GAMINGbible's Guide To The Best PlayStation 4 Games
New to Sony's PlayStation 4? Where have you been? Just joking with you - there's never a bad time to get on board with Sony's mega-selling console. It's home to some of the greatest exclusives in the gaming landscape, and a fantastic place to play a wealth of high-quality third-party hits.
Here's GAMINGbible's pick of the best PlayStation 4 games you can play, right now.
God Of War
Sony Santa Monica Studio, 2018
There are a lot of stories about sad dads in games at the moment, but very few of them give said sad dad a great big homing axe and the ability to tear his enemies in two. This God of War reboot was a significant reimagining of Kratos' character: it threw out his famous chained blades for most of the game, relocated the action from the myths of ancient Greece to a Norse-infused Midgard, and seeded all of this in an open world. These renovations opened up the series to a larger audience than ever and made for a much richer game than the series had previously offered.
It may have come late in the console's life cycle, but it stands as a testament to the game's success that Kratos has become the face of this PlayStation generation.
Insomniac Games, 2018
There are a lot of open-world games on this list - it's seemingly become the default genre for AAA releases - but none feel as good to travel in as Marvel's Spider-Man. Swinging through New York as Peter Parker is a joy, he moves with such excited energy that it carries through to you as a player. It's one of the few open-world games that I've only used the fast-travel system in once. And, when I did, it felt like I'd cheated myself out of fun.
The world is dense with secrets to find and the combat is fun and physical, but it's truly Spider-Man's movement that makes this a special game.
It's hard to get a sense of just how large Persona 5 is as a game. After 30 hours of playing, the game is still opening up new areas and systems for you to explore. Its story only expands, getting richer as you meet more characters and dive deeper into the friendships you're forming with them. If there was only one RPG to recommend on PlayStation, Persona 5 would be it.
It's taken a long time for the series to get the recognition it deserves. It's had entries released on the original PlayStation and for each console since, but it was Persona 4 Golden where the JRPG series found its groove. But, seeing as it only released on the PS Vita, it didn't reach the audience it deserved. Persona 5 saw the series break out and reach so many more players, suddenly able to enjoy this ultra-stylish game.
Multiplayer games like Rocket League live or die on securing a large enough audience that whenever you're looking for a game you can find players. So, while the game isn't a PlayStation exclusive, it would be silly to deny the impact PlayStation Plus had on its success. When the game launched back in July 2015 it was offered for free to all PlayStation Plus members, and within the week developer Psyonix had rewritten the game's netcode so that its servers could handle the massive amount of players.
Four years later, people are still playing Rocket League because it's an excellently designed game, of course, but also because it reached so many people, so quickly, and built that momentum for success through PlayStation.
Resident Evil 2
While we've seen a lot of remasters this generation, there have been few honest to goodness remakes - developers returning to older games and working out how to adapt them to the tastes of modern gamers. What's fascinating about this Resident Evil 2 remake is that it may now actually be scarier because of the games that have been released between its original launch, over 20 years ago, and the modern version.
Zombie games are commonplace now - State of Decay, Days Gone and Left 4 Dead have taught us how to fight vast numbers of the undead. They make zombies fun, incidental, shambling fools. Resi 2, however, makes them individual and horrifying again. You can shoot these zombies in the head and it won't kill them, there's no insta-kill stealth attack, and a single undead getting too close can be the end of you.
Resi 2 might have first launched on the original PlayStation, but it's got its nails (and claws, and teeth) deep into the PlayStation 4, too.
Nier: Automata is a masterpiece. I could stop there, actually, but I adore it so I won't. This hack-and-slash JRPG, with its liberal helpings of bullet hell action, offers one of the richest gameplay experiences you'll find on PS4. Its combat is intense, its customisation deep, and its environments beautiful - even the barren, dead ones. To cap it all, Nier: Automata also delivers a deep, poignant story that will stay with you long after you've unlocked all five of the main endings. There's 21 additional endings too, if you have the time... anyone for fish?
Horizon Zero Dawn
Guerrilla Games, 2017
Inspired by David Attenborough's nature documentaries, Horizon Zero Dawn drops you into a world where humanity has reverted to living in tribes and left modern technologies behind (albeit because of a massive cataclysm, less so through choice), while the wider world is dominated by gigantic robotic dinosaurs. What could have been simply another open-world action game stood apart through a compelling story that teased you with the answers to how our world got this way, combat full of options to define your play style, and it remains one of the best looking games on the PS4. Naturally, since its release, players have been begging for a sequel.
Respawn Entertainment, 2016
It's a crime that Titanfall 2 was not more widely played at launch, as it is simply the best shooter ever made (don't @ me, it's a fact). In part it struggled to appeal because it was a multi-platform sequel to an Xbox exclusive, and it was stiffed again because EA released it within days of Battlefield 1 and Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare. But the people who did play it discovered a campaign full of invention, incredible setpieces, and a plethora of weapons that simply felt excellent to fire.
It's great that Apex Legends, the spiritual successor to the Titanfall games, has broken through to find an audience because it means more people are finally getting to play in this world, but also as it's driven fans to seek out Respawn's earlier work, like this.
The Last of Us Remastered
Naughty Dog, 2014
This may be the game that least deserves to be on a 'Best of PS4' list. It's not a remake like Resi 2 - it's simply a remaster of a game that launched on PS3. But, despite that, The Last of Us and its expansion, Left Behind, are the best games Naughty Dog has released (followed closely by The Lost Legacy, also on PS4) and if you've got yourself a PS4 you owe it to yourself to give them a play. The game may be linear and its gunplay outshined by other games on this list, but its story and performances are powerful.
There's a reason why it's had fans calling for a sequel for years, and why the game's second part is planned to be a swan song release for the PlayStation 4.
Demon's Souls forged FromSoftware's 'Soulsborne' style of game; and soon after, Dark Souls made it famous. But it's with Bloodborne that the studio showed how it could really innovate. The combat in this uniquely eerie RPG is so compelling, so challenging, that it feels almost like some kind of pinnacle for its genre. It allows the player to radically change their approach to combat, creating something fresh that was just as engaging as Souls games of the past, but different.
In Dark Souls you needed to wait for your moment before striking, a style of combat that leant itself to careful, defensive play. In Bloodborne you are rewarded for going on the attack, your blocks are less effective and you can regain lost health by landing hits on your enemy. It's a style that perfectly marries with your role as a blood-seeking hunter, a vampire in all but name.
But it's a disservice to the rich gothic world of Bloodborne to focus just on the combat. FromSoftware created a city laid out like a maze, that ran rife with symbolism and horrific characters. It's easily one of the best games on PlayStation - if you're up to its test.
Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice
Proving again that it is able to radically change its combat to surprise players, for Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice FromSoftware put the focus on perfectly timed parrying. It wasn't enough to dodge your enemies' attacks as in Dark Souls, or go on the offensive as in Bloodborne - you had to deconstruct your enemies' assaults, neutralising each attack and slotting a counter between their frenzied blows.
While Sekiro's world - 16th century Japan via a fantastical fever dream - may not be as rich in symbolism as Bloodborne, its unique combat and traversal mechanics make it equally special.
The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt
CD Projekt RED, 2015
A game so good it's also made our top picks for the Xbox One and Nintendo Switch, CDPR's wife-ranging, deep-reaching fantasy role-player remains near unmatched within its genre. As the witcher of the title, Geralt of Rivia, you're tasked with returning a daughter, a princess no less, to her father. But this is far, far from your standard damsel in distress story - and the many and varied side-quests along the way range from wildly funny to heart wrenching in their emotional weight. Put simply, no fan of open-world RPGs can be without The Witcher 3.
Featured Image Credit: Sony Interactive Entertainment