The Independent’s journalism is supported by our readers. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn commission.

21 best PS5 games for every kind of player, from Elden Ring to Stray

From first-person shooters to open worlds, these are our favourite titles to play in 2022

<p>‘Horizon Forbidden West’ and ‘Gran Turismo 7’ are some of 2022’s biggest releases </p>

‘Horizon Forbidden West’ and ‘Gran Turismo 7’ are some of 2022’s biggest releases

The PS5 has been out since November 2020 and in that time there are a number of must-play titles that have been released.

It’s a testament to the strong first-party support that many of those games are exclusive to Playstation consoles with developers such as Guerilla, Insomniac and Polyphony Digital all falling under the “Playstation Studios” umbrella.

Because of the wavering availability of the elusive console, cross-platform support on both the PS4 and PS5 games may be very welcome indeed and plenty of previously released titles have been given the next-generation port, some of which are featured on our list. There’s even a chance that some of these games may appear on the updated PS Plus subscription tiers as an included title, such as Returnal and Stray.

Not only have some of these games received a visual upgrade with improved loading times, they’ve also made excellent use of the PS5’s additional hardware capabilities, such as dualsense controller support and storage optimisation for the SSD.

As even more exclusive titles make their way on to the PS5, such as the upcoming Forspoken or God of War: Ragnarok, then they will be added to this list if they are a worthwhile experience.

The best PS5 games in 2022 are:

‘Astro’s Playroom'

Best: Free game

  • Developer: Team ASOBI
  • Release date: 12 November 2020
  • Age rating: 7+

First appearing in The Playroom on the PS4 to showcase the console’s augmented reality capabilities and then later on in Astro Bot: Rescue Mission for the PS VR headset, Astro Bot has quickly become Playstation’s go-to mascot for their latest tech showcases.

Launching for free with every PS5 Astro’s Playroom is a delightful tech demo that puts all the new features of the latest Sony console to good use. Feeling the draw of a bowstring with the dualsense’s adaptive triggers or the patter of rain in its haptic feedback adds an extra layer of sensory immersion to gameplay and its super-fast loading times shows off what the PS5’s new SSD is capable of.

Not only is it a great tech demo, it’s also a really lovely homage to nearly three decades of Sony’s hardware, with collectible “artefacts” and references to previous generations of Playstation titles hidden around different levels. It’s a short experience at around four hours but it’s the first thing any PS5 owner should play to get a grasp of just how great their new console can be.

‘Elden Ring'

Best: Action RPG

  • Developer: FromSoftware
  • Release date: 25 February 2022
  • Age rating: 16+

Just when you think you’ve uncovered everything Elden Ring has to offer, it throws something new, jaw-dropping and challenging all in equal measure. It’s no wonder the game has become such a behemoth and has sold over 12m copies in less than a month.

Elden Ring offers plenty of challenges for players, while its improved combat mechanics and traversal provide ample opportunity for newcomers to get acquainted with the genre. If this is your first FromSoftware game and you relish a challenge, then there has never been a better time to jump in. If you’re already a veteran, then this perfects the formula of every FromSoftware title that came before it. This is gaming at its very best.

Read our full review of Elden Ring

‘Horizon Forbidden West'

Best: Open world

  • Developer: Guerilla Games
  • Release date: 18 February 2022
  • Age rating: 16+

In Horizon Forbidden West, Guerilla Games has developed its post-apocalyptic marriage of technology and nature to craft a beautifully realised vision of a world desperate for rebirth.

The story will take new players to unexpected and breathtaking places, and fans of the original, Horizon Zero Dawn, will have plenty of their questions answered.

It’s one of its most detailed, rich and fascinating depictions of a post-apocalyptic future, not to mention one of the PS5’s best-looking games to date.

Read our full review of Horizon Forbidden West

‘Sackboy: A Big Adventure'

Best: For kids

  • Developer: Sumo Digital
  • Release date: 12 November 2020
  • Age rating: 7+

Another Sony-favourite mascot is Sackboy from the LittleBigPlanet series, a button-eyed doll that acts as a customisable avatar for players to create their own levels. Now in Sackboy: A Big Adventure, he’s breaking the mould to star in his very first full-3D platformer.

Each level is lovingly realised, designed out of arts and crafts materials that can be explored by up to four players in local co-op. It’s a simple platformer but its star-studded cast and colourful presentation makes it a perfect adventure for friends and families.

‘It Takes Two'

Best: Co-op game

  • Developer: Hazelight
  • Release date: 26 March 2021
  • Age rating: 12+

Players must work together as either Cody or May to navigate through a series of different mechanics that tie into the themes of their marriage woes.

In one instance players will be changing the flow of time or cloning themselves before finding themselves navigating a boat down dangerous rapids. The amount of different genres It Takes Two throws at you is as expansive as the story is endearing.

‘Ratchet and Clank: Rift Apart'

Best: Platformer

  • Developer: Insomniac Games
  • Release date: 11 June 2021
  • Age rating: 7+

It was five years since we saw the Lombax and his robot companion returned in the Ratchet and Clank reboot and eight years since their last new entry into the series. Ratchet and Clank: Rift Apart wastes no time in throwing the duo back into the fray in a dimension-hopping adventure to stop Dr Nefarious from destroying the fabric of time and space.

The run-and-gun platforming action has changed very little since their first outing which is what makes Rift Apart feel so special in an age of hyper-realistic blockbusters.

With a wildly creative arsenal of new weapons and gorgeous graphics, Rift Apart is a powerful return to form and one of the Playstation 5’s best exclusive titles.

Read our full review of Ratchet and Clank: Rift Apart


Best: Roguelike

  • Developer: Housemarque
  • Release date: 30 April 2021
  • Age rating: 16+

Returnal was a divisive game when it came out as one of the PS5’s earliest exclusives. As a roguelike where levels are randomly generated, players take control of Selene as she crashes her spaceship on the planet Atropos. Every time she dies, time loops back to the point of impact and she must find a way to survive long enough and escape the planet.

Praised for its stunning visuals and fast-paced gameplay, it was also widely derided for its steep learning curve and reliance on random number generation. Players couldn’t even turn off their console mid-game in case they lost their progress and had to start from the beginning again.

A number of free updates have been put in place to alleviate some of these highly requested features, such as a suspend state and a photo mode. The latest update, titled “Ascension” also adds online co-op and a new endless mode brilliantly named “Tower of Sisyphus” so it’s an excellent time to revisit.


Best: First-person shooter

  • Developer: Arkane Studios
  • Release date: 14 September 2021
  • Age rating: 18+

LIke Arkane Studios’s other titles, Deathloop is a genre-bending mixture of stealth, role-play, first-person shooting all set in a stylish world. Players will control Colt Vahn, as he tries to escape Blackreef, an island populated by hedonists using a timeloop to host an endless party. Colt must eliminate eight visionaries in one day in order to break the loop and leave the island. Doing so requires learning the movement patterns of each character and finding the most efficient path to taking them all down in quick succession.

One of Deathloop’s unique twists is other players are able to invade your game as one of the eight visionaries, an assassin named Julianna, which adds an extra level of chaos to the proceedings as you navigate your route. It’s a colourful and cool first-person shooter that makes it one of the PS5’s most unique console exclusive titles.

‘Resident Evil Village'

Best: Horror

  • Developer: Capcom
  • Release date: 7 May 2021
  • Age rating: 18+

If Resident Evil 7: Biohazard could be described as a haunted house experience then Village could be fairly described as a rollercoaster. It might not be as traditionally scary as it sets off but its many twists and sudden drops make for a fast-paced adventure that will make you double take around every corner.

Players once again take control of Ethan Winters as he investigates a vaguely central-European town to find his kidnapped daughter. Among some of the residents of this town are a ten-foot vampire, a puppeteer and a giant fish creature.

Village also boasts one of the most absolutely terrifying sequences in the franchise’s long history of jump scares and buildups, which is saying a lot.

Read our full review of Resident Evil Village

‘Gran Turismo 7'

Best: Racing game

  • Developer: Polyphony Digital
  • Release date: 4 March 2022
  • Age rating: 3+

The most recent entry into the Gran Turismo series is a celebration of the game’s 25 year history with hundreds of cars to choose from over some of the most iconic locations featured in the series.

From its opening cinematic all the way to the granular detail of its descriptions of cars throughout automotive history, a clear love and expertise can be felt throughout. It may not play like an arcade racer such as Forza Horizon 5 but the sheer reverance for accuracy is well demonstrated.

Read our full review of Gran Turismo 7

‘Two Point Campus'

Best: Simulator

  • Developer: Two Point Studios
  • Release date: 9 August 2022
  • Age rating: 3+

Two Point Campus is the latest business management sim from Two Point Studios, that sees players build their dream universities and curriculums, from “Knight School” to a masters in “Internet History”.

In our review of Two Point Campus, we said: “It does well to play the class clown, but its deceptive enough to hide plenty of A-grade material under its desk.

“But beyond its off-kilter humour and (admittedly understandable) fixation on cheese-based snacks, Two Point Studios’s latest title is another successful case study in the exploration of classic simulators. It encapsulates everything that made Bullfrog Productions’ Theme series of the late nineties essential gaming, and continues to deliver that experience as a spiritual successor.”

‘Yakuza: Like a Dragon'

Best: RPG

  • Developer: Ryu Ga Gotoku Studio
  • Release date: 2 March 2021
  • Age rating: 18+

A soft reboot of the franchise after protagonist Kiryu’s story has concluded. Yakuza: Like a Dragon takes a bold decision to swap out its beat-em-up playstyle for a turn-based strategy game.

Like a Dragon follows new hero, Ichiban Kasuga, shortly after serving an 18-year prison sentence for a murder he did not commit only to be betrayed by his former boss upon his release. Ichiban decides to become a hero and teams up with other playable characters to clean up the streets, fight gangsters and sing karaoke.

Yakuza: Like a Dragon is a delightfully oddball take on the JRPG genre and new protagonist is a welcome addition to the franchise.

‘Control: Ultimate Edition'

Best: Third-person shooter

  • Developer: Remedy Entertainment
  • Release date: 2 February 2021
  • Age rating: 16+

Jesse Faden assumes the role of the Federal Bureau of Control’s new Director in the Oldest House, the Brutalist-inspired paranormal headquarters, as she tries to combat an enemy known as the “Hiss”.

As she explores the ever-changing halls of the HQ, Jesse will gain supernatural abilities that allow her to use enemies and the environment to her advantage.

It’s a surreal and complex third-person shooter that drips with retro-futurist style. Few other games look (or feel) quite like it.

‘Hitman 3'

Best: Stealth game

  • Developer: IO Interactive
  • Release date: 20 January 2021
  • Age rating: 18+

The final chapter in the “World of Assassination” storyline, Hitman 3 carries on agent 47’s globetrotting hit-spree. Each level ranges in explorability and difficulty, from towering skyscrapers in Dubai, murder mysteries inside an English country estate to warehouse raves in Berlin.

There are many different ways to assassinate each targets and Hitman 3 rewards players willing to explore every murderous avenue, by revisiting previous hits and finding new methods. It’s an incredibly nuanced action-stealth title that combines all of the best aspects of previous games.

Read our full review of Hitman 3

‘Demon’s Souls'

Best: Remaster

  • Developer: Bluepoint Games
  • Release date: 12 November 2020
  • Age rating: 18+

Built from the ground up, this remake of the genre-defining Demon’s Souls was one of the strongest offerings out of the launch titles available on the PS5.

There are some design elements that have started to show its age since it was first introduced in 2009 on the Playstation 3, such as the confusing “world tendency” mechanic, non-replenishing healing items and wildly varying boss difficulty. But the PS5 remaster from Bluepoint also makes plenty of quality of life improvements such as improved inventory management and superfast loading times that really make the most of the new hardware.

Not to mention, it’s still one of the best looking games available on the new console. It runs at a buttery 60fps consistently and the improved textures make it feel almost like a completely different game if you were to view them side-by-side.

If you’ve rolled through the open expanse of Elden Ring and are looking for another Souls-like to sink your teeth into, then this spiritual predecessor is the perfect follow up just to see where all the magic started.

‘Spider-Man: Miles Morales'

Best: Action

  • Developer: Insomniac Games
  • Release date: 12 November 2020
  • Age rating: 16+

Spider-Man on the PS4 was one of the console’s strongest entries and the follow-up Spider-Man: Miles Morales put us back into an open world Manhattan as Peter Parker’s protégé.

It’s not quite a sequel and comes in at a shorter time to complete but it offers plenty of new content with a focus on Harlem and some new villains as well as some extra powers like invisibility and bioelectricity.

Read our full review of Spider-Man: Miles Morales

‘Disco Elysium: The Final Cut'

Best: Mystery game

  • Developer: ZA/UM
  • Release date: 15 October 2019
  • Age rating: 18+

Waking up in a trashed motel room with a missing shoe, the world’s worst hangover and no memory of who you are is a dark way to start any game, until you realise you’re a detective who’s been sent to the city of Revachol to investigate a murder, then it gets darker. You must search the city for clues, speak to its citizens and put the pieces of your broken psyche back together in a poverty-stricken world where everybody has an ulterior motive. But first, you must find your shoe.

Disco Elysium harks back to classic role-playing games such as the first two Fallout games. It’s dense, text-heavy but within that it’s layered with depth and opportunities for multiple outcomes. You can play it old-school and solve all your problems with your fists or become an armchair philosopher, there’s really no wrong way to go about your detective work.

‘Guilty Gear Strive'

Best: Fighting game

  • Developer: Arc System Works
  • Release date: 11 June 2021
  • Age rating: 12+

Guilty Gear Strive is the 25th entry in the long running fighting game genre. But outside of Japan it has had a relatively small yet loyal following when compared to other franchises such as Street Fighter.

As far as fighting games go, it’s an incredibly sophisticated system of interlocking mechanics that give each of Strive’s fighters a careful balance of maneuverability and intensity. Increasingly complex combos and build ups can create “wall breaks” that launch opponents into new areas and “psych breaks” can also be used to throw opponents off their rhythm, giving newer players a chance to catch their breath and create some much needed distance.

That’s not to mention its immaculate presentation. Developed by Arc System Works, also known for Dragonball FighterZ, the cel-shaded visuals give each stage the appearance of a tightly choreographed anime showdown, only elevated by the relentless heavy metal soundtrack accompanying it. After 25 games, the story and characters may be convoluted enough to warrant a four hour cinematic (yes, you read that right) but by putting its gameplay first, Guilty Gear Strive gives players enough cause to go another bout.

‘FIFA 22'

Best: Football game

  • Developer: EA Sports
  • Release date: 27 September 2021
  • Age rating: 3+

With each new iteration of FIFA, EA Sports packs new features with each yearly installment and the most recent is no different. Boasting new “Hypermotion” technology for more realistic movement, FIFA 22 is one of the most visually impressive football titles yet. The overhaul to its career mode is also a welcome addition to the longstanding franchise and if you’re still eagerly awaiting FIFA 23, it’s an excellent time to pick up this title.


Best: For cat lovers

  • Publisher: Annapurna Interactive
  • Release date: 19 July 2022
  • Age rating: 12+

In our review of the game, we said that “assuming the role of a cat comes naturally. Stray is not just immersive for its controls, interfacing or animations, all of which help to sell the experience, but the way in which the world is constructed, with raised bars, narrow ledges and death-defying leaps that come naturally to our feline friends.

“With Stray, BlueTwelve Studios has created a memorable platforming experience with an emphasis on giving its stark setting the warmth of a human touch, or paw in this case.”

Read our full review of Stray to find out more


Best: Extreme sports

  • Publisher: Private Division
  • Release date: 16 August 2022
  • Age rating: 16+

It would be woefully simple to frame Rollerdrome as a kitschy homage to early Noughties titles like the Pro Skater series or Jet Set Radio at a glance. But in reality, it’s unlike any other sports game or third-person shooter out there. Despite everything it borrows, all of it feels fresh, rewarding and impossible to put down.

In our review, we said: “From its action to its slick presentation, everything about Rollerdrome screams “effortlessly cool” from the moment it ramps off. Its breakneck pacing and unabating stages make each victory feel well earned, and revisiting each feels like a mastery that verges on transcendental.

“It’s endlessly replayable and while its gradual difficulty demands a lot from players, none of it ever feels unfair, even in the face of overwhelming odds. Rollerdrome is another crack shot hit from Roll7 that will demand every ounce of your attention.”

Read our full review of Rollerdrome to find out more

The verdict: Best PS5 game

Astro’s Playroom is the first game you should ever boot up on your PS5. It’s a wonderful ode to some of Playstation’s best moments and manages to encapsulate every generation it’s been a part of in four generations.

For a more recent open world blockbuster, check out Horizon Forbidden West. It’s also available on the PS4 consoles but thanks to its stunning visuals and vast world filled with ruins and robotic dinosaurs, it’s an excellent showcase for the power of the PS5.

If you’re up for the challenge, Elden Ring is also well on track to be the best game to come out in 2022. It deserves its reputation as a difficult game but if you’re able to invest the time (and runes) into beating its numerous bosses, few gaming experiences are as rewarding.

Not sure which of the new consoles you should buy? Here’s our guide to choosing between the Xbox Series X and PlayStation 5

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in