In November, Sony noted that an open beta for Starhawk would arrive sometime in early 2012. Today, the publisher specified its release plans for the trial period, noting on the PlayStation Blog that the beta will commence next Tuesday…at least for some.
On January 17, PlayStation Plus subscribers and those who participated in the closed beta (so long as they have not erased their save files) can enter the Starhawk beta. The beta size grows on January 31 when those who purchased Uncharted 3 get in. A Starhawk beta voucher was included with all new North American new copies of that game. Finally, the Starhawk beta will open to every PlayStation Network user on February 21.
The Starhawk closed beta included a Capture the Flag game mode on two maps: Acid Sea and Space. As for how the Starhawk open beta will differ, Sony said, "We're going to reveal more about the content updates soon enough."
Additionally, Sony made clear that the Starhawk beta is not a demo. The publisher noted the beta does not include the "vast majority" of game features in the final title and that players are likely to find various bugs.
As for the bugs gamers may find, Sony said it wants players to document their experiences in the game's beta forums available on the PlayStation Network website. Sony stressed that "with beta testing comes beta responsibility" and that the developer needs gamers to help rid Starhawk of bugs.
Sony did not say when the beta will end, only noting that it will close "when the game is good and ready." For more on Starhawk, check out GameSpot's two beta walkthrough videos with Sony senior producer Harvard Bonin, embedded below.