Although the first game isn't available on PlayStation platforms, Octopath Traveler II is a borderline must play for fans of more traditional Japanese RPGs. It's built like a classic but with modern design elements, resulting in a refined role-playing experience. An engaging turn-based combat system and a frankly gorgeous visual style make this a seriously impressive sequel.
With creator Media Molecule focusing its attention on PS4’s boundless sandbox Dreams, LittleBigPlanet’s whimsical weaved hero deserved his Super Mario 3D World moment. Sackboy: A Big Adventure doesn’t pull up any trees like its predecessors, but is instead a robust co-operative platformer with some memorable musical moments. With a cutesy DIY aesthetic and some surprisingly tight action, it excels in an area that Sony has often been accused of overlooking: fun for the whole family.
We were tempted to just quote the entirety of Vergil's 'Bury the Light' theme here, but that would deny us an opportunity to rave about Devil May Cry 5: Special Edition on PS5. Simply put, this is an exceptional action game. It's Capcom at its absolute best, having crafted one of the greatest combat systems to ever grace the genre. In Special Edition, Vergil is the star of the show; unbelievably fun to play as and immaculately designed. This PS5 re-release also allows for instantaneous load times, a slew of graphics options, and the incredible Legendary Dark Knight mode.
57. Sifu (PS5)
Sifu is one of the most impressive tributes to martial arts that you'll find in gaming. An immaculately presented kung fu adventure, Sifu is a brutal test of reactions and skill, but in the pursuit of mastering its mechanics, you'll find an immensely rewarding experience. A superb action title if you're in the mood for a stiff challenge.
Star Wars Jedi: Survivor is the direct sequel to Fallen Order, and it's a bigger and better game in every way. It builds upon the previous title's successes — engaging lightsaber combat, semi-linear environment design — while improving on areas that needed attention. The story takes some major steps forward, protagonist Cal's character is developed meaningfully, and his supporting cast is far more interesting overall. Throw on top a hub area that gradually changes over time, oodles of optional content, and one or two awesome set pieces, and you have a truly great game, whether you're into Star Wars or not.
Death's Door isn't doing anything particularly original, but everything presented here is just so well crafted. The game is an isometric action adventure, starring you as a reaper crow who must venture out and calm the lost souls that haunt the land. The world created here is a fascinating one, designed in an almost Dark Souls-like way; it intertwines with itself and pockmarks each area with baddies to fend off. The combat is straightforward but satisfying, and the presentation is really strong throughout. It might not break the mould, but this unassuming game puts its best talon forward.
Better than its predecessor in virtually every way, A Plague Tale: Requiem is a proper sequel that improves its familiar gameplay mechanics and couples them with stunning PS5 visuals and an engaging story. It doesn't completely rewrite the script, but taking a page from the Naughty Dog playbook, this is a cinematic adventure more than worth your time.
Like a Dragon Gaiden: The Man Who Erased His Name covers yet another chapter in Kazuma Kiryu's action-packed life. This is a 'shorter' experience that adds context to Yakuza: Like a Dragon by expanding upon the behind-the-scenes events of its main story. But unlike Ichiban's adventure, Gaiden goes back to full-on action combat in what almost feels like a celebration of Kiryu as a character. It doesn't quite have the scope of a mainline instalment, but Gaiden is still a fantastic and surprisingly emotional example of SEGA's long-running series.
52. Judgment (PS5)
It may have launched on PS4 not long before this PS5 port, but Judgment is so good that it deserves every chance at success that it can get. This Yakuza spinoff puts you in the sneakers of Takayuki Yagami, a private detective living in the heart of Kamurocho, a fictional red light district that's always teetering on the edge of chaos. Tangled up in a series of brutal murders, Yagami is forced to dig deep into the city's criminal underbelly, resulting in a truly gripping story. With a brilliant cast of characters, a great combat system, and a map that's stuffed with fun distractions, Judgment is right up there with the absolute best that Yakuza has to offer.
One of the best Star Wars games in recent memory is Jedi: Fallen Order, and it's even better with its PS5 iteration. The action title charts the adventures of Cal Kestis, a character who undergoes secret Jedi training amid the Empire's crackdown. With a motley crew, you journey to various known and new worlds, engaging in simple environmental puzzles and intense melee combat. On PS5, the game benefits from improved framerate and higher resolution, giving you the best picture possible while cutting through Stormtroopers with your customised lightsaber.
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.
Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 1 + 2 is a brilliant remake of two incredibly impactful games. The skateboarding series might have been scraping its knees for a while, but this new version puts it right on track, updating the PS1 classics to modern standards while keeping that old-school, arcadey magic alive. The PS5 version is a great update, too, enhancing the title with super smooth performance, 4K resolution, reduced loading, and some subtle usage of DualSense's features. If you're a long-time fan, this is pure joy.
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.
Control pushed the limits of the PS4, delivering an intense third-person romp — but a technically flawed one. This return trip to the unorthodox Old House feels much more at home on the PS5, however, and while there are some strange difficulty spikes, Remedy’s unique brand of shooting shines throughout much of this engrossing outing. The oppressive setting, unnerving enemies, and wonderfully eerie atmosphere really come to life on Sony's current-gen machine, offering much improved visuals and performance.
Bandai Namco went big budget with Tales of Arise, and delivered a fantastic action RPG. Taking place across a wide range of vibrant locations and boasting an endearing main cast of characters, there's an awful lot to like about the desperate adventures of Alphen. As you'd expect of the long running series, the real-time, combo-based combat is a highlight — but a twisting story also strings things along to great effect. For our gald, Tales of Arise is one of the PS5's strongest Japanese RPGs.
A sequel to superb detective thriller Judgment, Lost Judgment doesn't quite hit the dizzying highs of its predecessor in terms of storytelling and character development, but it's still a great action RPG. Packed with intense plot twists and carried by an excellent cast, Lost Judgment is a typical Yakuza-style thrill ride — but it's actually the ridiculous amount of impressively varied side content that drives Yagami's sophomore case. An expanded, satisfying combat system is worthy of note as well.
The headline PSVR2 launch title, Horizon Call of the Mountain is a completely new entry in Guerrilla’s imaginative post-apocalyptic universe. While the story can be difficult to follow, the gameplay – which revolves around high-rise platforming – is expertly executed, making you feel like an elite climber in an often hostile world. Beautiful, sprawling vistas and a genuinely jaw-dropping sense of scale combine for an action packed thrill ride that explores the rich potential of Sony’s new headset.
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.
A superhero game from Square Enix is enough for hardcore PlayStation players to proceed with caution after Marvel's Avengers, but developer Eidos Montreal has done Marvel's Guardians of the Galaxy proud with a faithful, funny, and thoroughly enjoyable campaign based on original storytelling. It's a meaty one too, lasting north of 20 hours. The characters of Drax, Groot, Rocket, and Gamora are just as you remember them from the Marvel movies, and even Star-Lord performs valiantly despite the lack of a Chris Pratt face scan. Combat is deep and engaging, exploration is limited but fun, and dialogue is top-notch.
41. Pavlov VR (PS5)
There have been a good few attempts to get a multiplayer shooter going on VR systems, but Pavlov VR has to be one of the better efforts. With a wide variety of weapons to wield and some highly entertaining modes, this game feels intuitive to play and is a great laugh with a few friends. The player count might be low compared to traditional console shooters, but this is an incredibly solid effort that really nails the basics.