The Best PS5 Games

PS5 is the fastest-selling console in U.S. history based on dollar sales – an impressive feat considering Sony’s next-gen machine has rarely been in stock since it was released last November. If you were lucky enough to secure a PS5 and are wondering where to dive into its already-vast library, IGN is here to help with a curated list of the ten best PS5 games you can play right now.

Between exclusive launch titles, third-party games, and backward compatibility on PS5, there’s a lot to choose from, and with a few big releases in the beginning of 2021, we’ve updated our list to feature all PS5 games, no PS4 backward-compatible games. Our main qualifier now is that, given how many cross-gen games there are, games on this list have to have a dedicated next-gen version available.

There’s plenty to choose from and more exciting games to come, and thanks to the new external hard drive support from the latest PS5 update you’ll be able to store them all. Some games make excellent use of the DualSense controller’s innovative haptic feedback, others will make your gaming TV shine with 4K gameplay, and some are just plain great games. Without further ado, here are our initial picks for the ten best PS5 games.

Most recent updates were made on April 23, 2021.

More on the best of PlayStation:

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10. Yakuza: Like a Dragon

If you’ve never played a Yakuza game, fear not. Yakuza: Like a Dragon acts as a soft reboot, introducing a new protagonist and swapping the usual solo real-time brawling for turn-based combat and a party system. Yakuza has always had some role-playing DNA, but Like a Dragon fully embraces it to big success. Its hero Ichiban Kasuga is a die-hard fan of the Dragon Quest games, and many familiar JRPG tropes and mechanics are simultaneously parodied in Like a Dragon and also implemented extremely well. There’s a layer of meta-comedy sprinkled throughout, and though it gets extremely silly, it never feels out of place or distracting. Like all Yakuza games, there’s a long, engrossing, deadly serious crime opera of a main campaign, a slew of utterly ridiculous substories around every corner, and a suite of surprisingly addictive minigames, from business management to kart racing. But this time it’s set in Yakuza’s biggest locale to date, the bustling port city of Yokohama, coming together to set the franchise off in a new, exciting direction.

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9. Sackboy: A Big Adventure

While Sackboy: A Big Adventure foregoes the creation side of the LittleBigPlanet series, its focus on being a fun, charming platformer pays off in a delightful adventure that can be played both solo or co-op. Sumo Digital’s level variety keeps things fresh, so one moment you’re riding a train through a moving level that has you occasionally jumping off to grab collectibles, while the next you’re grooving through a level set to Bruno Mars’ Uptown Funk (yes, really).

The humor is cheeky, particularly when playing in co-op – you can help your teammates or just slap them with a fish. And – as with most games we’ve seen on PS5 – it’s a visual treat. Sackboy looks great; the different fabrics and accessories on each of his customizable costume pieces dazzling thanks to the new system’s improved graphical capability.

Sackboy took home two BAFTA Game Awards: Best British Game and Best Family Game.

8. Bugsnax

Talkin’ bout Bugsnax started out as internet meme fodder brought on by a strong marketing campaign and a catchy tune, but Bugsnax deserves to be recognized for much more than that.

Developer Young Horses continued its absurdist streak with this environmental/creature based puzzle game that has you snapping photos and catching tasty critters. Underneath Bugsnax’s cute and quirky exterior is a heartwarming story full of ominous twists and turns as you try to rebuild a settlement by fulfilling folks’ requests. Each returned resident means another person to interview for the story you’re writing about Bugsnax, Snaktooth island, and – ultimately – what happened to Elizabert Megafig, who invited you to the island, to begin with. Its progression systems continue to pique our curiosity, too, which makes the gameplay loop enticing throughout – and Bugsnax’s big reveal (no spoilers!) didn’t disappoint.

Bugsnax’s cute, colorful exterior originally hid a much darker ending.

7. The Pathless

The Pathless marries a simple-but-elegant (and completely engrossing) movement mechanic with a gorgeous open world. Running, jumping, and gliding through developer Giant Squid’s forests, rocky plateaus, and snow-capped mountains is a treat thanks to the main bow-and-arrow gameplay relying less on precision accuracy and more on empowering you to carve a fun path through the terrain. It’s a world that encourages exploration and satisfies your curiosity, making the destinations you reach as fun as the journey itself thanks to a host of clever puzzles. Add in a handful of boss battles that are part epic chase scene and part Zelda-esque showdown – all backed by a moving, epic score – and you’ve got one of the most intriguing launch titles on the PS5.

The Pathless received a DICE Award nomination for Outstanding Achievement in in Original Music Composition.

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6. Hitman 3

Hitman 3 acts as the finale in IO Interactive’s phenomenal “World of Assassination” trilogy, turning Agent 47 loose on some of the biggest and most intricate levels yet, including the inspired Dartmoor Mansion. And it’s perhaps the finest example of IO’s formula: He can assassinate his victims with badass cold-blooded efficiency, or trigger some Rube Goldberg-style series of events that results in a much more comical death… or if something backfires, a Wile E. Coyote-grade failure. When making a new Hitman game for next-gen consoles, IO Interactive could’ve shipped one game and called it a day, but they also remastered the first two games to the point that they’re visually indistinguishable from the latest installment (sold separately, unless you own them already, in which case it’s a free upgrade). In any case, the World of Assassination Trilogy was great on PS4, but it’s even better on PS5. Anyway, long story short, you can kill a guy by making him slip on a banana peel, which is funny anywhere, but on PS5 it’s also very pretty thanks to increased resolution, smooth 60fps, and an overall smoother experience over the last-gen version.

5. Spider-Man Remastered

Marvel’s Spider-Man was already one of the best superhero games ever made, but the PS5 remaster elevates it to a new level. Insomniac’s visual updates don’t look slight in any way – the entire relighting of New York City (along with upgrades to facial animation) brings the look of the adventure up to par with the brand-new Miles Morales. The addition of ray tracing with 4K resolution and HDR support makes any time of day so beautiful that you’d be forgiven for forgetting this wasn’t running on code originally developed for the PS5. Add in the quality of life improvements Spidey got post-launch, new accessibility options, photo mode updates, and all the DLC episodes, and this is the definitive way to play one of the PS4’s best games.

The superhero’s next movie, meanwhile, is titled Spider-Man: No Way Home. The film is scheduled to open on December 17.

4. Astro’s Playroom

The DualSense is one of the most defining characteristics of the PS5, as the nuanced haptic feedback and strategically used adaptive triggers create a level of immersion that feels genuinely special. Nowhere is that tech better showcased than in Astro’s Playroom which is – quite literally – designed to show off the capabilities of the Dualsense controller.

But this would-be tech demo is also a fantastic game in its own right, with a delightful set of worlds to explore that all celebrate a different facet of the PS5 and the different eras of PlayStation software and hardware. Astro’s Playroom reminds players why they’ve loved PlayStation while giving them a reason to fall in love all over again. Its solid platforming, fun environmental puzzles, and enticing set of collectibles will have you gunning for the platinum and getting it in no time.

Astro’s Playroom took home two of IGN’s end-of-year awards: Best Platformer and Most Impressive Feature in Games.

3. Assassin’s Creed Valhalla

The latest entry in the Assassin’s Creed series proves the franchise shows no signs of fatigue. Centering the story around the Viking expansion into England during the 9th century, Assassin’s Creed Valhalla has redefined the rules of the franchise yet again with the ability to sack monasteries, build up your budding Norse settlement, and uncover unique gear and powerful abilities. The PS5 beautifully captures the icy mountains of Norway and the bending rivers of England alike in stunning 4K, and the ability to travel between the war-torn kingdoms quicker than you can sound the horn for a raiding party remains impressive throughout.

Valhalla’s first expansion, Wrath of the Druids, was recently dated for April 29. It will send Eivor “through the haunted beauty of Ireland as you gain the favor of Gaelic kings and confront the druidic cult, the Children of Danu.”

2. Demon’s Souls

Bluepoint Games had some high expectations to meet with the PS5 remake of Demon’s Souls. Not only was it an anticipated remake of a beloved and landmark game, but also as the first major showcase of what a dedicated PS5 game of this scope could look like.

Fortunately, Bluepoint delivered, and Demon’s Souls is not only jaw-droppingly gorgeous, but it’s also incredibly faithful to the source material.It’s handily one of the deepest, richest, and most challenging experiences currently found on the console.

Demon’s Souls received a BAFTA Game Awards nomination for Technical Achievement.


1. Spider-Man: Miles Morales

Though not a full-blown sequel, this standalone expansion sends Peter Parker on vacation and leaves his young spider-apprentice Miles Morales to look after New York. Building on the rock-solid foundations of Insomniac’s first game, New York has been gorgeously blanketed with snow, holiday cheer, and next-gen polish.

The improvements aren’t just cosmetic, however – the eponymous hero has a few more spider-powers at his disposal than Peter Parker, and these are cleverly adapted into new gameplay mechanics that, while they don’t reinvent the wheel, they put enough of a spin on it to make it feel fresh – sometimes literally, thanks to the DualSense controller. It doesn’t feature as robust of a campaign or as many colorful villains as 2018’s Spider-Man, but Miles Morales’ story has just as much charm and heart as its predecessor, possibly more. Its tagline of “Be Greater” set a high bar, but Miles Morales somersaults over it with ease.

Spider-Man: Miles Morales was nominated for IGN’s Game of the Year 2020. It’s also up for five DICE Awards, including Action Game of the Year.

Upcoming PS5 Games

MLB The Show 21 most recently hit on April 20, while Housemarque’s intriguing roguelike third-person shooter Returnal on April 30.

Moving into May, PS5 owners can look forward to Resident Evil Village on May 7, PvPvE heist game Hood: Outlaws and Legends on May 10, and the survival sequel Subnautica: Below Zero on May 14.

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On June 10, Final Fantasy 7 Remake comes to PS5 with upgraded visuals, improved performance, and exclusive new story DLC. The following day, PS5 exclusive Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart will be released alongside Arc System Works’ latest fighter Guilty Gear Strive. Also coming in June are Dungeons & Dragons: Dark Alliance on the 22nd and Bandai Namco’s flashy action-RPG Scarlet Nexus on the 25th.

Three notable PS5 games are currently dated for the back half of 2021: the gorgeous story-driven action-adventure Kena: Bridge of Spirits on August 24, Life Is Strange: True Colors on September 10, and Bethesda’s stylish, time-looping first-person shooter Deathloop on September 14.

Also coming to PS5 this year is Abandoned, a newly revealed, exclusive cinematic horror shooter. Check out the debut trailer below.

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Updates: On April 23, God of War and Ghost of Tsushima were removed from the list, while Hitman 3 and Yakuza: Like a Dragon were added. Bugsnax and Sackboy: A Big Adventure also shifted positions on the list.

Those are our picks for the best games currently available on PlayStation 5. What’s on your list that didn’t make ours? Lets us know in the comments, and be sure to check out how the PS5 stacks up against the Xbox Series X, and have a look at what we love about Sony’s new console and where we think it needs some work.

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