With the PS5 approaching a year on the market, we have seen a strong start to the console’s life with multiple PlayStation Studios titles that have become some of the best PS5 games. Combine that with the offerings from both third-party and indie developers, which have helped diversify the console’s lineup, players have got a pretty strong library to choose from.
Games like Demon’s Souls and Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales made an impression in late 2020. But this year we have seen games utilise the DualSense controller in unique ways, leading to experiences like nothing else on any other console. All of this has meant that the PS5 has had one of the strongest launch line-ups in PlayStation history.
But what are the best PS5 games to play in 2021? We’ve compiled a list of our top games so far, but expect this to grow as more games are released for the console later this year.
Here are the best PS5 games:
- Astro’s Playroom
- Assassin’s Creed Valhalla
- Control: Ultimate Edition
- Demon’s Souls
- Dirt 5
- Disco Elysium: The Final Cut
- Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales
- Mortal Kombat 11: Ultimate
- Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart
- Sackboy: A Big Adventure
- The Pathless
Packaged in with the console itself, Astro’s Playroom on PS5 is a marvellous technical showcase that highlights just why the PS5 is a technical leap forward from the PS4. Showing off the tactile DualSense controller and what it is capable of, Astro’s Playroom also brings attention to features like the PS5’s Activity Cards, 3D Audio, and super speed SSD.
Easily one of the best baked-in titles ever released, Astro’s Playroom is a bitesize game that’ll keep you satisfied while you download the rest of the games on the list onto your shiny new console.
ASSASSIN’S CREED VALHALLA
The conclusion to the newest trilogy in the Assassin’s Creed franchise. Valhalla brought the franchise to England and placed us in the shoes of vikings for the first time.
With a sprawling open world and dozens of activities to complete that can take hundreds of hours, Assassin’s Creed Valhalla is one of the biggest Ubisoft open-worlds to date.
With extensive free post-launch support planned for the next fifteen months and an expansion already out on PS5, Ubisoft seems committed to expanding on Valhalla.
CONTROL: ULTIMATE EDITION
For the most part, you won’t see remasters on this list as this is a collection of the best games built for PS5, but Control: Ultimate Edition is a completely revitalised experience on Sony’s new console.
Devoid from the many technical issues it suffered on PS4 in 2019, Control on PS5 runs at either a 4K resolution, or a buttery smooth 60fps. Remedy has also implemented some game-changing DualSense support with Jessie’s footsteps being accurately reflected in the controller’s rumble.
Useful and informative activity cards, trophy tracking, excellent lighting upgrades and enhancements all around help round out a great package. The Ultimate Edition also comes bundled with the game’s two excellent expansions, which bring the worlds of Control and Alan Wake together.
In short, Control: Ultimate Edition is the game it could never quite be on PS4.
Bluepoint has quickly become a renowned PlayStation partner, following up its excellent Shadow of the Colossus remake with the restoration of the cult-classic Demon’s Souls for PS5.
Demon’s Souls, which was released alongside the PS5 in November 2020, was a dream come true for long-time FromSoftware fans, not only due to the fact it existed but because Bluepoint Games had done an excellent job of remaking the game.
Every inch of the kingdom of Boletaria has been masterfully recreated, with a few improvements here and there. Tighter controls, lightning refinements, and art-style changes now better match the atmosphere of the game.
Some aspects of the experience, like the difficulty, obtuse puzzles, and strange boss mechanics might not be for everyone, but Demon’s Souls is worth trying out, whether it is to see some gorgeous vistas or just in case it might be the first “souls” game that grabs you.
Racing games are surprisingly few and far between on the PS5. We are still waiting for Gran Turismo 7, which is due sometime in 2022, but in the meantime, the racing wizards at Codemasters have delivered a gritty and fun racer in the form of DiRT 5.
Utilising the DualSense controller to let you feel what it is like to drive over different terrain, DiRT 5 packs every rumble and roar of a car into its arcade racing experience, whether you are playing online or working your way through the many single-player events set across dozens of gorgeous tracks around the world.
DISCO ELYSIUM: THE FINAL CUT
Disco Elysium comes in as the first indie game on this list of the best PS5 games thanks to its incredible tabletop RPG gameplay, enthralling story, and an unparalleled sense of freedom.
This isn’t the type of game you see on consoles all that often. However, Disco Elysium has been ported over excellently by the ZAUM team, making the experience more approachable to those who have never played an RPG like this before.
Disco Elysium was a critical darling when it was first released on PC and it is without a doubt one of the best traditional pen-and-paper RPG experiences ever released on a console. The game also looks gorgeous thanks to its 4K resolution and delightful art style.
MARVEL’S SPIDER-MAN: MILES MORALES
Building upon the incredible Marvel’s Spider-Man, Insomniac Games elevated its gameplay and narrative storytelling with Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales.
Putting you in Miles Morales’ shoes as you live his day-to-day life, feeling his struggles and also his successes, Miles Morales advances the universe’s plotlines, while also being able to tell a heartfelt and engrossing story at the same time.
With Peter’s web-slinging powers and combat abilities imbued with his bio-electricity, Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales adds a pulse and beat to the moment-to-moment gameplay, whether it be swinging through New York or feeling Miles’ electricity-enhanced moves through the DualSense controller.
Miles Morales is a top-tier triple-A action-adventure and one of the best games Insomniac has ever made.
You’d be a fool to skip it on PS5.
MORTAL KOMBAT 11: ULTIMATE
Very few developers known for fighting games have the pedigree and prestige of NetherRealm. Still around after 29 years, Mortal Kombat 11 is its finest and most content-packed fighter to date.
With the complete original game and character roster, as well as the Aftermath story expansion, and all the Kombat Pack characters released since April 2019, Mortal Kombat 11 Ultimate is a pretty meaty package.
Add in the technical improvements offered on PS5 and you have a must-play game for Sony’s new console.
RATCHET & CLANK: RIFT APART
Bridging the gap between a technical showpiece for the PS5 and an enjoyable action-adventure for the whole family, Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart is a dazzling dash through dimensions that really shows what the PS5 is capable of.
The addition of Rivet gives the game a wider cast of characters to explore and the PS5’s SSD allows Insomniac to pull off some gameplay moments and set pieces that couldn’t have been done on the PS4.
Jaw-dropping vistas and levels, action-packed gameplay setpieces, and a wide variety of accessibility options makes Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart a great game no matter your age or experience with the franchise.
Are you a fan of Alien, Prometheus, and a little bit of Lovecraft? Well, if arcade, third-person shooters are also up your alley, then Returnal should be one of the first games you play on PS5.
Set on an alien planet and offering a deeply challenging, yet addictive roguelike gameplay loop, Housemarque brings their trademark arcade-action (which is just as good as it always is) and combines that with a narrative that remains intriguing and mysterious right to the very end.
Returnal also gets the accolade of having exemplary DualSense implementation with stunning haptic feedback.
Returnal might be the most hardcore and difficult game on this list, but don’t let it stop you from experiencing the new-gen features it has to offer.
SACKBOY: A BIG ADVENTURE
Sackboy: A Big Adventure does a fantastic job of reimagining the creation engine of Little Big Planet into a 3D platformer. It takes the tactile, papercraft world of the series and pieces together engrossing and engaging levels to tackle by yourself or in co-op with up to four players.
Fun for the whole family, but also an absolute joy to playthrough with friends, Sackboy brings out the heart of the titular character and also manages to feel like a true spiritual successor to Little Big Planet.
And, on PS5, it looks amazing, runs incredibly smooth, and is bolstered by some satisfying DualSense implementation and useful Activity Cards.
Built as an open-world adventure without checkboxes or waypoints, The Pathless is all about breathing in the open air and exploring at speed thanks to a momentum-based bow mechanic that has you rhythmically firing arrows at targets scattered around the environment.
You will jump across rivers and boost your way down a field all while taking on corrupted beasts and freeing them, collecting crystals along the way to upgrade your ability to glide.
The moment-to-moment feeling of parkouring your way across the open landscape of The Pathless to the beautiful soundtrack is what makes it special. And, almost a year into the console’s launch, it is still one of the best indie games on the system.
Warframe has been around for almost a decade now and it is stronger than it has ever been. With multiple expansions under its belt, a sprawling narrative with multiple arcs, a dedicated fan base, and the promise of cross-play and cross-progression later this year, Digital Extremes has done an incredible job at building up the MMO.
On PS5, the game is just as good as it is everywhere else but manages to finally reach its potential with a smooth frame rate and gorgeous enhanced visuals.
The best news is that the game is free-to-play so you can jump in and begin slaying enemies as soon as your PS5 arrives on your doorstep.
So there you have it, our full list of the best PS5 games out right now. Hopefully, you’ll have found a hidden gem to play this weekend or perhaps vindication for a game that you fell in love with. Either way, this list is proof that the PS5 has some of the best triple-A and indie games out there – and that’s something that should be celebrated.