store is live all of those who were PSN account holders on 20 April will have 30 days to redeem their games or free membership but the clock is not ticking yet.

Information on how to do this will be sent to customers by email, as well as updated on the official PlayStation blog (see link, above right) later this month.

The PlayStation store will be the last service restored and Sony hopes it will be up towards the end of this month.