Last Updated: September 29th
Gaming is more democratic than ever. Thanks to a combination of streamlined code and economic necessity, most games are playable on most platforms. But there are still subtle differences, and there are a few games that you can only play, or should only play, on a Playstation console. So here are the 10 best PS4 games so far.
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FromSoftware made their names with a PS3 exclusive, Demon’s Souls, that they developed into the Dark Souls franchise. Bloodborne keeps the creepy atmosphere while shifting the tone, era, and mechanics. Instead of fighting your way through a dark fantasy world, you’re instead a pale stranger trapped in the Lovecraftian city of Yharnam, whose obsession with blood magic has clogged it with madmen and twisted monsters. From’s careful, strategic gameplay and hard-as-nails gameplay is in full force here, but it’s just challenging enough to keep you playing, and the Lovecraftian atmosphere and pitch-perfect level design make for a game you won’t soon forget.
Set in an adorable papercraft world full of animate origami people and animals, Tearaway Unfolded is both a challenging platformer and one of the most creative, inventive games on any platform. Media Molecule makes full use of the PS4’s features, from its tilt controls to its motion sensor, and furthermore does it in a way that feels thoughtful. Too often showy games like this can feel like the flashier elements are shoehorned in, but it’s a smooth, fascinating process that constantly varies the gameplay and gives you all sorts of clever puzzles to solve.
Shadow Of The Beast
The original Shadow of the Beast is a beloved game on the Amiga, but while its trippy visuals and intense story gained it a cult following in Europe, it never really got much of a shot with the rest of the world. And unfortunately, as technology ages, it’s made playing the original all but impossible for everyone except emulator fans and dedicated Amiga hobbyists. All that has changed thanks to Sony backing the side-scrolling brawler’s remaster. The story is the same, but the graphics are cleaner, the game mechanics are tighter, and more importantly, players can finally get a taste of gaming history.
The Order: 1886
Ready At Dawn’s shooter is one of the most tightly polished games on the PS4, full stop. The gameplay is intense, but varied, as you fight your way through an alternate Victorian era where the Knights of the Round Table are real immortals. It’s also a game that really shows off the PS4’s graphical firepower in subtle ways, while not detracting from the intense showdown and gun battles. It got in trouble with critics for being short, but in some ways that’s only because you’ll wish it would never end.
No Man’s Sky
The heavily hyped game debuted to fans who weren’t quite sure what to make of it this year, but No Man’s Sky has the distinction of doing something different. Where most games make exploration a side quest, No Man’s Sky wants you to poke around, look at planets, find resources, delve into caves, and just find all the new, weird, different stuff scattered around every planet. It’s the rare game that wants you to relax, take in the sights, and see what it has for you.
inFamous: Second Son
The inFamous franchise has been a clever take on superheroics, giving players the choice of being a hero or becoming an outright bad guy. That choice becomes especially keen with Delsin Rowe, a member of Washington state’s Akomish tribe who discovers he has the power to absorb powers from his fellow superhumans and finds himself trapped in a Seattle under government lockdown. The game changed up a lot about the franchise, taking it to a real city for the first time and providing the widest range of superpowers yet for gamers to play with. But the core of Sucker Punch’s ridiculously fun franchise remains the same; finding bad guys and taking the fight to them with your superhuman abilities.
Everybody’s Gone To The Rapture
For this unusual-by-any-standards game, Sony hired art game studio The Chinese Room to deliver a story that you piece together in the aftermath of a seeming chemical attack on a small English town. But there are no bodies, no signs of violence, not even any animals, and you slowly figure out what happened by observing the town and the mysterious lights that seem to reenact key moments before the strike.
Give this puzzle platformer credit for innovation. You play a silhouette trapped in a series of infographics who needs to figure out how each area works. The trick is that the infographics track you, the player, and your actions in the game, so everything you do changes the environment, making for a tricky set of puzzles.
Until Dawn is a classic slasher movie plot: A bunch of teens are stuck on top of a mountain in a creepy lodge, with no power, no connection to the outside world, and a serial killer on the loose. Or is there one? This innovative mix of horror movie tropes and game mechanics lets you change the story at dozens of points, making each playthrough entirely different. It’s a fascinating experiment, and a fun slasher flick into the bargain, courtesy of horror maestro Larry Fessenden.
What would this list be, without a little Nathan Drake? Sony’s roguish adventurer gets what’s arguably his best-designed, best-written adventure yet as he tries to reconcile with his brother and find some lost treasure at the same time. Full of Naughty Dog’s signature setpieces and cinematic style, Uncharted 4 might be the last of the series, but it sends it out on top.