Table of Contents
With more and more games deciding to skip a PS4 release in favor of focusing on the latest generation consoles, it certainly feels like the console’s lifecycle is finally coming to a close. Plus, with PS5 stock issues finally resolved, it’s now a lot easier to get your hands on a PS5.
Known for sporting some truly excellent PS4 exclusives, as well as top notch cross-platform releases of course, there are so many games here that are worth your time. There are still some excellent upcoming PS4 games, but we’ve not included the likes of Elden Ring or Horizon Forbidden West because they are best experienced on the latest generation of hardware if you’re able to do that.
But, what’s great is that all of these are also playable on PS5, with some coming with snazzy graphical and performance upgrades for free. Plus, if you’ve missed out on any of them, there are so many of the top PS4 games available as part of the PlayStation Plus Collection too, which is an exclusive library of titles available to PS5 owners as part of their PS Plus subscription. A lot of these games will also soon be included for free as part of new PS Plus membership tiers, with the Extra and PS Plus Premium games libraries.
30. Dark Souls 3
Dark Souls, the series that spawned a hundred imitators thanks to its emphasis on difficult-but-fair gameplay, came to a close with Dark Souls 3, but what a way to go out. Featuring a variety of awe-inspiring locales (some grotesque, some majestic), the same finely-tuned combat fans had come to expect, and a new emphasis on speed and versatility inspired by FromSoftware’s own Bloodborne, Dark Souls 3 is a wonderful encapsulation of the series as a whole; not as scattered as Dark Souls 2, not as rough around the edges as the original. If you’ve been curious about the Souls games, this is where you should start.
29. Death Stranding
Death Stranding released to huge fanfare this year, and whether you enjoy Hideo Kojima’s strange stories or can find satisfaction in its ‘walking simulator on energy drinks’ gameplay, it’s a game that will define the tail-end of the PS4 generation. You play as Sam Porter Bridges, a post-apocalyptic delivery man in a world populated by survivors, Timefall rain showers – which age and ultimately destroy anything they touch – and Beached Things, or BTs – spirits of the dead unable to pass on. There’s also Mules, bandits driven mad by a lust for packages, nightmarish villains Cliff and Higgs, and BB, your Bridge Baby who helps you avoid the BTs. Kojima has filled the game with celebrities too, with Norman Reedus as Sam, Margaret Qualley as Mama, and an embarrassment of cameos from his contacts book. You may not always love it, but you’ll never have played anything like it either.
28. Final Fantasy 15
Four adrenaline-driven teens embark on the journey of a lifetime, but this ain’t no Road Trip(opens in new tab). The RPG tale of Prince Noctis and his merry band straddles fantasy and reality with almost balletic grace, throwing in titanic monsters and classic missions alongside conversations about the weather and visuals that just sing “America”. Final Fantasy 15’s story is bonkers and its final destination a genuine surprise, but it’s still a winding, delight-strewn road that Square converts are duty-bound to travel – with sufficient appeal in its blockbuster battles and eclectic quest mix to suck in Fantasy novices, too.
27. Wolfenstein 2: The New Colossus
Doubling down on all the intelligence, uncompromising emotional grit, and giddy, hilariously brutal Nazi killing that made its predecessor such a special game, Wolfenstein 2 has an even lesser tolerance for messing about. Transposing BJ Blazkowicz’s intensely personal war to an alternative ’60s America twisted into an ugly parody of itself by Nazi rule, Wolfenstein 2: The New Colossus brings the same aggressive focus on combat and character, alongside a newfound relevance and indignation. Not that it’s all seriousness and soul-searching. Wolfenstein’s kinetic, high-risk, high-reward combat is even better tuned up, with customizable dual-wielding laying on even more strategic carnage, just as hatchets and exo abilities blow up the stealth. Brainy, brawny, big, brash, and beautiful, MachineGames’ new wave of Wolfenstein remains some of the smartest and most unique FPS around.
This modern reboot is worthy of the name Doom, and is basically the FPS equivalent of a muscular body: it’s speedy, empowering, and hits incredibly hard. You awake as the classic Doomguy to begin another spree of demon genocide on a Mars colony, with a surprisingly intriguing plotline that explains how you’re able to murder so many Hellspawn. There’s a primal satisfaction to whipping out a Super Shotgun, blasting an Imp’s innards into oblivion, and then performing a lighting-fast, stunningly violent Glory Kill on the demon who caught shrapnel just behind him. The classic weapons and enemy types benefit from new additions like upgrades and double-jumping, making Doom one of the most frenetically fun shooters of all time. Also, you can grab it super cheap now.
25. Dishonored 2
The first Dishonored was so great there isn’t much room for manoeuvre here, in terms of quality: you’re again getting an options-packed adventure brimming with deftly woven narrative tales, set in a thoroughly believable world. What Dishonored 2, set 15 years later, adds is a second playable character – choose between original hero Corvo or super-powerful protege Emily. Supernatural abilities such as the latter’s grapple-like Far Reach again deliver both flair and fun, while a small-but-major improvement to melee combat is being able to turn a parry into a non-lethal knockout, making murder less of a necessity if stealth is your jam. The only notable drawback is assumed knowledge – the storyline makes little sense if you’ve not played the first game.
24. Rise of the Tomb Raider
Exactly two decades on from her PlayStation debut – hence the PS4 version of Rise of the Tomb Raider being subtitled the ’20 Year Celebration’ edition – Lara Croft delivers another must-own round of substantive combat and taxing-yet-enjoyable puzzling. The storyline, with Ms. Croft venturing through Siberia in an attempt to complete her father’s work in the lost city of Kitezh, doesn’t scream originality but packs in some genuine shocks, while the platforming and zip-lining mechanics take Lara to heights she’s never before reached – and not just figuratively. Choose to pick it up on PS4 and you also get all previous DLC, a new co-op Endurance option, and Blood Ties single-player content. And you really should choose to pick it up.
23. Fallout 4
Hitting PS4 with the atomic force of a Fat Boy, Fallout 4’s excellent gunplay and crafting systems can trigger a nasty case of RPG-itis. Don’t worry though, there’s a Stimpak for that. There’s so much to do in this post-apocalypse it’s almost terrifying and quite often you’ll set off to complete a mission and get completely side-tracked when you find something wonderful/horrific along the way. Giving the main character a proper voice adds an extra layer of polish to proceedings, and the expanded set of companions and customization options are very welcome too. It’s not without its faults (or vaults), but the scale of Bethesda’s wasteland will keep you bunkered down for weeks. Slosh in the extensive DLC additions available in the complete Game of the Year version and you’ll never want to return from the Wasteland.
22. Titanfall 2
Titanfall 2 is an absolute colossus of a game. It was one of the biggest surprises of 2016, as it delivered a smart campaign and enhanced the killer multiplayer of the original (which was Xbox-only). The story is overflowing with unique twists in a genre that long ago anchored itself in a sea of wash-rinse-repeat, offering true freedom while still retaining a sense of the familiar. Its navigation and combat feel truly three-dimensional, and its big-gun battles are an adrenaline rush even Optimus Prime would struggle to contain. A special, special game which, in execution, is anything but robotic.
21. Monster Hunter World
We knew Monster Hunter World was going to deliver something special but no one expected quite the level of depth and beauty awaiting within Capcom’s updated action RPG, or how quickly we’d add it to our list of best PS4 games. Despite being the most accessible Monster Hunter yet, you’re still going to have to wade through some intimidating tutorials to get to the good stuff but smash through that wall and be dangerously prepared to lose all of your time here. Endless weapon types, huge creatures, constantly gorgeous environments, and a terrifyingly addictive loot for spoils system means Monster Hunter will have its claws in you from the get-go. Oh, and don’t forget to aim for those weakspots. You’ll thank us later. If you’re looking for more help, check out our Monster Hunter World tips.
20. Battlefield 1
Battlefield 1 takes the epic shooter series back to World War 1, and the result is some of the grittiest, bloodiest FPS action you’ll ever see. This instalment has a great little story mode, which follows the exploits of several troops fighting on all fronts of the conflict, but it’s all about the multiplayer with Battlefield. The variety of maps and modes is staggering here – especially with all the content added by the various DLC packs (most of which are now completely free for ALL users). Whether you prefer to stick as a soldier, or choose to drive tanks or pilot aircraft, there’s a role for you in the chaotic online arena. The highlight of it all is Operations mode, which sets massive 64-player conflicts over the course of several maps, giving a real sense of back and forth battle.
19. Detroit: Become Human
Detroit: Become Home from developer Quantic Dream is a fascinating story game that centers on Detroit in the year 2038. Society has created Androids to do all their menial tasks and low-paid jobs, but Detroit: Become Human explores what happens when the Androids gain sentience and start to break their programming. One of the most beautiful games on PS4, Detroit is all about progressing the story, rather than having full control over the action, so you need to be prepared to involve yourself in a proper, engaging story before you play. Embrace Detroit’s narrative, relish the choices it forces you to make, and this could be one of the most unique, interesting games you’ll ever play on PS4. It’s impossible to see even half the game in a single playthrough too, so there’s heaps of value here.
18. Assassin’s Creed Odyssey
With about 100+ hours of stuff to do in ancient Greece, and the choice of two lead characters, there’s amazing value to be had in Assassin’s Creed Odyssey. While the pair of leads – Alexios and Kassandra – are both strong personalities, it’s the world that’s the real star here. Whether you’re dashing across it on a steed, or sailing around it in your own, fully-crewed ship, the sheer variety of things to see and do is staggering. There’s a full RPG system to tinker with, adding more depth than any previous Creed, and a revamped combat system that really highlights the nuances of the character customization options. While the formula has come a long, long way from the series’ pure stealth origins, making this the most action-heavy Assassin’s Creed to date, the heart of the franchise is still in there, with world-ending conspiracies and engaging sub-plots ever present. Sure, there’s a lot of competition for your game time in 2018, but Assassin’s Creed Odyssey is a high-watermark for Assassin’s Creed games and deserves your attention.
17. The Division 2
With The Division 2, Ubisoft absolutely nailed how to make a sequel. It took everything that was right with the original game, and made it better, but also managed to iron out all the niggles and problems people had, to make a game that’s full of stuff to do, a lengthy endgame and story missions that are utterly brilliant. And what’s more, it’s always getting better. There’s a whole year’s more content still to come, including new story missions, eight-player raids, more exotics and more. It’s a seriously fantastic looter shooter that’s going to keep on giving for years to come.
Bloodborne was PS4’s first truly great, bespokely created exclusive. In Yharnam, From Software has made one of the most unerringly atmospheric worlds on PlayStation. This is a city that drips with dread; every corner potentially hiding a grotesque beast or fascinatingly twisted piece of lore. Though there may be fewer weapons than in Dark Souls, the new Trick variants (capable of morphing between long and short-form states) are among the most empowering virtual slaughtering tools you’ll ever find. With the finest third-person melee combat in all of games, drool-worthy art design, and the most twisted monsters in the biz, this is a gorgeously gothic must-have. Bit hard, mind.
15. Persona 5
Admit it, if you’re familiar with the Persona series, you probably saw this comiiiiiiiin’(opens in new tab). And if you’re not familiar, here’s the jist: you are a high school student who (between class and socializing with friends) fights monsters, capturing or otherwise convincing them to lend their power to your quest. And what is that quest, you may ask? Why, to fight against a world run by adults who have let their hearts grow cold, of course. To do this, you enter a realm tied to each major antagonist’s twisted psyche, facing down their literal demons. So yeah. One part Pokemon, one part high school simulator, one part Psychonauts, all backed by a groovy soundtrack.
14. Resident Evil 7: Biohazard
The original survival horror is back to reclaim its throne as one of PS4’s best scarefests with this first-person reboot. Resident Evil 7 is a complete reinvention for the series, drawing in the terror close with a new camera and a palette of fear that’s very much aware of modern horror films. The game follows Ethan as he searches for his missing wife in a Louisiana swamp, a trip that soon goes very wrong when the Baker family show up. This is a much more low-key, slow-burning sort of fear than the last couple of game’s action blowouts, focusing on a more slasher movie-style pursuit through a large, crumbling house. But, despite the overhaul, things like inventory management, puzzles, weapons, and items still feel unmissably Resi. It’s a great Resident Evil game, but more importantly, a great horror game in its own right.
13. Nier: Automata
Nier: Automata may not be the most expansive, content-filled, or open-ended RPG in the world (or even on this list), but it’s definitely the best game to star an android dressed in gothic Lolita fashion while waxing philosophical about the nature of humanity, morality, and free will. Combat is fast, fluid, and satisfying, while a unique and award-winning soundtrack ranges from exciting to melancholy to mystical to inspiring. This is the type of game where you take side quests from a robot that models itself after early 20th century French philosopher Jean-Paul Sartre before flying off in your power armor to battle a giant kaiju machine with lasers and 10-foot long katanas. It’s weird, wild, and not to be missed.
12. Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End
The true successes of Uncharted 4 lie in the details. Oh, sure, you have the big action set-pieces that the series is known for, where everything hero Nathan Drake touches falls apart around him in Michael Bay levels of destruction. And the attention to detail in those moments – how wood splinters into pieces under gunfire, or how Nathan’s clothing gets caked in mud during a high-octane car chase – certainly makes it shine as a bit of impressive tech to show off to your friends. But it’s how Uncharted nails the small moments that makes it truly great. For the first time in the series, Naughty Dog has given the series’ characters some room to grow as actual people, filling in the details where you least expect them to, and these smaller moments make the big ones feel all that more impactful. As explosive as Uncharted 4 is, it’s also deeply personal – and it’s a hell of a showpiece for your PS4, to boot.
11. Ghost of Tsushima
Ghost of Tsushima takes an Assassin’s Creed-style Japan, with a Red Dead Redemption 2-sized world, and blends in an entire library’s worth of Akira Kurosawa movies to create the perfect swan song for the PS4. It manages to give you a new love of feudal Japan, and with a world so full of things to do, every moment you spend in its world is a treat. This is a worthy swan song for the PS4, and a tribute to the Japanese culture it so clearly reveres.
10. What Remains of Edith Finch
Sure, by now you’ve probably heard all the hype, and it might have even put you off slightly in that weird hipster way that hype always manages, but What Remains of Edith Finch is one of those beautiful reminders that games can make you feel everything. Exploring her family home, the titular Edith Finch gradually uncovers the stories of the Finch’s through the ages, each one opening up a new experience and story. From exploring a Halloween horror adventure in a graphic novel to simply flying a kite, every chapter is a new surprise. To give away any more is to spoil the magic of this walking sim but yes, it will break your heart and make you cry, but only in the best possible way. What Remains of Edith Finch is a beautiful experience that never feels emotionally manipulative, only ever incredibly human, and a poignant reflection on the stories that make us who we are. Even if we didn’t always know it.
9. Grand Theft Auto 5
The magic of GTA 5 and its reappearance on current-gen hardware isn’t in the improved textures, shinier cars or even the brilliantly executed new first-person mode. It’s in the way each addition and improvement combines to enthral and seduce you all over again to sink another blissful 50 hours into Los Santos without it ever feeling like a re-run. Also: an unhealthy dose of first-person cat-stomping. If tabby-kicking isn’t your thing, GTA: Online – with its mega online Heists, improved character creator and, y’know, end of the mystery of Mount Chiliad – is sure to gets it claws into you. Quite simply, it represents the definitive edition of the greatest open-world game ever made, which hold up well in 2018.
Fortnite is the most fun you can have on PS4 for free – and I do mean totally free, because you don’t even need a PS Plus subscription to play online. Fortnite’s Battle Royale mode has taken the world by storm, enchanting players with intense shootouts and towering build battles as they compete to be the last of 100 standing. Regular developer updates add new weapons, modes, and thoughtful tweaks to baseline mechanics every week, keeping the game fresh even if you already have a few dozen wins under your belt. And don’t forget about Save the World mode if you’re in the mood for something more cooperative, though you will have to pay to play that one (for now).
7. The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt
The White Wolf himself finally rides onto PS4 in The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, and brings with him one of the most diverse and challenging RPG worlds ever seen. Mesmerizing to look at and utterly engrossing to play, CD Projekt Red’s farewell to Geralt is a new high for the genre. What really impresses are the genuinely entertaining missions, and the eclectic cast of characters that bring the world to life. While combat can be challenging at first, once you get into it, there’s enough depth here to keep you interested for the duration. Not to mention it’s been further bolstered by the often-astonishing Witcher 3: Blood and Wine expansion. Essential in every way.
6. Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain
Konami might try to scrub Hideo Kojima’s name from the ultimate in tactical espionage action, but it’ll never remove his fingerprints. While retaining that distinct storytelling and sense of wonder that defines the Metal Gear series, Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain offers a level of freedom and creativity unheard of in any sandbox. It’s something to be explored for days, weeks, months – each little secret and hidden slice of gameplay just waiting to be found and to make players rethink the way they approach the game. Plus, it’s got a killer ’80s soundtrack, and some wonderfully gruff voice-acting from Kiefer Sutherland. Grand, majestic and bittersweet, this is an instant classic and one of the finest things you can shove into your PS4. It’s also been re-released as MGS5: The Definitive Experience, which contains prologue MGS5: Ground Zeroes plus all the Metal Gear Online DLC items, so that’s definitely the version to go for.
5. Marvel’s Spider-Man
Swinging straight into the top five (sorry, yes, that’s the most played-out pun ever) Spider-Man PS4 is one of the most fun, immediately joyful games you’ll ever pop into your PlayStation. It looks incredible, sure, and the game itself is massive, but what impresses most is the feel of swinging around New York as the web-slinger himself. There’s plenty to do, and the variety of non-story stuff is impressive, but the real beauty lies in the slick, free, and utterly wonderful swinging. The fact that the story has all the heart and humor of Spidey’s latest Marvel outings only enhances an already brilliant super-hero game. With a neat Photo Editor included, and a stack of DLC to get involved with, you could be playing Spider-Man for months… and still have a grin on your face when you’ve finished.
4. Red Dead Redemption 2
Red Dead Redemption 2 and its glorious open world that’s filled with things to do, and people to meet/rob/kill, is quite the masterpiece of game making. The world is so realistic you may have to pinch yourself that its not real as the morning mist rolls in, or the sun breaks through the clouds in the afternoon. And the story. Oh boy, the story. Obviously, we won’t be crowned the sheriff of spoilertown here, but it’s as gloriously epic as you’d expect from a Rockstar game – even if the opening few hours are a little slow. It’s a wonderful world to live in for a few weeks / months, because there’s so much to see and discover that you’re going to be wondering what the heck that thing is on that mountain for a while to come.
3. Horizon: Zero Dawn
As beautiful as it is deep, Horizon: Zero Dawn creates an astonishingly rich world to explore and get lost in. On top of all that post-apocalyptic prettiness, the core gameplay loop of hunting and taking down various mechanical creatures is the real draw here. The use of slower weapons like bows creates a far more tactical take on the action – you have to think about your strategies and consider your options rather than just charge in blasting. As well as learning how to get by in a world that hates you, there’s just so much to see and do as you chase side quests, meet new factions and try to unravel the compelling mystery behind corrupted machines and a lost past. Once you’re done with the main game, there is a sizeable, challenging expansion with The Frozen Wilds. Easily one of the best games of this generation.
2. God of War
God of War is – in many ways – a complete fresh for this action series. While Kratos is still very angry, the game still features moments of horrific violence, and the action continues to be smooth and brutal, the whole structure and pace has been completely revamped. Now you’re free to explore the world and unearth all its secrets as you go through, and there are so many layers to this game. Puzzles are incredibly smart, set-pieces impress, and Kratos is a much more rounded character – especially when it comes to the interactions with Atreus, his son. It also helps that the game looks staggeringly good, from scripted scenes to the way combat flows freely, all taking place in a world that feels alive and historied. There’s no better showcase game for PS4. It’s a gorgeous exclusive that reinvents one of the console’s longest-serving, most loved characters. It’s heaps of fun to play, and the game just keeps inviting you to dig deeper and deeper to discover all its goodies. And you will. You’ll be playing this for a long, long time.
1. Last of Us Part 2
The Last of Us 2 is finally here, and oh boy was it worth the wait. Ellie is back with an all-new story that will kick you in the stomach repeatedly with how much emotion it’s packing. Brutal violence is matched with one of the most engrossing game storylines of all time, full of moments that will make you question so much, and leave you with thoughts that I think will last most of us until the PS6… This is an absurdly ambitious epic that goes beyond anything we could have imagined for a sequel, and stands as one of the games we’ll be talking about for generations to come.