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The 20 best games on PlayStation 4

·6-min read

God of War

A majestic adventure across Norse mythology in the company of buttoned-up old god Kratos and his young son Atreus. Alongside jaw-dropping encounters and fights with the creatures, places and gods of the Norse canon, it unexpectedly has a lot to say about family dynamics and grief. The current high bar for action games.
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Horizon: Zero Dawn

A post-apocalyptic game that’s decidedly exciting, imagining a world in which robot dinosaurs have taken over the Earth and humans have once again become cave dwelling hunter-gatherers. Fighting the machines is great fun, as is getting around this fascinating world.
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Shadow of the Colossus

Combines astounding beauty with an understatedly profound story about grief, loss and power. In this game your task is to ride into a forsaken wilderness, find moss-covered ancient colossi and bring them down with a pathetic little sword and a bow – though it’s not long before you start to question your motivations.
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This electrifyingly scary horror-action game starts in a doomed Victorian-styled city and gets steadily more disturbing as you go on. Through exploring and fighting properly terrifying beasts, you slowly piece together what happened in this dreadful place. It is a challenge both for the reflexes and the intellect; there are no other games out there with this level of conceptual sophistication, except director Hidetaka Miyazaki’s other masterpiece, Dark Souls.
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Yakuza 0

A prequel to a long series of Japanese gangster soap operas that offers you the chance to beat up thugs in back alleys, sing karaoke and eat and endless selection of photorealistic food in Osaka restaurants. More accessible than any of the other Yakuza games thanks to the absence of convoluted backstory, Yakuza 0 is a unique, lovable combination of melodrama, fun and ridiculousness.

Persona 5

A group of teenagers form a small anarchist rebellion in Tokyo, studying and hanging out by day and delving into a parallel universe to do battle with the corrupt adults’ psyches by night. Enormously stylish, with a vibrant sense of place.
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The Witcher 3

Taking well-worn fantasy tropes and twisting them into something memorable and blackly comic, The Witcher 3 is an enormous, sprawling game in which everything nonetheless feels authored. A pinnacle for open-world role-playing games.
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What Remains of Edith Finch

Discover the sad tale of a very unfortunate family by exploring their abandoned home. This magic-realist story is short but profoundly affecting, grounding its flights of fancy in a relatable tale about family and the fear of living.
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Monster Hunter World

Mean-eyed dragons, amphibious leonine creatures, bat-like wyverns that puff themselves up like fluffy hamsters – Monster Hunter World’s creatures are amazing, and hunting them with a selection of overblown, cartoonish weapons is incredible fun. Enjoyable as much for the believable fictional ecology as the David-v-Goliath face-offs against enormous foes.
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Red Dead Redemption 2

A stubbornly slow-paced, obsessively detailed American epic, placing you in the spurred boots of outlaw Arthur Morgan in the dying days of the wild west. Its creators’ determination to immerse you in the incredible world it has created means that this is not the kind of game that slips down easy, but it is so lifelike, well-written and beautifully shot that it is well worth the time and attention it demands. A true landmark game.
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Tetris Effect

A hypnotic, psychedelic reimagining of the legendary puzzle game, adding reactive music and visual effects to, well, astonishing effect. Created by Tetsuya Mizuguchi, the mastermind behind puzzlers Rez and Lumines, its a transcendental experience, in which the familiar Tetris shapes drop into place over swooping deserts and mesmerising starscapes.
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The Last of Us 2

The brutal post-apocalyptic adventure continues, with troubled protagonists Ellie and Joel now part of a brittle community of survivors – until tragedy strikes. An emotionally bruising tale that brilliantly intertwines the violent trajectories of its lead characters, this is interactive storytelling at its most advanced – and most devastating.
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Blizzard’s brash and colourful interpretation of the multiplayer team-based shooter is a thrilling escapade, mixing varied, interesting character with excellent controls and vibrant sci-fi locations. Rewarding group tactics and intricate knowledge of character abilities over run-and-gun savagery, it’s a truly tactical blaster that provides euphoric moments of victory.
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When the makers of gorgeous handicraft platformer LittleBigPlanet set out to make a powerful creative tool for PlayStation owners, it was always going to be something special. And Dreams truly is incredible, allowing users to build whatever they want with its intuitive toolset, from games to animated movies to music videos, and then share the results online. Not sure what to build? Don’t worry; a large, friendly community has already made thousands of things to download, try out and be inspired by.
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Uncharted 4

The grand finale of the Indiana Jone-styled exploration adventure sees hero Nathan Drake confronting his past while trying to build a future with his wife Elena, far away from deadly quests for ancient artefacts. But first, there is one last globetrotting romp to enjoy, as Drake and Sully hunt for the treasure trove of legendary pirate Henry Avery. An unexpectedly emotional swashbuckler.
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Ghosts of Tsushima

The Mongol invasion of Tsushima island in the 13th century provides the historical backdrop for this visually arresting samurai epic from US studio Sucker Punch, a loving tribute to Japan’s cinematic tradition and natural beauty. The open world provides a spellbinding panorama and the sword-swishing combat is suitably bloody.
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Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain

The rollicking, ridiculous finale to Hideo Kojima’s epic stealth series gives us everything we expect from this convoluted odyssey, with psychotic villains, intense tactical engagements and dubiously attired female assassins. Even if Konami ever made another Metal Gear game, it would never capture the freedom and insanity of Kojima’s last stand.
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Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales

The incredible amount of work that developer Insomniac Games put into capturing the feel of web-slinging across the rooftops of NYC pays off again in this superlative superhero yarn. From the fizzy script to the fun set-piece battles and emotional showdowns, it’s like starring in your own Marvel movie – a dream realised for millions of fans.
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Assassin’s Creed Odyssey

Following vengeful mercenaries Kassandra and Alexios into a densely detailed evocation of Ancient Greece during the Peloponnesian War, Odyssey could be the pinnacle of Ubisoft’s time-spanning assassination series. The game offers hundreds of hours of open world exploration, a compelling narrative featuring cameos from all areas of Greek history and mythology, and even a non-violent tour mode for budding classical scholars.
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Resident Evil 7

After two disappointing, action-orientated instalments, Resident Evil 7 brought the series back to its tense, Romero-esque origins, switching the perspective to first-person and giving us an everyman hero trapped with a nightmarish red neck family. The jump scares and gross-out moments come thick and fast, and there’s even a VR mode for the truly brave/crazy.
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