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Best PS5 games: the PlayStation 5 games you need to play

PS5 games on two screens
(Image credit: Future)

The PlayStation 5 is now more than a year old, which mean the best PS5 games list is starting to take shape. If you're lucky enough to have picked up a coveted PS5 in those rare in-stock moments, then you'll be happy to hear that there are a wealth of unmissable games already available on Sony's latest hardware. This is where to find them.

From incredible first-party exclusives, like Marvel's Spider-Man: Miles Morales, to third-party blockbusters, such as Assassin's Creed Valhalla, there are PlayStation 5 games to suit every taste, preference, experience level and mood – and the offering only looks to grow in the future.

However, the plethora of PS5 games available right now can make it difficult to decide which are worth your valuable money and time. So we’re here to help. Below, we've rounded up the best PlayStation 5 games available right now, and we'll continue to add to this list as more hotly-anticipated games release in the future, with the likes of Final Fantasy 16, Horizon Forbidden West and God of War: Ragnarok among the new PS5 games we expect to join our list.

You can also revisit some of the best PS4 games, too, many of which look and run better than ever before on the next-gen PS5, like God of War, which received an update that added 60fps support. 

Below, you'll find our selection of the top PS5 games that you need to play right now. While some of these games are brand new for the platform, others from the PS4 era have undergone a next-gen upgrade for release on the PlayStation 5. Read on for our list of the best PS5 games, and head over to our roundup of cheap PS5 game deals for big savings.

Best PS5 games

Assassin's Creed Valhalla

(Image credit: Ubisoft)

A Viking adventure

Reasons to buy
+Funniest game in the series+Eivor is brilliant protagonist+Every hub bursts with life
Reasons to avoid
-Huge open-world can feel sparse-Plot never gets you invested-Combat can feel messy

Whether you're sailing onto the shore or ransacking a village, Assassin’s Creed Valhalla recreates the Viking age with aplomb. If you’re a fan of Nordic folklore or simply enjoy plunging an axe into the chest of another man, Valhalla promises to deliver.

The game targets 60fps on PS5, and promises improved load times over the PS4 version. If that wasn't enough, there are drinking competitions where you try to drink your opponent under the table. Skål!

Astro's Playroom best PS5 games

(Image credit: Sony)

Astro's Playroom

Showcasing the DualSense

Reasons to buy
+Shows off the DualSense+Family-friendly fun+Comes pre-loaded
Reasons to avoid
-Quite short

Astro’s Playroom is the best pack-in game since Wii Sports, as it perfectly showcases what Sony’s new system can do. From the sumptuous, crystal clear 4K visuals, to the pleasing 3D audio, this is a gem of a platformer and it’s installed on every PS5.

It’s the way Astro’s Playroom shows off the DualSense controller, though, that really steals the show. You’ll feel sensations that you didn’t know were possible before thanks to Sony’s new haptic feedback and adaptive triggers tech, such as what it feels like to walk along different surfaces or fire a Gatling gun. It’s a surreal, magical experience, and we recommend booting up Astro’s Playroom first before you play anything else. It might be free, but it's genuinely a top PS5 exclusive.

Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War

(Image credit: Activision)

Back in black

Reasons to buy
+Visuals take full advantage of PS5 power+Addictive and immersive gunplay+Multiplayer and Zombies is fantastic
Reasons to avoid
-A cack-handed campaign

Another year, another Call of Duty. But what makes Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War worth buying? Well, for one the PS5 version takes full advantage of the DualSense controller’s adaptive controllers, recreating the recoil of each individual gun. That means when you fire off a machine gun, the triggers will feedback appropriately. Nice.

Of course, Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War wouldn’t be complete without the walking dead, so you’ll be pleased to hear zombies return. You can also play Call of Duty at 120fps for the first time on a console, which should make things even more competitive online.

Control

(Image credit: 505 Games)

Free your mind

Reasons to buy
+Stunning particle effects+Inspired art direction+Crunchy gunplay +Includes DLC plus main game
Reasons to avoid
-Starts quite slow-A few structural compromises

The dark horse of 2019, Remedy Entertainment's Control is an action-adventure with a difference. And if you thought it was good on PS4, wait till you try it on PS5.

Control sees you stepping into the shoes of Jessie Faden, the newest director of the clandestine Federal Bureau of Control (FBC) - a Government agency that researches, and ultimately aims to control paranormal activity. But Jessie’s new role has a few issues not exactly laid out in the job description, including the uprising of a paranormal force known only as the Hiss.

The affinity with which Remedy has courted multiple difficult genres both in film and in games with Control and still managed to deliver a mind-bending story evocative of True Detective and Twin Peaks is absolutely remarkable.

The Control Ultimate Edition sees you getting both the main base game and both expansions, AWE and The Foundation, packaged in too. What's more, this is the only version of the game that allows for the free PS5 upgrade, which allows you to play the game in one of two modes: Graphics or Performance. Performance mode keeps Control at a steady 60fps with lower-resolution visuals, while Graphics mode drops performance down to 30fps but massively ups the graphics, allowing for features such as ray-tracing.

Julianna trying to stab Colt in Deathloop

(Image credit: Bethesda)

Happy death day

Reasons to buy
+An exciting mystery to unpick+Shooting is genuinely fun+Multiplayer has potential
Reasons to avoid
-Repetition sets in near end-Focuses a bit too much on stealth-Enemies are mostly identical

Deathloop is an easy contender for 2021's game of the year,  offering an engaging blend of shooting and stealth in one endlessly looping day. 

Deathloop follows Colt, who wakes up on Blackreef island and finds himself stuck in a time loop. In order to break the loop, Colt must kill eight 'Visionaries' in the same day before midnight. While that may sound like a straightforward task, it's far from it - and that's where the fun begins. 

It's up to you to find out new information, weapons and abilities to help you with your murderous task, making Deathloop a mix between a detective game and a first-person shooter - with some stealth thrown in. The gunplay feels immersive and fun (particularly as it utilizes DualSense features), making for a game that may not necessarily be for everyone but certainly offers something a bit different.

Demon's Souls

(Image credit: Sony Interactive Entertainment)

Delightfully devilish

Reasons to buy
+Next-gen visuals+Super-fast load times+Atmospheric locations
Reasons to avoid
-Extreme difficulty may deter many-Clunky lock-on system-Can feel overwhelming

A true PS5 exclusive, Demon’s Souls is arguably the best-looking game on PlayStation 5. From the spectacular lighting and hulking bosses to its phenomenal texture detail, it’s a gorgeous sight to behold. Load times are also practically non-existent, too, with level transitions taking around three seconds at most. 

A remake of the 2009 PlayStation 3 game, Demon’s Souls will test your gaming chops with its punishing difficulty. However, if you have the strength to persevere, the elation that awaits is frankly unsurpassed. Just be prepared to die hundreds of times before you emerge victoriously. It will certainly test your patience, but Demon's Souls is one of the best PS5 exclusives around.

Devil May Cry 5

(Image credit: Capcom)

Dante want to live forever

Reasons to buy
+Great character variety+Beautiful visuals+Exceptional soundtrack+Embraces its absurdity
Reasons to avoid
-Story has some moments of poor pacing-New players will feel a little lost

Devil May Cry 5 is a magnificently over-the-top action game that serves as a good reminder of just how important showing off is.

Each fight is a genuine joy to get stuck into and seeing your rank climb and hearing the music swell never gets old. It does absolutely everything right for long-time fans when it comes to the story. Yet, the self-contained story is easy enough to follow for newcomers. The gameplay is the best it has ever been by a long shot too.

The PS5 Special Edition includes new playable character Vergil, the Legendary Dark Knight mode and Turbo mode, as well as ray-tracing support and a high frame-rate mode. It's definitely one of the best PlayStation 5 games out now.

Disco Elysium

(Image credit: ZA/UM)

Disco Elysium: The Final Cut

A unique RPG

Reasons to buy
+Some of the best writing in all of gaming+Wonderful art and soundtrack+A completely unique RPG
Reasons to avoid
- Not for action lovers 

Many RPG games claim to offer a spectrum of choice, but that usually boils down to doing a “good thing” or a “bad thing”. Washed-up cop simulator Disco Elysium doesn’t make things so simple. Amnesiac from drug and alcohol abuse, your cop explores all the shades of gray in between what constitutes a pure or dark morality in his quest to solve the murder of a hanged man. The writing is exemplary throughout, pulling you into Disco Elysium’s vaguely European, vaguely post-Communist city of Revachol, and the award-winning soundtrack equally evocative. 

It’s not one for action fans – you’re primarily engaging in conversation-driven detective work here – but it’s roleplaying of the highest order, an RPG quite unlike any game you’ll have ever played. Disco Elysium: Final Cut is easily one of the best games on PS5 right now.

FIFA 22

(Image credit: EA Sports)

Let's get physical

Reasons to buy
+Gameplay overhaul+Visually authentic+Refreshed Career mode
Reasons to avoid
-Superfluous new mechanics-Microtransaction overload-Cluttered menus

The latest entry in the long-running soccer sim series, FIFA 22 on PS5 breathes new life into the series’ once-familiar gameplay with the addition of HyperMotion technology while making well-intentioned strides to refresh its most dated modes, including Career mode.

Thanks to this series of genuinely welcome improvements to both visuals and gameplay, FIFA 22 feels like a decidedly different offering from its predecessor. It’s not without the same issues that have plagued the franchise for several years, and a few of its supposed enhancements still feel like superficial additions, but FIFA 22 is the first soccer simulator that truly looks and plays like a next-generation experience. 

Yuffie from Final Fantasy 7 Remake Intergrade

(Image credit: Square Enix)

An old favorite, made brand new

Reasons to buy
+Gorgeous visuals+Combat is excellent+Story additions are amazing+Encourages experimentation
Reasons to avoid
-It's pretty linear

Final Fantasy 7 Remake completely recreates the opening portion of the original game, expanding a five to eight-hour section into a full 40-hour RPG. And, every single minute is a delight, with some of the best gameplay and storytelling we've seen in a Final Fantasy game in almost 20 years.

Final Fantasy 7 Remake was already one of the best games on the PS4, lovingly crafted with some new twists for the classic game. But with Final Fantasy 7 Remake Intergrade, the classic RPG gets expanded on PS5, and takes full advantage of the Playstation 5’s next-generation hardware. It looks incredible, and the 10-hour added campaign that focuses on Yuffie is incredibly charming and fun, and at 60 fps her fast-paced fighting style feels totally natural. 

Final Fantasy 14

(Image credit: Square Enix)

Final Fantasy 14 Online

The best MMORPG available right now

Reasons to buy
+The best Final Fantasy story+Tons of jobs and classes to try+Near-limitless activities+Incredibly generous free trial
Reasons to avoid
-Subscription fee applies-Dependent on connection quality

With Final Fantasy 14 now available on PS5, there's really never been a better time to jump into this MMORPG to see what all the fuss is about. While the game's near-decade-long amount of content since its relaunch might seem overwhelming, on the flip side, you have a metric ton of content to immerse yourself in. And that includes the game's best-in-class storytelling across the base game and its three (soon to be four) substantial expansions.

Final Fantasy 14 has only gone from strength to strength since its 2013 A Realm Reborn relaunch. Its latest expansion, 2019's Shadowbringers, left a hugely positive impression on the MMO landscape with its incredibly deep and heartfelt story, as well as the developers' openness and honesty during its struggles with the Covid-19 pandemic.

With the fourth expansion, Endwalker, releasing in November 2021, there's plenty of time to jump into Final Fantasy 14 and get all caught up. This critically acclaimed MMORPG has one of the most generous free trials we've seen, including the entirety of the base game, A Realm Reborn. In addition, the free trial also includes Heavensward, FF14's first expansion, allowing for play up to level 60 with no restrictions to game time.

Ghost of Tsushima

(Image credit: Sony)

For honor

Reasons to buy
+Excellent upgrade and DLC+Incredible showcase for HDR+Now includes multiplayer
Reasons to avoid
-Can get repetitive-Yet another open-world game

Ghost of Tsushima is comfortably one of the best looking games on PS4, but on PS5, it's even better. Thanks to the PS5's extra graphical horsepower and a recent Director's Cut re-release, Ghost of Tsushima is now playable at a silky-smooth 60fps – even when running on the game's higher resolution mode. It makes a massive difference to the game's responsiveness when in combat, and the frame rate boost brings the spectacular scenery and stunning in-game cinematics to life. The Director's Cut edition for PS5 also introduces haptic feedback through the DualSense controller and 3D spatial audio.

The biggest improvement may be to the framerate then (something which owners of the PS4 version of the game can still benefit from on PS5), but the Director's Cut version is worth the extra cash for the generous DLC expansion it adds, bringing a whole new island to the game. It's about 12 or so hours of great samurai combat and beautiful exploration on top of an already gigantic game, and well worth the additional expense.

Ghost of Tsushima recently received an excellent new multiplayer mode called Legends, too, which gives the game, even more, replay value and appeal than before. Oh, and if you've purchased a 4K HDR TV and want a game that really benefits, Ghost of Tsushima shows what high dynamic range can do. 

God of War

(Image credit: Sony)

God of War

Kratos is great at raising hell, but can he raise a son?

Reasons to buy
+60fps and a checkerboard 4K resolution+Engrossing and heartfelt story+Characters have depth+Semi-open world offers plenty to explore
Reasons to avoid
-A bit slow-paced-No DLC

God of War was already one of the best PS4 games, but a PS5 update has made it better than ever before - which is hard to believe. God of War already looked pretty good on PS4, and originally was locked at 60 fps on PS5 when using performance mode - however using this mode meant that the game's resolution dropped to 1080p, taking some of the shine off its gorgeous graphics. 

However, the God of War PS5 update utilized the PS5's true power, allowing the game to run at 60fps and a checkerboard 4K resolution (2160p). It looks absolutely stunning and means it's the perfect time to try of the series' 2018 reboot if you haven't already - or is a great excuse to replay it - before the release of the sequel, God of War: Ragnarok.

A look at Hades green-glowing underworld on Nintendo Switch

Hades (Image credit: Supergiant Games)

Hades

Mythologically-infused, stylish fun

Reasons to buy
+Comic-like art style+Meaty combat+You can pet the two-headed dog
Reasons to avoid
-Requires patience to master-Can overwhelm with difficulty

A bit of a dark horse hit from the makers of Bastion and Transistor, Hades isn't just one of the best PS5 games out there, but a genuine contender to rank among the best games of all time.

Hades is rogue-like, meaning all of its mythology-inspired levels are procedurally generated, and no single area will be the same each time you enter it, keeping the map fresh and exciting, and enemies a surprising challenge.

With a killer soundtrack, hack-n-slash combat, interesting story and stellar RPG systems, Hades is extremely fun to play and will stave off any pangs of boredom.

Suffice it to say, if you have an interest in Greek mythology, you'll be pleasantly surprised by how much research Supergiant has put into this one, offering a truly exceptional experience for those wanting to see the soap-opera-like drama of the ancient gods play out.

Sometimes there's far too much going on while you're playing which does make it all a bit hectic, but if you can get past the chaos you'll have hours of fun playing this game, as it's easily one of the best rogue-likes around.

  • Hades is the most addicted I’ve ever been to a video game

Hitman 3

(Image credit: IO Interactive)

Perfectly executed

Reasons to buy
+Great living and breathing locations+Looks fantastic on next-gen+Tweaks to the expected formula
Reasons to avoid
-Cutscenes don’t look the best-Could be more replayable-New camera tool doesn’t add much

Hitman 3 is the dramatic conclusion to the acclaimed stealth series - and what a conclusion it is. While the third entry in the Hitman series doesn't stray too far from what made the 2016 reboot (and its sequel) great, it adds some brilliant little twists to the formula to keep you on your toes.

While the way you assassinate your targets hasn't changed much, the new locations - such as Dubai, China and Argentina - are some of the most memorable of the series. Add to that more experimental objectives and a gripping story, and Hitman 3 rightly deserves its place on our best PS5 games list.

It Takes Two

(Image credit: EA / Hazelight Studios)

It Takes Two

Team work makes the dream work

Reasons to buy
+Family friendly+Takes elements from lots of genres+Fun for gamers and non-gamers+Friend's Pass available
Reasons to avoid
-Can only be played co-op

If you're looking for one of the best co-op games on PS5 then look no further. It Takes Two is a fun, tongue-in-cheek adventure that will provide hours of entertainment for both gamers and non-gamers alike. Taking elements from a variety of different games and intertwining them with a rom-com-like narrative, It Takes Two has something for everyone - even kids. 

It's worth noting this game can only be played in co-op (either online or couch), but comes with a Friend's Pass allowing you to invite an online friend to join your adventure, even if they don't own the full game. 

Marvel's Spider-Man: Miles Morales PS5

(Image credit: Sony)

Miles gets a superhero’s welcome

Reasons to buy
+Incredibly detailed visuals+Blazing-fast load times+Ray tracing support
Reasons to avoid
-Main story doesn’t last long-Challenges can be repetitive-DualSense implementation is fairly limited

A sequel that’s more akin to Uncharted: The Lost Legacy in terms of scale, Marvel’s Spider-Man Miles Morales puts you in the Adidas-branded sneakers of the charismatic and rookie web-slinger, Miles. With Peter Parker off on holiday, it’s up to Miles to take over the stewardship of New York, and predictably, his first week on the job doesn’t go smoothly. 

Marvel’s Spider-Man Miles Morales delivers a blockbuster, cinematic experience that easily rivals Hollywood’s best. The game’s fidelity mode shows off the power of ray-tracing (realistic reflections and lighting) and there’s a silky-smooth 60fps performance mode, too. If you loved the first Spider-Man game, or simply want to experience yet another excellent PlayStation exclusive, you don’t need to look much further than Miles’ debut outing.

Ratchet and Clank: Rift Apart

(Image credit: Insomniac Games)

Brilliant, fast-paced fun

Reasons to buy
+New characters have depth+Haptic feedback adds immersion+Traversal is fast-paced+Charming and humorous
Reasons to avoid
-PS5 Audio utilization disappointing-A fair few bugs-A lack of optional missions

Ratchet and Clank: Rift Apart is brilliant, fast-paced fun that doesn’t take itself too seriously. Rift Apart manages to retain the charm and humor that we loved about the original titles, while balancing this with new characters that offer endearing vulnerability. In addition, the latest Ratchet and Clank makes great use of the DualSense controller’s haptic feedback and audio. 

Ratchet and Clank: Rift Apart is great family fun for both fans of the series and newbies, making it easily one of the best PS5 games right now.

Resident Evil Village

(Image credit: Capcom)

Lycan it a lot

Reasons to buy
+Well-paced story (mostly)+Brilliant use of audio+Inventory management improved+Memorable characters
Reasons to avoid
-Boss fights can feel anticlimactic-Less focus on scares-Story spoon-fed at the end

Resident Evil Village is a worthy successor to the critically acclaimed Resident Evil 7 - but while that game managed to revive the survival horror roots of the series, Village builds on it with an experience that draws from all the highlights of the series. What results is a Resi game that promises to thrill veteran fans of Resident Evil and delight newcomers.

Resident Evil Village follows on from the events of Resident Evil 7 - taking place a few years later. Village sees protagonist Ethan exploring an Eastern European village in hopes of finding his kidnapped daughter - but the village residents are.... less than welcoming.

Resident Evil Village is more action-focused than its predecessor - and it's visibly closer to the classic Resident Evil 4 in its moment-to-moment gameplay - but it blends this with the survival horror elements that we love about older entries. Factor in a slew of quality-of-life improvements, a roster of memorable characters, a well-paced and gripping story and superb utilization of in-game audio, and Resident Evil Village is one of the best PS5 games around.

Returnal

(Image credit: Future)

Sony's first PS5 exclusive delivers the goods

Reasons to buy
+Stunning visuals+Excellent DualSense support+Brilliant headphones experience
Reasons to avoid
-Punishingly difficult-Runs can feel needlessly long-Repetitive combat

As one of Sony's biggest PS5 exclusives, Returnal is bound to draw in many gamers who maybe haven't played a roguelike before, and therefore may find its punishing difficulty, ever-changing levels and permadeath mechanic to be a real shock to the system. That said, after a few cycles within Returnal's harsh alien world, they may also find it difficult to stop playing.

Much like the Finnish developer's previous titles, which include the likes of Outlast and Resogun, Returnal brings Housemarque's signature 'bullet hell' approach to the roguelike genre that has been taking the indie gaming world by storm for the last few years. That means that you'll never know what to expect when you enter a room, only that you will have to start over again from the beginning when you die. 

Thankfully, Returnal does offer a number of permanent upgrades that you can bring with you into each new cycle once unlocked, making progression slightly easier in the process. Along the way, you'll also start to piece together Returnal's surprisingly immersive story, which is just enough motivation to keep you returning for "just one more run..."

Sackboy: A Big Adventure

(Image credit: Sony Interactive Entertainment)

Stuffed full of magic

Reasons to buy
+Fantastic level design+Four-player co-op+Challenging gameplay
Reasons to avoid
-Somewhat predictable boss fights-End of level fanfare takes too long-No online multiplayer at launch

Sackboy: A Big Adventure may seem like the weakest PlayStation exclusive of the three, but it’s probably the most important. This is a game that’s perfect for families thanks to its kid-friendly nature and four-player local co-op (online arrives at a later date), and manages to go toe-to-toe with the impressive, critically-acclaimed Super Mario 3D World.

It helps that Sackboy: A Big Adventure is a truly wonderful platformer, then, one that manages to avoid the common pitfalls that many developers fall into when designing games for younger audiences. Don’t sleep on this one as it's one of the best PS5 exclusives you can play with friends and family.

The Nioh Collection

(Image credit: KOEI TECMO GAMES)

The Nioh Collection

Celebrating a classic

Reasons to buy
+Includes remastered editions of Nioh and Nioh 2+4K and up to 120fps+All DLC included
Reasons to avoid
-Gameplay mechanics aren't for everyone

The Nioh Collection is the ultimate Nioh experience for fans and new players alike. Packing in the remastered versions of both Nioh and Nioh 2, plus all the DLC to date, this definitive collection is the best way to experience the action RPG series.

What's more, thanks to enhancements for PS5, The Nioh Collection features 4K support at up to 120fps. Pair that with super-fast load times on the PS5 and it easily makes for a stunning, brutal and fluid gameplay experience. 

Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 1 + 2

(Image credit: Activision)

A nostalgia-filled return to form

Reasons to buy
+Great soundtrack+Countless challenges to beat+Gorgeous graphics+Native 4k @60FPS
Reasons to avoid
-Sparse create-a-character options-Some levels haven't aged well-Online multiplayer is limited

A sublime remake that will feel like a grand homecoming for fans and an exciting revelation for newcomers, Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 1 + 2 is a gnarly remake of two classic games and one of the best games to play on PS5.

While Pro Skater already looked fantastic on last-gen consoles, the PS5 makes Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 1 + 2 look stunning and run as smooth as butter, with support for 120fps @1080p or Native 4k @60fps. In addition, Pro Skater also utilizes DualSense haptic feedback as well as spatialized audio, making that amazing soundtrack sound even better. 

FAQs 

DualSense PS5 controller

(Image credit: Shutterstock/SolidMaks)

What is the best PS5 game right now?

This will really depend on what your taste is. While every game on this list is a top PS5 title, you often can't go wrong with PS5 exclusives such as the challenging Returnal, action-adventure Ratchet and Clank: Rift Apart and time-looping shooter Deathloop.

What is the best PS5 game for kids?

There are a few games on our list that are child-friendly, but our top picks are charming platformer Sackboy: A Big Adventure, the adorable Astro's Playroom and Ratchet and Clank: Rift Apart.

Which PS4 games are better on PS5?

A number of PS4 games have been enhanced for PS5, with some benefiting from improved frame rates and visuals that make them both look and play better than before. Just some PS4 games which have had PS5 improvements include God of War, Ghost of Tsushima, Horizon Forbidden West and The Last of Us 2. But, don't forget, most PS4 games will benefit on PS5 anyways thanks to significantly improved loading times.

Vic Hood

Vic is TechRadar's Gaming Editor. An award-winning games journalist, Vic brings experience from IGN, Eurogamer and more to the TechRadar table. You may have even heard her on the radio or speaking on a panel. Not only is Vic passionate about games, but she's also an avid mental health advocate who has appeared on both panels and podcasts to discuss mental health awareness. Make sure to follow her on Twitter for more.