You’re heading to the store to get a PS4 right now, and need to know which games to get. (Keep your eyes on the road, please!) Or you’re home, all set up, realizing you want more stuff to play. Or maybe you’re suiting up for a battle in the console war, applying your facepaint and trying to remember which games will best help you make the argument for Sony’s console. We’re here to help.

These days, there are more good PS4 games than ever, with new contenders arriving all the time. Below, find a list of the games we recommend for Sony’s machine.

We will, of course, be updating this list regularly as more games are released for the PS4. We’ve capped the list at 12, and in the months and years to come will continue to remove old games to make way for new, better entries. Here goes...

It’s amazing that no one has pulled it off this well until now, but here we are: Until Dawn manages to be the first successful interactive horror movie. It’s equal parts tense, goofy, ridiculous, and surprising. Invite some friends over, pop some popcorn, and see if you can keep at least half the cast alive to the end.

Advertisement

A Good Match For: Horror fans, people looking for something to play with friends, the long-dormant army of rabid Hayden Panettiere fans.

Not A Good Match For: People who want a game with actual mechanics—Until Dawn is mostly a mix of conversation choices and QTEs—it’s as much a playable movie as a traditional horror video game.

Read our review.

Advertisement

Watch it in action.

Purchase From: Amazon | Wal-Mart | Best Buy | Gamestop

You’re alone on an island, surrounded by puzzles. That’s The Witness, an extremely complicated game that is really very simple. Some of the puzzles are obvious: They’re on screens right in front of you, stacked in orderly rows. Other puzzles are much less easy to find. All of them will stymie and confound you, but over time you’ll gradually dismantle them until the game’s grand design is laid out in front of you like the workings of a finely crafted watch. Some games make you level up your character to access new areas; this one makes you level up yourself. There are few more satisfying feelings in gaming than when you finally realize the solution to a puzzle in The Witness. With a click, a new door opens.

Advertisement

A Good Match For: Puzzle fiends, people who like a challenge, anyone who liked Myst and wants to see what a modern evolution would be like.

Not A Good Match For: Anyone wanting action, the easily frustrated, people who don’t like puzzles in games and generally just go look up the answers.

Read our review.

Advertisement

Watch it in action.

Study our tips for the game.

Purchase From: Available on the PlayStation Store

Strip away the baggage of Diablo III’s tumultuous early years and you’ll wind up with Diablo III: Ultimate Evil Edition, a console port that is in many ways the game’s best version. The PS4/Xbox One versions look as sharp and play as snappily as the PC version running on high settings. The controls are a natural fit for a controller. Local co-op is great fun. When it was released on PC in 2012, we never would have guessed that Diablo III would end up making a list of the best games on a console. Sometimes it’s nice to be surprised.

Advertisement

A Good Match For: Those who like watching tiny people destroy tiny monsters, co-op fans, people who hate goatmen.

Not A Good Match For: Goatmen advocates, those looking for an RPG with tactical combat, a strong story or deep, interactive conversations.

Watch it in action.

Advertisement

Read our review of the original game, and thoughts on the console version.

Study our tips for the game.

Purchase From: Amazon | Wal-Mart | Best Buy | Gamestop

Nathan Drake’s final adventure might be his best to date, reuniting the charming treasure hunter with his long-lost brother for an astoundingly beautiful romp through mountains, deserts, and buried cities. Technical wizardry and ambitious design combine to make a game that’s constantly spectacular to watch and play. Developer Naughty Dog has spiced up the series’ previously bland shooting mechanics by giving Nathan the power of stealth. It’s a nice fit.

Advertisement

A Good Match For: Thrill-seekers, retired treasure hunters, anyone who loves to go on big, spectacular adventures across the digital globe.

Not a Good Match For: People who like good villains. People who don’t like their puzzle solutions spoon-fed to them.

Read our review.

Advertisement

Watch it in action.

Purchase from: Amazon | Wal-Mart | Best Buy | Gamestop

Car soccer. I’ll say it again: Car. Soccer. It’s such a good idea it’s strange more games haven’t tried it. Fortunately, Rocket League’s creators at Psyonix have basically perfected the idea, leaving us with one of the most raucous and enjoyable competitive games in recent memory. Rocket League is also the rare competitive video game where you don’t have to be all that good to have fun. We can only hope for more car-sports games in the future. Car tennis, anyone?

Advertisement

A Good Match For: Anyone looking for a wacky, chaotic good time; people who want a game to play with friends in short but gratifying bursts.

Not A Good Match For: Anyone who truly hates competing online; people who need precise controls; car-haters.

Read our review.

Advertisement

Watch it in action.

Study our tips for the game.

Purchase From: Available from the PlayStation Store.

There’s no shortage of ambition in The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt. Geralt of Rivia’s latest adventure is massive, a world you can get lost in for hours and still have plenty to do. And while many games these days have sprawling landscapes, The Witcher 3 is utterly dense. Every nook and cranny is filled with memorable characters, clever writing, and rewards for curious players. The main story is as thrilling as it is emotionally draining, and the side quests are actually worth doing! Best of all? You don’t need to have played a Witcher game to enjoy the heck out of the third.

Advertisement

A Good Match For: Open-world fans, especially those who enjoyed Skyrim but were disappointed by the combat. In The Witcher 3, fighting is nearly as enjoyable as exploration.

Not a Good Match For: People who value their time and social life, or those who prefer their games hyper-polished without any framerate drops or other nagging technical flaws.

Read our review, and thoughts on the game’s (excellent) free DLC.

Advertisement

Watch it in action.

Study our tips for the game, and catch up on The Witcher lore.

It’s a fan-art generator. It’s pure cosplay fodder. It’s a meme machine, a water-cooler mainstay, and a cultural obsession. Overwatch is all of those things, but above all else it’s a finely tuned competitive video game that manages to encourage pitted competition and enthusiastic teamwork while ensuring everyone is having a good time.

Advertisement

A Good Match For: Team Fortress 2 fans, people who liked banging action figures together as a kid, people who’ve wanted to try a competitive first-person shooter but haven’t yet found the right fit.

Not A Good Match For: Anyone who wants to play offline, or who is hoping for a substantial single-player story campaign. Overwatch is strictly multiplayer-only.

Watch it in action.

Advertisement

Study our tips for the game.

Read our review.

Purchase From: Amazon | Wal-Mart | Best Buy | Gamestop

Grand Theft Auto V is an impressive game. Not perfect, but impressive, and it becomes even more impressive on new consoles. The open-world crime game gives players one of the richest, most beautiful worlds we’ve ever been able to play in, and the new-gen versions offer an even better way to experience it all: In first-person. The landscape is a fictionalized version of Los Angeles and the California desert, and you can go anywhere. Grab a car, plane, truck, bicycle, boat or tank. Head off in any direction. You’re bound to see extraordinary sights and stumble into some sort of good (and probably violent) time. The game looked amazing even on old hardware, and it looks even better in high-definition. Have you ever wanted to steal a plane, eject mid-flight, and parachute into downtown, all in time to go play some tennis? This is your game.

Advertisement

A Good Match For: Players who like to go into a game to break the rules. GTA is still at its best when it’s a playground for virtual misbehavior.

Not a Good Match For: Anyone who can’t stomach the game’s mockery of, well, pretty much everyone.

Read our review, and our take on the new version’s first-person mode.

Advertisement

Watch it in action.

Study our tips for the game.

Purchase From: Amazon | Wal-Mart | Best Buy | Gamestop

If we had to sum up Bloodborne in a single phrase, it would probably be “There’s blood everywhere.” The newest game from Dark Souls maestro Hidetaka Miyazaki and his team at From Software, Bloodborne represents both a careful iteration of the Souls formula and a significant departure from it. The games’ fundamental structure and signature difficulty remains, but everything has been intensified, with knife-cuts and quicksilver bullets flying faster than your eye can track. Bloodborne is a gore-soaked masterpiece.

Advertisement

A Good Match For: Fans of From’s other games like Demon’s Souls and Dark Souls, people who like tough games, H.P. Lovecraft buffs.

Not a Good Match For: Anyone who gets easily frustrated by difficult games, people looking for a more traditional RPG with a more traditional story.

Read our review.

Advertisement

Watch it in action.

Study our tips for the game.

Purchase From: Amazon | Wal-Mart | Best Buy | Gamestop

Last year, we couldn’t stop complaining about Destiny, even as we couldn’t stop playing it. Despite that, the fundamental strengths of Bungie’s online shooter kept it as a regular presence on this list. These days, things are different. With last fall’s Taken King expansion, Bungie has addressed or improved almost everything we didn’t like about Destiny while adding a ton of interesting new stuff to see and do. The Destiny of today is richer and more purely enjoyable than ever, and thus even easier to recommend.

Advertisement

A Good Match For: People who like shooting aliens, people who like shooting aliens with a couple friends.

Not A Good Match For: Anyone who really just doesn’t want to play with others, people who can’t commit to a game that doesn’t let you pause during intense battles.

Read our review of The Taken King.

Advertisement

Watch it in action.

Study our tips for playing the game post-Taken King.

Purchase From: Amazon | Wal-Mart | Best Buy | Gamestop

Naughty Dog’s violent, heartfelt, emotionally exhausting epic The Last of Us is the studio’s crowning achievement, and was easily one of the most impressive games on the PlayStation 3. Its story of survival in a post-apocalyptic world may be built on a foundation of zombie-movie clichés, but its characters are so full of heart and wrought with such subtlety that any concerns about overfamiliarity quickly fade away. Better still, in addition to its beautiful art, gorgeous soundtrack and eye-popping cutscenes, the game itself is well-made. It’s an exhilarating mixture of stealth, action and horror that plays out over sprawling levels and is unafraid to make the player feel disoriented and disempowered. The new PS4 version of the game is a marked technical improvement, with a smoother framerate and higher-res visuals. It also includes the terrific Left Behind DLC, as well as a bunch of maps for the game’s largely underrated online multiplayer.

Advertisement

A Good Match For: People who like their games intense—The Last of Us is relentless, and the intensity of its narrative is matched by its discombobulating, often panic-inducing combat.

Not a Good Match For: Anyone looking for something fun or lighthearted. The Last of Us is a ceaselessly grim, often emotionally wrenching experience.

Read our review, our review of the DLC, and our thoughts on the PS4 version.

Advertisement

Watch it in action.

Study our tips for the game.

Purchase From: Amazon | Wal-Mart | Best Buy | Gamestop

You’re an elite supersoldier behind enemy lines. Your duties include: infiltrating enemy compounds, blowing up tanks, rescuing prisoners, and using advanced balloon technology to kidnap bears for your private zoo. That’s Metal Gear Solid V, a game that manages to brilliantly mix the hard-boiled and the ridiculous. With its impressive technology, meticulous design and huge open world, The Phantom Pain is easily one of the best stealth games ever made. It’s also the goofiest. There’s nothing else like it.

Advertisement

A Good Match For: People who like stealth games, people who have wanted to try a Metal Gear game but have been turned off by the series’ reputation for impenetrable storytelling and endless cutscenes.

Not A Good Match For: Metal Gear fans hoping for a satisfying conclusion for the series. Despite being a massive game, The Phantom Pain feels narratively unfinished, and wanders through its second half before ending on an anticlimax.

Read our review.

Advertisement

Watch it in action.

Study our tips for the game.

Purchase From: Amazon | Wal-Mart | Best Buy | Gamestop


How has this list changed? Read back through our update history:

Advertisement

Update 7/27/2016: Overwatch joins the list; Assassin’s Creed Syndicate comes off.

Update 5/26/2016: Welcome, Nathan Drake. Goodbye, Batman. We’ve replaced Arkham Knight with Uncharted 4 this time around.

Update 2/11/2016: The Witness makes it in, and Fallout 4 heads out. Also, we’ve added a video version of this post up top!

Advertisement

Update 11/26/2015: Fallout 4 and Assassin’s Creed Syndicate hop onto the list, knocking off Final Fantasy XIV and Assassin’s Creed IV.

Update 9/18/2015: The list gets another update: The Binding of Isaac, Transistor, and Dragon Age: Inquisition clear out to make room for Rocket League, Until Dawn, and Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain.

Update 7/16/2015: These swaps are getting harder. After much deliberation we cut Wolfenstein: The New Order, despite our affection for the surprisingly good story-driven first-person shooter. We’re also saying goodbye to another over-achiever, Shadows of Mordor, whose best trick, the Nemesis System, isn’t enough to keep it on our ever more competitive top 12.

Advertisement

Update 04/07/2015: Bloodborne slices its way onto the list while Pixeljunk Shooter Ultimate says goodbye.

Update 11/25/2014: The fall has arrived, and with it a bunch of great games. Dragon Age: Inquisition, GTA V, PixelJunk Shooter Ultimate and The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth edge out Resogun, The LEGO Movie Videogame, Don’t Starve and TowerFall Ascension.

Update 10/21/2014: We’ve added Destiny and Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor to the list, and removed Infamous: Second Son and Need for Speed: Rivals to make room.

Advertisement

Update 8/28/2014:
Two games enter, two games leave. Outlast and Tomb Raider: Definitive Edition make way for Diablo III: Ultimate Evil Edition and The Last of Us: Remastered.

Update 6/18/2014: Change is in the air, as Metal Gear Solid V: Ground Zeroes, Fez, and Injustice: Gods Among Us clear out to make room for Wolfenstein: The New Order, Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn, and Transistor.

Update 4/14/2014: Our PS4 list has hit its 12-game ceiling, and we’ve added (and removed) more games than in any other single update so far. Rayman: Legends, LEGO Marvel Superheroes, Doki Doki Universe and Strider all clear out to make room for Infamous: Second Son, Metal Gear Solid V: Ground Zeroes, Towerfall: Ascension, The LEGO Movie Videogame, and Fez.

Advertisement

Update 3/10/2014: Two more games make it onto the list: Last year’s fine Rayman Legends and the satisfying remake of the NES classic Strider. One more and we’ll be at 12, after which we’ll have to start cutting games to make new additions.

Update 2/14/2014: Our second update brings with it two games: The graphically enhanced Tomb Raider: Definitive Edition and the pee-your-pants-scary Outlast. Only three more additions before we hit our ceiling of 12 and have to start cutting games to make room for new ones.

Update 1/27/2014: Our first addition to the PlayStation 4 Bests list is Klei’s excellent survival game Don’t Starve, which brings the total number up to seven.

Want more of the best games on each system? Check out our complete directory:

Advertisement

The Best PC GamesThe Best Xbox One GamesThe Best Wii U GamesThe Best 3DS GamesThe Best PS Vita GamesThe Best Xbox 360 GamesThe Best PS3 GamesThe Best Wii GamesThe Best iPhone GamesThe Best iPad GamesThe Best Android GamesThe Best PSP GamesThe Best Facebook GamesThe Best DS GamesThe Best Mac GamesThe Best Browser GamesThe Best PC Mods

Note: While some games on this list are download-only, all of them can be purchased on the PlayStation 4’s online store. If you buy any of these games through the retail links in this post, our parent company may get a small share of the sale through the retailers’ affiliates program.