We're coming up on the 2 year release of the PS4 (it seems longer than that, doesn't it?). And we thought it high time we celebrate the console and its games. The PlayStation 4 has a ton of games already, many of which are excellent - some even masterpieces, and we wanted to list the very best of the best. These highest rated PS4 games to date, as per Metacritic.
HD remasters and ports will not be counted. That means The Last of Us Remastered, God of War III, Guacameleee: Super Turbo Championship Edition, Fez, etc. will not make the list.
The reason behind this is simple, new games are more exciting. If we were to include those games, this list almost be entirely comprised of previously released games. That doesn't reflect the great games only on the PS4.
Additionally, when two or more games have the same critical score, which several of them do, we will rank them depending on the higher user score.
So without further ado, let's just dive in and bear witness to the 15 best games on the PlayStation 4 thus far!
Starting off the list is Axiom Verge, the latest in a long line of MetroidVania games, but Axiom Verge is arguably one of the most faithful to its inspirations.
You guide a confused scientist around an alien world in order to figure out where you are and what the heck happened. Axiom Verge is very reminiscent of Super Metroid, and shows that there is plenty of life left in the genre yet.
The exploration loop is incredibly satisfying, and combat feels both tight and adaptable, like a complex dance where the partners both accentuate each others strengths, allowing any weak points to fade into the background.
The game that surprised everyone in 2014, Shadow of Mordor deserves a place on any great next-gen games list. With a feature that truly screams "next-gen", Shadow of Mordor made a fairly bland story and world, extremely fun to play.
You play as Talion, a Ranger of Gondor, who is murdered alongside his family by Sauron and his minions. The basic plot sees you kill every Orc ten times over in your road to revenge. It's really as simple as that, but the gameplay, skill-tree, and much-touted Nemesis System, are the reasons you keep playing Shadow of Mordor for a long time.
It turns out that Shadow of Mordor is that rarest of things in video game culture - an unexpected knockout punch.
- The Guardian
As good as the core gameplay of the NBA 2K series is, the visual fidelity of the first PS4 version was what made it a must play - for everyone. Even if you aren't a fan of basketball, you should check the game out for the graphics alone.
Another really cool feature of the game, more frequently seen in the WWE series, is MyCareer Mode, which sees you create a player and play a story mode. The mode came equipped with cutscenes and even post-match interviews with real-life personalities. Needless to say, fans had never felt closer to being a real pro-baller.
...beyond impressive graphics NBA 2K14 keeps touching perfection in terms of gameplay, still as precise as ever, with a game experience still more satisfying due to the very well done AI. You still don't know what game to buy for your PS4 or your Xbox One? Think again.
- Jeux Actu
As a launch game, Battlefield 4 really showed what the PS4 and Xbox One were capable of. With the series' trademark online play that incorporates a fairly huge landscape, trucks, jeeps, jets, and "levolutions", Battlefield 4 set the bar for insane war games.
I'm sure you've seen them by now, but the levolutions are pretty amazing, from falling buildings to dams bursting. They dynamically change the gameplay and give you something to show your friends! The campaign leaves you wanting and the plethora of bugs/online issues were unacceptable, but for a first next-gen outing, this was impressive.
As the first game to demonstrate the prowess of the Frostbite 3 engine, its explosive debut indicates a promising future for its technology. Gear up and strap in, Battlefield 4 sets the new standard for next-generation multiplayer.
- Game Trailers
Here's a game you've probably never even heard of. I will say I'm still shocked that Super Mega Baseball is higher rated than any version of MLB The Show, although The Show '14 did rate at 83. That shows just how good this game is beneath it's cartoonish exterior.
Not so much about the realism of baseball as it is the sheer fun, Super Mega Baseball offers a jump-in mentality for those who aren't lovers or familiar with baseball, and surprisingly deep complexity for those who do.
Super Mega Baseball is one of the best baseball games out at the moment. Sure it may not be a licensed game like The Show, but the gameplay is as good as the official MLB game.
- The Sixth Axis
The latest installment in the Geometry Wars series, Dimensions is the best on PS4 and arguably the best of the series. The gameplay is tighter than ever, the color palette and soundtrack assault the senses, and online leaderboards make it addictive.
Geometry Wars 3: Dimensions is a multi-directional shooter that is as fun and chaotic as it is hypnotic and challenging. Though this kind of game might not be for everyone, if you are a fan you will love what Dimensions has to offer.
It offers plenty of things for all players, as the Adventure mode draws in new fans, the Classic mode appeals to veterans, and the leaderboards manage to fuel their competitive natures.
Far Cry 4 continued the insanity of the previous installment but took it to the Himalayan mountains. The story may not have been as good as that of Far Cry 3 but the same open-world traversal, combat, and quirkiness remained true to the series.
Paragliding over the hills of Kyrat, taking down outposts, finding masks and letters that shed light on the world, and shooting honey badgers with fire arrows is incredibly fun. And to be honest, if you don't like the sound of that then you wouldn't like Far Cry 4. Ubisoft created another great entry in the series and it's one of the best open-world games on PS4.
Far Cry 4 pounds out an open-world FPS maelstrom of ridiculousness. It’s always in your face and it’s never afraid to throw numerous and diverse dangers in your path, just to see if you can adapt and survive.
- PSX Extreme
Do you like fun? Then Rocket League is for you.
That's all I really need to say, but I will break it down a bit for anyone who doesn't know about the game or is on the fence. Rocket League is essentially football/soccer with cars. You drive, jump, boost, block, powerslide, and even climb walls in order to score the next all-important goal.
While the gameplay is where Rocket League excels, especially in online play, the customization of cars is also a ton of fun. You can choose from an array of chasses, patterns, colors, tires, jet streams, hats and flags. So the diversity of cars you see online makes it feel consistently fresh and exciting.
But to be honest, talking about the game can do it no justice. It's truly something you need to play for yourself to really get. And right now it's free on PS Plus, so join the 4 million others already playing Rocket League.
Rocket League is a pure videogame defined by an excellent mixture of its mechanics. It's extremely fun, addictive, one of the best competitive experiences of this year on PS4.
OlliOlli 2 is a skateboarding platformer that is equally frustrating and rewarding. Like its predecessor, OlliOlli 2 doesn't play like any other skateboarding game you've played. It's very tricky, no pun intended.
The second entry in the series takes the skateboarding from the mean streets to the "Olliwood" hills. You play a variety of cool locations, including some that look like they're right out of Guacamelee. The game is as difficult, if not more, than the original, and well worth picking up if you want something different or skateboard-related.
OlliOlli 2 may be incredibly difficult at times but it is also non stop fun. It takes everything that made the first game great and made it even better.
- Gaming Nexus
EA's classic football series debuted on the PS4 with the best entry to date. Fifa 14 brought the near-perfect gameplay that EA has mastered, tightened it even further, and enhanced the graphics. Compared to the series' debut on PS3, this was a real belter.
We all know what Fifa is and who it's for, so it doesn't take much extrapolation to explain why the series gets better with each entry. However, it's '14 that stands as the best football game on PS4 to date.
FIFA 14 exudes polish from every pore. It’s a great all-rounder, able to entertain players of all abilities.
Batman: Arkham Knight has been met with a lot of criticism since its release, and some of it well deserved. However, the criticism is resounding because expectations were so very high, and because we've already had 3 installments, the core gameplay that makes the series so fantastic is overlooked for Arkham Knight's flaws.
My point is, at its core, Arkham Knight is an amazing game. No one can argue that is a bad game. They may not like it or think it was disappointing, but the game itself is very good. The characters, world, graphics, and gameplay are all phenomenal. The Batmobile controls well and the tank mode similarly is very tight, though it can definitely be argued that it's overused and unbefitting of a Batman game.
Regardless, Arkham Knight is a great game and one of the best on the PS4. It may not have hit the game of the year highs that the previous two did, but it's still a testament to superhero games and world-building.
...any frustrations I have with Arkham Knight don’t take away from the fact that I was unable to stop playing for four days straight, frequently in awe.
- Hyper Magazine
BioWare breathed new life into the Dragon Age series with Inquisition. As a series that had been waning and never quite reached the heights of rival RPGs, Dragon Age finally reached its potential with the 2014 installment.
Dragon Age: Inquisiton is an incredibly dense fantasy RPG that took the open world genre to new heights with it's size, lore, characters, and world. Inquisition is easily one of the best RPGs on the PS4.
With a huge, breathtaking world, an epic story, and choices that leaves a significant mark on the world around you, Dragon Age: Inquisition embodies everything that makes the series so popular.
- Shack News
The ultimate love letter to old-school 2D platformers. Shovel Knight is the true evolution of classic games like Mega Man, CastleVania, or Ninja Gaiden. But it isn't a clone or a rip-off, it's its own entity - and a fantastic one at that.
Not only does Shovel Knight play like the perfect amalgamation of the games mentioned but it looks amazing, has an instant-classic soundtrack, and the PS4 version even features the God of War, Kratos. Shovel Knight begs to be played by gamers, young and old.
Whether you were weaned on an NES like I was, or don't yet know what you missed in a time before you were born, Shovel Knight is an absolute must-play.
Rarely has a game felt like such a descent into madness. That itself is the story of Bloodborne. You play as the silent Hunter, who travels around the town of Yharnam battling the residents-turned-monsters. The premise is simple, but the game gets more bizarre as the story unfolds, and you may find yourself going mad along with it.
Continuing the challenging template set forth by Demon Souls, From Software created a masterpiece with Bloodborne. Melding together everything that made the Souls games great, Bloodborne makes the action a little faster, adds a gun to parry with, and makes the monsters more than lumbering brutes.
Bloodborne takes the best of Dark Souls and builds the unrelenting gaming challenge on a prefect foundation - it will test your abilities to the max. The first true must-have exclusive for PS4 is here.
This should come as no surprise, because The Witcher 3 is the most breath-taking and immersive RPG ever created. Fun, interesting, beautiful, absolutely huge, and with things to do at every single point of the map, The Witcher 3 is exactly what we'd always wanted from a fantasy RPG.
You play as Geralt of Rivia on his last adventure, that of finding his loved ones and finally taking down the Wild Hunt. The premise is simple, but the characters make the main quest a delight to play through, and the plethora of side quests, all with an amazing diversity of characters and monsters, make this game hundreds of hours long, but interesting all the way.
Simply put, The Witcher 3 is the biggest and best game on PS4.
Its shockingly cohesive world is as beautiful as it is demanding, and it's packed full of mature content that throws you from one emotional response to the next. Its storytelling is superb, its combat is grippingly refined, and its often unforgiving nature only lends itself to a brilliantly rewarding experience.
- Push Square
So that's the lot! Of course there are many more awesome PS4 games - we never even fell beneath 84%! And that's not counting the PS3 ports and remasters, which help make the PS4's library more and more impressive.
The best thing about these 15 games is the impressive diversity on display. Last generation bore witness to the rise of digital games and the indie developer, and it's great to see that tradition is continuing and growing with the PS4. So we get games like Batman: Arkham Knight and The Witcher 3 on the same list as Shovel Knight and Rocket League. There's truly something for everyone on the PlayStation 4!
What games were you surprised to see, or not to see? Personally I thought Infamous: Second Son would have had a place in the top 15, and maybe Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare. And what games do you think will make the list in future? Uncharted 4 seems a no-brainer, but what else? Let us know in the comments!