If you like your first-person shooters fast, demanding, and bloody, DOOM Eternal is the peak. A fantastic gameplay loop means you're constantly on the move and playing aggressively, earning more ammo and health by getting right up in those demonic faces and literally ripping them a new one. On PS5, it's somehow even better, with three visual modes — including one with ray tracing — and DualSense support. A brilliant FPS that really sings on Sony's current hardware.
Team Ninja's answer to the popular Dark Souls series is Nioh, a punishing but satisfying action RPG based on Japanese history and folklore. The Nioh Collection on PS5 brings the two titles together in one package. Fortunately, both games are excellent — fairly linear but featuring fast, deadly melee combat that has you swapping between stances to gain the upper hand. The pair of games are remastered for the up-to-date hardware, running at up to 120 frames-per-second on the right display, and support DualSense's haptics and adaptive triggers. Two cracking action titles for the price of one, and looking and playing better than ever on PS5? A no-brainer.
Looking at it now, it's genuinely hard to believe that Final Fantasy XIV Online: A Realm Reborn started life as a terribly misguided and badly designed MMO that came close to sinking one of Square Enix's internal development teams. Its rebirth has been one of modern gaming's most extraordinary success stories, and the game is now widely considered to be one of the greatest MMORPGs ever made. Bolstered by multiple extremely well received expansions, A Realm Reborn has gone from strength to strength, and it continues to attract millions of players. Many would even argue that it's the best Final Fantasy game of the last decade — MMO or not.
Death Stranding Director's Cut takes the truly unique "strand game" adventure and dials things up a notch for PS5. Hideo Kojima and his team created a haunting and strange world with the original game, tasking players with traversing a desolate and dangerous landscape to make deliveries. It shouldn't work, but it does — every step you take can be a risk, and this need to watch your footing is an interesting way to create tension, especially when those nasty BTs show up. Director's Cut enhances the experience with improved graphics and performance, DualSense support, 3D audio, and a range of new content.
Elden Ring’s crowning achievement is taking a relatively niche gameplay loop – refined over the years with Demon’s Souls, Bloodborne, et al – and presenting it to the masses. FromSoftware’s open world magnum opus is a staggering achievement: a sandbox bursting at the seams with vulgar secrets, all presented with enough ambiguity to make combing every square inch of its dramatic Lands Between backdrop feel like true discovery. With a complex combat system enabling an eclectic array of gameplay styles, and some of the most devilish encounters in gaming history, this is an unmissable experience – and then some.
Segmented into a selection of sprawling sinister landscapes, celebrated director Hidetaka Miyazaki’s ambitious open world harbours more secrets than you may imagine. Cliff edges hide untouched catacombs, littered with loot and guarded by grotesque enemies, while the friendly characters you encounter gradually make way to sprawling quest lines that will send you all over the open world.
While you will need assistance to discover much of the game’s more obscure content – and we recommend reading through our Elden Ring guide before you embark – a big part of this fantasy favourite’s appeal is simply getting lost in its world. With the bottlenecks of past entries mostly eradicated due to the sheer scale of its sandbox, no two adventures will ever be the same.
In fact, the title’s versatility is one of its defining features. With a dizzying selection of armaments to choose from, ranging spellbinding incantations through to deadly seven-foot swords, the game gives you the freedom to inject your own personality into it. And whether you’re playing in single player alone or in co-op with a companion, you’ll find what feels like a never-ending array of artillery to experiment with and areas to explore.
FromSoftware has never been blessed with technical chops, and while the painterly art direction borders on the sublime, some minor frame hitching and graphical glitches can be a concern. But these are minor blights in a tour-de-force: a culmination of everything the Japanese developer has spent the past decade and a bit working to achieve.
When you think of co-op games, one should spring to mind immediately: It Takes Two. This action adventure is from the makers of Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons and A Way Out, and sees you and a partner take on the role of an estranged couple. Turned into dolls by their daughter's tears, you and a friend must go on a wildly imaginative, endlessly varied, adventure to return to normal. Constantly presenting you with new puzzles and ideas, each as good as the last, you'll never grow weary of this brilliant game, playable locally or online.
Not that it needed to, but with Returnal, Housemarque has proven itself an incredibly capable studio. This PS5 exclusive is a frantic, ultra-tight third person shooter dressed up with some rogue-like elements to add variety and unpredictability to the mix, and the result is wonderful.
Trapped in a loop on a hostile alien world, Selene is forced to relive her fateful crash landing each time she dies. There's an amazing sense of accomplishment as you slowly progress through challenging boss encounters and explore six diverse environments full of randomised weapons, perks, and power-ups. It feels amazing to play, especially with amazing support for the DualSense's features, and the addictive gameplay is complemented by an enigmatic story that will leave you guessing.
The best part is that's just the start. A slew of additional modes flesh out Returnal, giving you a few extra ways to play when you're done with the single player campaign. The daily challenge mode provides all players with a fixed loadout and room layouts, with the goal of amassing the highest score possible by exploring and playing skilfully. Beyond that is the Tower of Sisyphus, an endless arcade mode that similarly tasks you with getting the highest score you can, only there's more of a sense of urgency. You're rewarded not just for skilled play but for fast play — your multiplier will start to tick down if you loiter for too long. The Tower also contains additional story, adding more layers to the mysterious narrative the main game offers.
Finally, there's two-player online co-op. This allows you to join or invite another player and go through the main campaign with a companion, potentially alleviating some of the challenge. While it isn't the primary focus of Returnal, the co-op works splendidly; resources are shared between you, forcing you to make decisions on who gets what, and a revival mechanic lets you bring each other back into the fight. It's just as much fun taking on the world of Atropos with a friend as it is alone, if not more so.
Whether you're in it for the world class gameplay, the atmospheric sci-fi setting, the intentionally mysterious story, or the variety of extra modes, Returnal is among the most robust, rewarding, and addictive games on PS5.
Sony comfortably hooked the enthusiast crowd by adding Demon’s Souls to the PS5’s launch lineup. FromSoftware’s legendary action RPG – which would go on to spawn the so-called Soulsborne series and, eventually, even Elden Ring – was snubbed by the Japanese giant during the PS3 era, as it felt early builds were simply not up to snuff. Publishers like Atlus and Bandai Namco eventually picked it up, and it went on to become a cult classic. Perhaps as a tacit admission that it made a mistake, its recruited tech specialists Bluepoint Games to remake the game for a modern era – and the results are remarkable. This version uses original PS3 code to make for an incredibly authentic experience, but its visuals are among some of the best you’ll find on Sony’s new-gen console. It’s an extraordinary blend of old and new that comes highly recommended.
After Gran Turismo Sport’s esports centric approach, Gran Turismo 7 returns to the revered RPG format of developer Polyphony Digital’s long-running simulation racing series. With a slick driving model and hundreds of cars to collect, it’s the addictive Pokémon-esque GT Café that will keep franchise faithfuls occupied for hours on end. And for competitive players, the online approach innovated by GT Sport remains intact, making for the most complete Gran Turismo in a generation.
Ghost of Tsushima: Director’s Cut repackages one of the greatest open world games of the PS4 era on the PS5. A breakout hit for first-party developer Sucker Punch, this expanded re-release includes a new idyllic samurai sandbox named Iki Island, and forces protagonist Jin Sakai to face some painful memories. With improved presentation and stunning DualSense support, allowing you to physically feel the clash of steel-on-steel in your fingertips, this is the definitive version of one of PlayStation Studios’ crowning achievements.
It represents an interesting change of direction for the team, which during the PS2 era was best known for its cutesy mascot platformers, Sly Cooper. Moving into the PS3 era, the Seattle studio cut its teeth in the open world arena with inFAMOUS, a superhero series spanning a variety of unique powers, including the unusual Video and Neon abilities of inFAMOUS: Second Son.
There are similarities between all three series, despite the obvious deviations in setting and tone. Ghost of Tsushima, as zen as it can be, has a very aggressive combat system, which sees you cutting through Mongols rapidly and using all manner of samurai gadgetry to make your approach. While it’s not necessarily the game’s strongest asset, you can approach many skirmishes in stealth – or simply challenge your adversaries head-on to a duel.
As a sandbox, there are few surprises in Tsushima and its expanded Iki Island, although the way points of interest are presented is particularly original. Rather than rely on compasses and maps, the developer uses the wind to guide Sakai to key regions of interest, while wildlife like birds and foxes will lead the way to Hot Springs and collectibles.
It all makes for a serene experience during exploration, accentuated by the otherworldly visual style. Ghost of Tsushima: Director’s Cut presents a romantic glimpse into historical Japan, but its virtual tourism is arguably unmatched, making it one of the greatest open world adventure games you can currently play on PlayStation – or any console for that matter. A surprisingly robust online suite, named Ghost of Tsushima: Legends, rounds out the package impressively.
There we are, then: your list of the best online multiplayer games on PS5. What do you think of the list? Is it looking about right, or are there glaring omissions? If you want to see changes, don't forget it's up to you to alter things. Rate games accordingly by using the search tool at the top of this article, or by visiting a game's page. Your score can and will affect the rankings! Also, if a game you want to rate isn't in our PlayStation Games Database, please let us know and we can get it added.