15. Persona 5
The power of friendship should never be underestimated, and while the core plot of Persona 5 isn't the most original when it comes to gaming, it's the endearing characters and your interactions with them that really elevate the best Japanese RPG on the PS4. Spanning across 100 or so hours of playtime, this is a anime-infused epic that keeps you glued to the controller.
A prequel from a different developer: what could possibly go wrong? Well, in the case of Life Is Strange: Before the Storm, not a whole lot. While the game works from DONTNOD’s blueprint, developer Deck Nine constructed a spin-off story that’s arguably more consistent than the Parisian studio’s original. Protagonist Chloe’s whirlwind romance with Rachel Amber is poignant, and while the season is hurried to a conclusion, it’s lovely while it lasts.
While so many interactive dramas cheat, Detroit: Become Human is the most adaptable narrative ever conceived. Lead characters can die in the opening hours of the story, and that’s the last you’ll see of them for the remainder of the campaign. The robotic revolution plotline can be a bit heavy-handed, but as with all Quantic Dream games, there are some real high-points that will stick with you long after the credits roll.
12. Gone Home
It’s the way that Gone Home subverts expectations that makes it such an iconic piece of interactive fiction. Pitched as a kind of horror game, it uses environmental story-telling to flesh out the lives of its slim cast of characters. But the game plays with your emotions right the way through to its euphoric conclusion, teasing you with an unfortunate outcome that never quite happens – and hitting you with a joyous sucker punch that will leave you blubbing.
11. Yakuza 0
Stretching a story across multiple protagonists can sometimes be enough to fracture and disjoint an otherwise intriguing narrative, but Yakuza 0 pulls it off masterfully. Regularly switching between two leads in Kiryu and Majima, the plot constantly keeps you on your toes with some superb twists. And as is always the case with SEGA's seedy series, an incredibly strong cast of characters bolster the experience further.