While there are thousands of games that can be played on PS5 through PS5 backward compatibility, a lot less are specifically designed for Sony's newest powerhouse. We've rounded up the very best games you can play on PS5 today and split them up by genre so that you can easily browse what interests you most. From RPGs to multiplayer games and free-to-play, we've got you covered.
For the purposes of this list, we've tried to stick with newly released games with PS5 versions or games that have been updated to take advantage of its extra power. Rest assured, it's not an exhaustive list of everything available on the system right now. For that, you'll want to check out the best PS4 games. As more games are released in the coming months, we'll branch out and add more categories.
Best PS5 RPGs
Role-playing games have stood the test of time and are continually some of the most popular on the market. There aren't a ton of RPGs designed for PS5 at the moment, but the few that are are well worth your time. And if that isn't enough for you, the PS4 has a huge back catalog of RPGs to peruse.
Originally developed by FromSoftware, Demon's Souls was the 2009 precursor to Dark Souls, which would go on to jumpstart an entire genre of Souls-likes. Set in the Kingdom of Boletaria, players embark on a journey to defeat King Allant, who has awakened an ancient evil and its demon army. As you can expect, the combat in Demon's Souls is extremely challenging, and there are no difficulty settings to turn it down. You "git gud" or you die trying. Over and over and over.
Bluepoint completely remade Demon's Souls as a PS5 launch title, and the attention to detail is immediately apparent. While staying true to the original vision, its graphics are overhauled to meet today's standards. With some quality-of-life fixes and small changes here and there, Bluepoint ensured it left any old jank in the past. What remains is an excellent remake, possibly one of the greatest ever done. It's more action-RPG than a straight-up RPG, but it still fits the bill.
Assassin's Creed Valhalla
Starting out as an action/adventure stealth series, Assassin's Creed has morphed into a full-blown RPG with recent entries like Origins and Odyssey. Its latest mainline game, Assassin's Creed Valhalla, doubles down even further and lets players live out their Viking fantasies in England during the Dark Ages. With constant strife ravaging Norway, our hero sets sail for the shores of England, but its current king and citizens are none too kind to these foreigners.
Players have the choice between a male or female Eivor, both of which can be customized with different tattoos and hairstyles. Like its predecessors, Valhalla allows players to equip a bevy of weapons, including the option to dual-wield two shields. There is also a large, branching skill tree and over a dozen abilities to unlock. No two Eivor's will be the same, so personalize them to your playstyle and start raiding.
The Nioh Collection
The Nioh Collection contains remastered editions of both the first and second game in the action-RPG series. Nioh follows an Irish samurai in Japan during the 1600s (though a fictionalized fantasy version of it), with gameplay similar to that of Dark Souls. Nioh 2 is a prequel that takes place during the late 1500s starring a half-yokai, a Japanese demon, working to take down the warlord Toyotomi Hideyoshi.
Both games support 4K resolution at an incredible 120FPS, some of the very few titles that support such high frame rates. Each also comes with all major DLC, a total of six expansions. Like other games being updated for PS5, they also support DualSense features like haptic feedback and adaptive triggers.
Final Fantasy 7 Remake Intergrade
When you think of JRPGs, one of the most iconic and acclaimed series that comes to mind is Final Fantasy. Square Enix decided to deliver on fans wishes and remake Final Fantasy 7, which many consider to be the best entry in the franchise. Its remake was outstanding, and it was only made better on PS5 when Final Fantasy 7 Remake Intergrade released. Not only did it include PS5 optimizations, but it also added some fun DLC starring Yuffie.
Any RPG fan owes it to themselves to play Final Fantasy 7 Remake Intergrade. It retains everything that made the original so great while modernizing it for today's audiences with new gameplay mechanics. That's a hard feat to achieve when the balance is so delicate, and Square Enix made it look easy.
Final Fantasy 14 Online
Final Fantasy 14 Online had a rough development process and launch, but it's finally become a game that's worth playing in 2021. In recent months, it's even taken on World of Warcraft in popularity, which is a testament to the support the game's received over the years. Its upcoming Endwalker expansion is slated to release in November 2021, so you'll want to get in on the action beforehand and be prepared.
Despite being an initial purchase of $60, players will still need to pay a monthly subscription fee to continue to access Final Fantasy 14 Online after the first 30 days. Memberships start at $12.99 per month and go up to $14.99 per month, with access to eight characters per server. The good news is that you don't need a PlayStation Plus membership to play it on PS4 or PS5.
Best PS5 Action/Adventure Games
Action/adventure can mean a lot of things to different people, especially when the genre frequently borrows from others. It's easy to define Assassin's Creed Valhalla as an action RPG, for instance. Whatever the case, action/adventure titles make up a bulk of the AAA market today outside of shooters, and there are plenty of great ones on PS5.
Ghost of Tsushima Director's Cut
Ghost of Tsushima was already one of the most acclaimed games on PS4, and it became even better with the Director's Cut on PS5. Adding a new location with Iki Island and a host of DualSense features, Ghost of Tsushima Director's Cut gives those who've already played on PlayStation 4 some great reasons to hop back in. Tsushima is just as beautiful as ever and the combat is just as excellent as you'd remember.
When Mongols are on the shores of Tsushima island, samurai Jin Sakai must do anything he can to save his people, even if it means going against everything he's been taught his entire life. Ghost of Tsushima is often described as Assassin's Creed in Japan, so fans of the aforementioned series will feel right at home here.
Ratchet and Clank: Rift Apart
Ratchet and Clank: Rift Apart is easily one of the best entries in the franchise to date. The long-running series from Insomniac features a Lombax named Ratchet fighting evil alongside his robot buddy Clank. Rift Apart introduces some new characters into the fold like Rivet, Ratchet's dimensional counterpart who's a freedom fighter against the evil Emperor Nefarious.
When Clank gifts Ratchet a Dimensionator in the hopes that he'll find other Lombaxes, things go awry and they end up in another dimension. In our review of the game, we said, "Ratchet and Clank: Rift Apart is this year's summer blockbuster on PS5. Taking players through diverse and gorgeous worlds with excellent combat and platforming, Rift Apart is a ton of fun to play."
Spider-Man: Miles Morales
Insomniac's Spider-Man released a few years ago, and you'll be hard-pressed to find a better superhero game. It sits right up top alongside the Batman Arkham series as many people's favorite. Since Insomniac knocked it out of the park, it was only inevitable that it'd make a follow-up. Spider-Man: Miles Morales isn't a full sequel, but it is a standalone adventure set in the same universe after the events of the first game.
With Peter Parker on vacation, Miles Morales takes up the mantle of New York's friendly neighborhood Spider-Man. When Harlem comes under attack by an energy corporation hellbent on ruining the city for its own gain, Miles suits up to take them down with the help of a few friends. The city is fully explorable and features brand new suits, skills, and activities to complete.
Control: Ultimate Edition
The weird horror game from Remedy, which ties into the Alan Wake franchise, has its own quirks. Control is set in the Oldest House, a brutalist building that houses a secret government agency, the Federal Bureau of Control (hence the name). It's here that the paranormal becomes reality as you fight your way through otherworldly enemies in the hopes of finding your brother.
Control on PS5 features two graphics modes, one that boosts performance to 60FPS and one that turns on ray tracing effects at 30FPS. No matter which you choose you're looking at a 1440p resolution that outputs at 4K. What's cooler here is that you can change these modes whenever you want in the display settings without having to quit out of the game and load from the main menu like with most other titles. As a cherry on top, the loading in Control on PS5 takes less than 10 seconds usually, far faster than what it was on PS4.
Immortals Fenyx Rising
It's probably getting old to hear Immortals Fenyx Rising called a Breath of the Wild clone, but the comparisons are apt. It plays like The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild meets Assassin's Creed Odyssey, taking the gameplay and art style from the former game and utilizing more of the Greek mythology featured in the latter. Mix in a ton of humor and it seemed destined for success.
After Typhon escapes from Tartarus and vows to enact revenge on the gods, a young Greek hero washes up on the Golden Isle to find it in disarray. In order to defeat Typhon and his minions, you'll need to find the gods and help them restore their full powers. Immortals Fenyx Rising features several locations based on the Greek gods and has a slew of mythology enemies to take on. Not only can you flex your combat skills, but there are plenty of puzzles to solve as well.
No Man's Sky
No Man's Sky was bad when it launched... and then it wasn't. With nearly unending support and a drive to make the game live up to its full potential, Hello Games worked night and day to deliver major content updates and quality-of-life fixes that drastically improved the game. What remains is an excellent game that was recently enhanced for PS5 with more populated, denser worlds, improved resolution and framerates, and adaptive trigger support.
Boasting a procedurally-generated universe with over 18 quintillion planets (not a typo), No Man's Sky allows players to explore the vast wonders of the universe. From hostile planets with boiling temperatures and acid rain to more temperate, tropical climates, there's no shortage of things to discover. Collect resources to build bases and acquire better ships as you fly across the skies.
Watch Dogs: Legion
The Watch Dogs series went from Chicago to San Francisco before ending up in London for Watch Dogs: Legion, which sees the developers tackle a post-Brexit dystopia ruled by a militaristic surveillance state (so, you know, not far off from real life). To mix up the formula, Ubisoft made it so that anyone can be a playable character, from beekeepers to elderly grandmas. There is no such thing as an NPC here. Each type of character has unique traits and skills that they bring to the table, helping DedSec root out corruption across the city.
Like previous entries in the series, it's all open-world and features a host of activities to do and gear to unlock. To accommodate more players, it offers plenty of avenues to complete missions based on your playstyle. Whether you're a brawler, want to go in stealthier, or run in spraying paint on everything, you can do it.
Best PS5 Shooters
Whether in first-person or third-person, there's something special about a good shooter. You can slay demons from hell, obliterate an army of aliens, mow down terrorists — there's no shortage of what you can do and what monsters you can kill. No matter the case, you'll end up being the hero in any of these fantastic shooters on PS5.
Borderlands 3 is the latest and greatest from Gearbox Software, taking the role-playing shooter across the galaxy to new planets and locales. Somehow topping itself from what it pulled off in Borderlands 2, Gearbox created over a billion procedurally-generated guns with unique parts and features depending on their brand. Melt faces with exploding lasers, freeze your enemies to death, or just use a gun that plays metal music or screams when you use it because why not?
Supporting up to four-player co-op and coming with dozens of hours of content — not even accounting for its amazing DLC — it almost feels like there's never-ending amounts of fun to be had. When you combine this with the brand's signature sense of humor and art style, it becomes a fantastic game to play all around.
Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War
Say what you want about the Call of Duty series, but Treyarch knows how to make a good shooter. The gunplay is second to none, and Black Ops Cold War keeps it a bit more grounded than other recent entries in the series by setting it during the 1980s. In addition to a single-player campaign, it also new and returning multiplayer modes, along with the popular Zombies mode.
Recruited by a top agent from the CIA, your character goes on a mission to stop the Russian operative Perseus, a person based on a real-life spy whose existence is argued to this day. In any case, he's real in Black Ops Cold War, and President Ronald Reagan approves the mission that sends you around the world to neutralize this threat. Your loyalties will be put to the test in this campaign.
Rainbow Six Siege
Rainbow Six Siege is a multiplayer game with dozens of playable maps and modes, along with seasonal events, that emphasize teamwork and environmental destruction. Like Black Ops Cold War, the gunplay here is exceptional. Regardless of the state of the game when it launched, it's incredibly fun now and boasts tens of millions of players, keeping the fanbase active and engaged.
Should you want some single-player gameplay, Rainbow Six Siege offers 10 solo missions so you can familiarize yourself with the mechanics before jumping into multiplayer and getting your ass handed to you. This is an example of a games-as-a-service done right and should be on anyone's list looking for a shooter to play.
Slay the forces of Hell and rip and tear your way through hundreds — possibly thousands — of demons in DOOM Eternal, a follow-up to the soft reboot of the series that id Software released a few years ago. With Earth being overrun by demonic forces, it's up to you as the Doom Slayer to take down the Hell Priests and Khan Maykr, an evil being hell-bent on destroying all of humanity.
The Doom Slayer is up against the usual arsenal of baddies, some iconic faces returning alongside some new ones. DOOM Eternal puts a large focus on fast and frenetic gameplay, encouraging players to push forward and eliminate enemies through brute force while also managing their resources. The guns at your disposal certainly help, like the combat shotgun and BFG 9000. That not enough for you? There are melee weapons like chainsaws and a retractable Doomblade, too.
Destiny 2: Beyond Light
Destiny 2 may have a competitive multiplayer mode, but its bread and butter is its PvE gameplay and co-op. Its fifth major expansion, Beyond Light, further enhanced this experience, tasking players to travel to Europa to stop an imminent threat against the Traveler. Bungie has cycled out some guns and locations in Beyond Light to keep the install size down, but it plans on rotating them in and out of its content vault.
The PS5 upgrade includes true 4K at 60FPS gameplay, with its Crucible multiplayer mode set to a whopping 120FPS. You may have to play it for yourself to see how beautiful it looks and how well it performs, but it's sublime. This next-gen update also added an FOV slider, and at some point, Bungie will be adding cross-play in 2021 so that Xbox, PlayStation, and PC players can finally all play together.
Best PS5 Multiplayer Games
Gaming is a more social activity than ever, and nothing makes that as evident as the rise of multiplayer. Whether you're sitting next to a friend on the couch or playing with someone from another country, multiplayer games bring people closer together (if you ignore some toxic trolls on voice chat, but I digress). Multiplayer can be a force for good, connecting people and allowing them to have fun when they can't go outside. These are just a handful of the best multiplayer games on PS5.
Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War
Not only is Black Ops Cold War an impeccable shooter, but it deserves a spot as one of the PS5's best multiplayer games, too. For as good as Treyarch can make a campaign, its multiplayer will always be the heart of Call of Duty. Black Ops Cold War has classic multiplayer modes like Team Deathmatch and Domination, among others, that support 6v6 and 12v12 gameplay. A new mode can also support up to 40 players. In Fireteam, the aforementioned 40-player mode, four teams of ten either compete against one another or work together to complete certain objectives, depending on the mission.
Because it's a Call of Duty game, you know the player base is going to be lively. You won't have to worry about having trouble finding a match or anything like that. Call of Duty games are here to stay, and Treyarch will be supporting it for a long time to come until its next Call of Duty arises.
Rainbow Six Siege
Rainbow Six Siege lives and dies by its multiplayer, so it's a good thing Ubisoft continually supports it with new seasons of content. There are a handful of modes spanning PvE and PvP scenarios, with one of the most popular being Terrorist Hunt and the competitive Hostage, Bomb, and Secure Area missions. There are nearly 60 playable characters, called Operators, in the game that bring their own attributes and skills to the battlefield.
Given its success, Ubisoft isn't slowing down with Rainbow Six Siege anytime soon. The company announced a player count topping 60 million last year, and it only seems to grow. Its yearly passes usually include new Operators, VIP perks, skins, gear, and more.
Almost nothing can stop the domination of Fortnite. Continually one of the most-watched and most-streamed games on Twitch, there's no stopping what Epic can do with its free-to-play battle royale. The company keeps supporting it with new battle passes and seasons of content, ensuring millions of players hop on every day.
The battle royale throws 100 players onto an island to fight and be the last person standing. It has an instantly recognizable art style and keeps teaming up with companies like Disney and Warner Bros. to introduce new cross-over events, characters, and more. Filmmaker Christopher Nolan even streamed one of his movies in the game, and Travis Scott performed a concert. It's a cultural phenomenon that has brought countless people together.
Fall Guys surprised a lot of people when it launched on PlayStation Plus during the summer of 2020. Mixing up the battle royale formula with game shows like Wipeout, Fall Guys quickly took over the internet for a couple of months. It's the perfect game to play with a group of friends or with strangers online. I guarantee you'll have fun either way.
Up to 60 players in the cute form of what look to be jelly beans compete in increasingly wacky and difficult obstacle courses until only one remains. The winner earns a coveted crown, which can then be used to purchase cosmetics in the in-game store. Developer Mediatonic has released a few seasons of different content already, one Medieval-themed and another for the winter. Time will only tell what the future holds for this game, but it's looking quite bright.
Best PS5 Games for Kids
Not every game is child-friendly. In fact, I'd wager many of the most popular holiday releases tend to be rated T or M more adult audiences. Thankfully there are still plenty of options for the younger crowd to enjoy. The PS5 launched with some amazing games for kids, and I only expect more as the years go on. Here are what we consider to be some of the best PS5 games for kids.
From the developers behind Octodad: Dadliest Catch comes Bugsnax, another zany title that introduces players to the titular Bugsnax creatures. Part bug, part snack, these creatures wander around Snaktooth Island just waiting for you to photograph and capture. These tasty little treats can then be fed to the local Grumpuses in the area, transforming parts of their bodies based on what they ate. Yes, it's kind of horrifying for such a cute game.
On top of cataloging these creatures, you have a dual motive for traveling to Snaktooth Island. Famed explorer Lizbert Megafig seems to have gone missing, and it's up to you to uncover what happened. Trust me when I say that it's a lot weirder than you may think, even for a game about half-bug, half-snack animals.
Astro's Playroom is a sequel to the VR title Astro Bot Rescue Mission, but you don't need to worry about needing a VR headset to play it. Astro's Playroom is a 3D platformer meant to showcase the capabilities of the DualSense controller and it comes pre-installed on every PS5 console. It takes full advantage of its haptic feedback and adaptive triggers, allowing you to truly feel your actions in-game, creating a more immersive experience than ever.
Astro's Playroom is also filled to the brim with PlayStation nostalgia. Not only is each of its four main areas based on a section of the PS5 (GPU Jungle, SSD Speedway, Colling Spring, and Memory Meadow) but these sections also have hidden items and Easter eggs from PlayStation's past to collect, like the PS3 controller and other accessories over the years.
Sackboy: A Big Adventure
While not developed by LittleBigPlanet creators Media Molecule, which has since moved on to Dreams, Sackboy: A Big Adventure managed to capture the series' charm thanks to the work of Sumo Digital. Sackboy is enjoying his time in Craftworld, but when the villainous Vex disrupts the peace and threatens to destroy Craftworld and everyone in it, it's up to Sackboy to save the day.
Unlike LittleBigPlanet, which focused heavily on user-created content, Sackboy: A Big Adventure features dozens of levels designed by Sumo Digital. These can either be played solo or with up to four players in co-op. Our Sackboy: A Big Adventure review called it "the PlayStation version of Super Mario 3D World," which is "absolutely deserving of a place in any gamer's library."
Best Free-to-play Games on PS5
Games are expensive, but they don't have to be. There's an entire catalog of free-to-play games on PS5, meaning you don't have to pay a penny to play them. While they do tend to include microtransactions to purchase cosmetics and other new gear, you don't need to spend anything on them. If you're looking to have some fun but are on a strict budget, these are some of the best free games on PS5.
Genshin Impact has an enhanced PS5 version alongside its PS4 backward compatible edition. This action RPG is set in the fantasy world of Teyvat, home to seven regions that worship gods known as Archons. After your character becomes trapped in Teyvat, it's up to you to reunite with your twin who has been taken by one of the gods, all the while helping the people across the lands with their own conflicts.
Though it is free-to-play, Genshin Impact has gatcha mechanics, a way to monetize the game and subsidize development. I know microtransactions are a dreaded practice that a lot of people hate, but they're not as bad as they sound on paper here.
Fortnite, aside from being one of the best multiplayer games, also happens to be free-to-play. Its battle royale mode is played by well over 100 million people, many of which buy into its microtransactions to keep Epic pumping out content. It's arguably more fun when you spend some money on it, but the option is there to play it completely free if you want to.
As far as games-as-service go, you'll be looking at years of support for Fortnite to come. Epic knows it struck gold here, and with constant partnerships between pop culture icons, there's no slowing it down.
I was surprised to see Sony offer a free pack-in title coming pre-installed on every PS5, but it makes sense. Astro's Playroom is the perfect tech demo to showcase what the DualSense is made of, and that's exactly the kind of first impression you want to make. It's rather short — only a few hours — but it's well worth your time.
In our Astro's Playroom review, we said: "Not only is Astro's Playroom a fantastic little 3D platformer that proves Astro has real mascot potential for the PlayStation brand, but it's also an excellent demo for the DualSense controller and a no-brainer recommendation since it's the first game anybody should play on their newly opened PlayStation 5."
Apex Legends is Respawn's answer to Fortnite. Instead of battling until one person remains, Apex Legends is more of a team sport. Sixty players, each in teams of three, battle it out with unique characters that have their own skillsets and abilities. To make it even cooler, it's set within the same sci-fi universe as Titanfall, another property by developer Respawn Entertainment.
Like Fortnite, Apex Legends features microtransactions along with battle passes and new seasons of content to keep the experience fresh for players. If Fortnite isn't your cup of tea, Apex Legends changes up the formula just enough to maybe be your battle royale of choice.
Call of Duty: Warzone
Not to be left out of the battle royale fun, Call of Duty has its own version, Call of Duty Warzone. Up to 150 players can compete in a match, with some limited-time modes allowing for a whopping 200 players to enter the battlefield at once. Because this is a Call of Duty title, you can bet it has some of the best gunplay in the business, Warzone being developer by season pros Infinity Ward.
Other than its name and graphics to differentiate it from the likes of Fortnite and Apex Legends, it's a mostly typical battle royale with a shrinking map. What's nice though is that it features cross-play if you log in with an Activision account, letting people on Xbox and PlayStation play with one another.
When Destiny 2: Shadowkeep released, the base game went free-to-play. While it may not have as much content, it's still a full-fledged game with plenty to do. In addition to its PvE content, you can also play multiplayer PvP in the Crucible. To put it simply: you'll get all of its year-one content and some of its year two content. None of its year-three content or anything afterward will be included in the free-to-play version.
This is a great way to get in on the fun without having to spend a dime. Destiny 2 wasn't in the best shape when it launched, but with constant support Bungie built a solid foundation for future expansions.
Best PS5 Horror Games
Horror games come in all sorts of shapes and sizes. Whether you're looking for psychological horror, slashers, supernatural thrillers, or something in-between, the horror genre encompasses a lot. The PS5 hasn't seen too many top-tier horror games yet, but it has a couple at the moment that are excellent.
Resident Evil Village
Resident Evil Village made waves when it was first announced, partially because of Lady Dimitrescu, who the internet lovingly dubbed Tall Vampire Lady. However, she's only one part of a much larger game, but Capcom knew how to market Village right. She and her three daughters constantly stalk you around the castle, and there are plenty of scares to be had, but that's just that one section.
Village follows Ethan Winters after the events of Resident Evil 7. When Chris Redfield barges into his life and turns it upside down, Ethan ventures to a mysterious European village where Lycans, vampires, and other unsightly creatures rule. Our review said, "Resident Evil Village takes everything you loved about the franchise and combined it with some homages to classic and modern horror to create something unique in video games today. It's an absolute spectacle, showing off the best of the RE Engine and the PS5 as a bonus."
Returnal took everyone by surprise when it released. Coming from Housemarque, the developer of Resogun, it proved that the studio could do cinematic games that stand tall among the AAA crowd. What's better is that it takes full advantage of the PS5 DualSense controller, utilizing its haptic feedback and adaptive triggers for an engaging experience.
This roguelike features a time loop where you control an astronaut who crashes on a strange alien planet. It's brutally difficult but equally as gorgeous and fun. Just be careful because as soon as you die, you're sent back to the beginning. Our Returnal review called it a "mesmerizing blend of action and psychological horror;" one that comes packed with impeccable roguelike gameplay, a surprising story, and gorgeous visuals.
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