The PS4 has entered the sixth year of its existence, which means we feel both incredibly old and have countless titles to enjoy on Sony’s current family of consoles. With no sign of the PS5, the company continues to concentrate its efforts on providing players with stellar first-party exclusives like God of War, Uncharted and Shadow of the Colossus.
Related: E3 2019 latest news and announements
1. Resident Evil 2
- Tense and terrifying
- Heavy and responsive gunplay
- An unpredictable challenge across both campaigns
- Plenty of great unlockables
- We would have loved to see more of Raccoon City
- Could have been a little longer
Capcom has set a new benchmark for the gaming remake with Resident Evil 2, translating the 1998 survival horror classic onto modern hardware with one of the genre’s finest experiences in years. Leon Kennedy’s and Claire Redfield’s debut is utterly terrifying, taking us through Raccoon City as its overran with undead hordes.
Adopting the over-the-shoulder perspective of Resident Evil 4 and the slow-burning horror of the seventh entry, this remake feels like the perfect culmination of everything we love about the modern formula. Every corner teases a new, awful threat we are powerless to avoid, dealing with it best we can. Those looking to spook themselves silly simply have to play this one.
Read our full Resident Evil 2 review
2. Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice
- Every combat encounter is brutally satisfying
- The world is gorgeous and brimming with deep, dark secrets
- Doesn’t hold your hand and is all the better for it
- A wonderful setting filled with fascinating tales and characters
- Camera can prove frustrating at times
Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice is one of the best games to emerge this year, adding yet another masterpiece to FromSoftware’s formidable catalogue of grim, uncompromising experiences.
Nearly every encounter feels like a nuanced session of cat-and-mouse as you dance alongside the enemy, culminating in a final act that leaves them in a puddle of their own defeat.
This combines with a colourful world that takes an already explored narrative linearity and uses it to its advantage to tell a tragic tale that’s genuinely brilliant.
Read our full Sekiro review
3. God of War
- Incredibly gorgeous
- Huge amount of gameplay
- Most satisfying combat system
- Depth to the combat via character upgrades
- Excellent father/son tale
- Zero load screens
- Boss encounters massively underwhelm
- Change of pace certainly won’t be for all
- Ending falls flat
God of War is yet another first-party phenomenon for Sony. On PS4 Pro, in particular, the game is absolutely stunning throughout its incredible 50+ hours of superlative gameplay. While a substantial departure from other entries in the franchise, it is by far the best game in the series to date.
With an incredibly satisfying combat system, an utterly gripping father/son story and some of the most imaginative world design you’ll ever see, this is an essential purchase for all PS4 owners.
Read our full God of War review
4. Marvel’s Spider-Man
- Travelling the city feels incredible
- Punching, but with webs
- Fan service
- Forced stealth sections
- No real rewards for all those collectibles
Marvel’s Spider-Man is a wonderful superhero experience, and arguably the best we’ve ever seen from the wise-cracking webhead. Developed by Insomniac Games, the minds behind Sunset Overdrive and Ratchet Clank have crafted a sprawling vision of Manhattan that is simply joyous to swing around in.
Combat is fast, kinetic and satisfying with ample upgrades and unloackable suits to experiment with as you progress. There’s some deep cuts here, whether you’re a fan of Scarlet Spider or the highly-advanced suit from Avengers: Infinity War.
And we haven’t even mentioned the story, which manages to weave a narrative yearn that shocks and surprises in equal measure. It’s excellent, complimented by stellar performances and ending that blows the doors open for a sequel in the coming years.
Read our full Marvel’s Spider-Man review
5. Soul Calibur 6
- Looks great
- Brilliant, varied roster
- Loads of content for the single player
- Easy to pick up, but with depth in interesting systems
- Tutorial features are limited
We’re spoilt for choice when it comes to great fighting games this generation, and now Soulcalibur 6 has waltzed in, arguably putting all of the competition to shame. Bandai Namco has delivered the series’ finest entry since the second, bringing back a classic roster with absurdly refined mechanics and a strong repertoire of modes to sink into.
New moves such as the Critical and Reversal Edge ensure that Soulcalibur 6 is an entry that both hardcore veterans and cautious newcomers can enjoy without much worry. Whether you’re fond of mashing buttons or meticulously memorising combos, there’s something for you to love here. Geralt from The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt is also a guest character with more crossover personalities already announced to debut as part of the season pass.
Read our full Soul Calibur 6 review
6. Uncharted: The Lost Legacy
- The same great Uncharted gameplay
- Chloe and Nadine make great protagonists
- Astonishing visuals
- Huge set-pieces and ingenious world design
- Leaves you wanting more
- More of the same (if mostly in a good way)
This standalone Uncharted adventure stars Chloe Frazer and Nadine Ross as they travel across the world in search on an ancient treasure. Despite taking place outside the main series, The Lost Legacy is equally as beautiful and hectic as its siblings. Following on from the stellar Uncharted 4, this is an experience you can’t miss.
Stuart Andrews adored it, awarding Lost Legacy 10/10 in his review: “To my mind, this isn’t merely one of the best games of the summer, but one of the season’s best blockbusters in any media. If Naughty Dog wants to leave the series here, it’s hard to grumble, but let’s hope it doesn’t. Right now, more Uncharted seems like anything but a bad idea.”
Naturally, as a first-party game, this game takes full advantage of the PS4 Pro, with 4K visuals and HDR.
Read our full Uncharted: Lost Legacy review
7. The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt
- Huge, coherent and immersive game world
- Game systems and storyline both engage
- Beautifully rendered characters and scenery
- Crammed with interesting quests, side-quests and activities
- Geralt a more mature and sympathetic lead
- Long loading times
- Occasional framerate drop
The Witcher 3 is, to many, the best RPG to emerge this generation. Geralt’s swansong is a truly massive effort, spanning a formidable world filled with unique quests, interesting characters and terrifying monsters for our grey-haired hero to contend with.
CD Projekt Red complimented the experience with two impressive expansions: Hearts of Stone and Blood and Wine, both of which expand upon the world while introducing entirely new locations. A ludicrous amount of loving polish has gone into this, and the countless hours we lost to do count as proof.
With the studio now fully dedicated to Cyberpunk 2077, we can’t wait to see what it has in store for us next.
Read our full The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt Review
8. The Last of Us Remastered
- Superb storytelling and immersive gameplay
- Enhanced graphics and consistently smooth frame rates
- Includes the brilliant Left Behind expansion
- Factions multiplayer mode works better
- Visual enhancements not as huge as you might expect
- No compelling reason to buy it again
The Last of Us was arguably the best game on PS3, and its remaster still stands tall as one of the best PS4 games you can buy. The re-release brings updated graphics, including HDR support and 4K upscaling for PS4 Pro. There are also graphical improvements, increased draw distance, a better combat mechanic and better framerate. Plus there’s the simply sublime photo mode, which we believe makes any game better.
This edition also includes the captivating Left Behind expansion, which follows Ellie in her very own tale. With The Last of Us Part 2 on the way, there’s no better time to jump in and familiarise yourself with the game that started it all.
Read our full The Last of Us Remastered review
9. Horizon Zero Dawn
- The most gorgeous console game ever made
- So much stuff to do
- An engaging story
- Waypointing can be a little iffy
Horizon Zero Dawn is quite simply the most gorgeous console game ever made. Whether you’re gaming on PS4 or PS4 Pro, it’s a beautiful title that needs to be seen to be believed. It is also one of the finest example of HDR use in gaming.
But Guerrilla Games has also delivered so much more: Horizon is a compelling story told with an incredibly satisfying gameplay loop. As Aloy, you will take to this glorious open world, bow and arrows in hand, and hunt everything in site. It’s an immensely enjoyable game and a must-buy for PS4 players.
Read our full Horizon Zero Dawn review
- Smart level design
- Consistent, satisfying mechanics
- Thick, moody atmosphere
- Frequently frustrating
- Obscure style may annoy
From the creators of Demon’s Souls and Dark Souls comes Bloodborne, a spiritual successor that arguably surpasses the classics that came before it. It’s challenging, rewarding and utterly wondrous in the world it gives you to explore.
If you’re a fan of experiences that aren’t afraid of leaving you isolated to fend for yourself, Bloodborne is right up your alley. Its combat is dense, unforgiving and absurdly satisfying to master, and there’s plenty of weapons to do such a thing with.
FromSoftware’s next project: Sekiro – Shadows Die Twice, follows a similar pace to Bloodborne with its ferocious combat and open-ended exploration. If it’s anywhere near as good, we’re in for another masterpiece.
Read our full Bloodborne review
11. Devil May Cry 5
- Three distinct, charming characters to play as
- Combat can be fast, frantic and challenging throughout
- A surprising amount of depth to combo and upgrades
- Distinctly striking visual design amidst environments and enemies
- Ends rather abruptly due to odd pacing
- Level design can grow a bit repetitive
Capcom’s streak of modern brilliance continues with Devil May Cry 5, a sequel that encapsulates everything we adore about the hack ‘n’ slash series while also managing to surprise us around every conceivable corner. It really is quite something.
You play as Nero, Dante and V as the trio seek to take down a mysterious demon known as Urizen. The enemy has taken over Red Grave City and it’s up to our heroes to set things right, even if it means getting their hands dirty with stylish demon blood.
Those looking for an action title in the modern generation can’t do much better than this. DMC 5 offers oodles of replay value and three distinct characters to master across its surprisingly long campaign.
Read our full Devil May Cry 5 Review
12. NieR Automata
- Satisfying combat
- Inventive and surprising
- Movement feels incredible
- Brilliant soundtrack
- Invisible walls
- Camera can be annoying
- Ugly in places
NieR: Automata has surpassed all expectations for Square Enix, cementing itself as a modern classic in the eyes of critics and fans alike. Acting as a sequel to an underrated cult hit, Automata follows 2B and 9S, androids entrusted by humanity to eliminate a robotic threat thousands of years after the apocalypse.
While it may not rank among Platinum Games’ finest, the imaginative mixture of high-octane combat and the wonderfully compelling story makes NieR: Automata an essential purchase for fans of obscure Japanese games. From the looks of it, Yoko Taro has struck gold once again with this mythical masterpiece.
Read our full NieR: Automata review
13. Yakuza 6: Song of Life
- A spectacular conclusion to Kiryu’s story
- Brutal and engaging combat
- Two distinct cities to explore
- An overwhelming of stuff to do
- No more UFO Catchers
- Camera can be finicky at times
- The last we’ll see of Kazuma Kiryu
Yakuza 6 is the latest entry in the thrilling series and marks the greatest game for the franchise yet. Embracing everything that has made prior entries so captivating and improving it, this is a game that will enthral fans both new and old.
The best part about it is Yakuza 6 is perfectly suited for newcomers, with tweaks to combat offering the most fluid game yet. Of course players who have enjoyed Kazuma Kiryu’s adventures over the past decade will be far more rewarded by this experience, but there’s still a great game here for everyone.
Read our full Yakuza 6 review
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