The PlayStation 4 generation is arguably over, and the PlayStation 5 is now available for purchase. However, the end of a console's life is probably the greatest time to play it: you have a huge library of games to pick from and tens of millions of people to play with all over the globe. The PS4 Games is no exception. As new favorites have come, we've updated our list, and we've limited ourselves to only 8 titles to push us to make difficult decisions while making sure we've covered all the basics. We hope you'll find something new or interesting here: the depth of the console's back catalog, as well as the huge, flashy exclusives, is what gives it its identity.
Bloodborne is a delectable nightmare of a game, with FromSoft adapting its concept to a wonderfully dark Lovecraftian universe full of terror and beauty in equal measure. It's a near relative of the Dark Souls series, but with its own distinct flavour: the action is more forceful, removing the turtling that many players depended on, and the narrative is more clear.
It's a heady combination, and probably director Hidetaka Miyazaki's best game yet; by the end of the generation, it'll be a toss-up between this and Breath of the Wild for the title of the best game.
2. The Last Guardian
The Last Guardian became a legendary beast in its own way after spending so much time in development and only sometimes breaking cover. But, in the end, this game was all we could have hoped for - and, although it's full of brilliant surprises, the way the narrative develops seems reassuringly familiar.
After nursing a wounded beast back to health, a kid and his beast travel through a large, nearly desolate country. This is as much a trip as it is a game, with dark grottos and spindly summits of sun-bleached stone. And it's a meditation on friendship, complicity, and the compassion we owe to the living creatures around us, as much as it's a trip.
Insomniac's Spider-Man is also Marvel's Spider-Man, and although there was no shortage of lavishly tooled action games in the summer of 2018, Peter Parker barely edges over Kratos in our opinion. The sense of liberation and enjoyment that this game evokes is palpable.
Spidey's Manhattan is a fantastic playground, as well as a place where some carefully constructed fan-service may be found. There are plenty of cameos and treasures, and the game's core combines combat and navigation - as well as characterization - in a manner that has never been better. What a fantastic game.
There are now a plethora of Yakuza games to select from, thanks to Sega's more passionate approach to localization in recent years, and Zero emerges as the best of the lot. It's the perfect introduction to this most brilliant of series, set in Tokyo and Osaka, and because it's a prequel, it excuses some of the excesses that Yakuza is known for, which are exaggerated to great effect here.
When you successfully complete a fight, cash showers across the screen, adding a layer of seediness to Yakuza's already sleazy world. It's fantastic, and it serves as a timely reminder that the Sega you once loved never really died.
5. God of War
It's a pity that this much more serious edition lacks some of the Harryhausen whimsy, but behind the somewhat worn father-and-son anguish lurks a game that hasn't forgotten how to combine ancient spectacle with slapping people about with terrible weaponry. Kratos himself is a wonder of this age of games, all sinew, and anguish, commanding the screen and owning the journey.
6. GTA 5
Rockstar's open-world games are tailor-made for the West Coast, with its diverse landscape, dangerously free spirits, and realism that is already several levels beyond parody.
GTA 5 is still an incredible work of art, with an island that seems hand-crafted down to the last meter of asphalt and three characters who will be difficult for the franchise to equal or even surpass. We now know that all of this comes at a high human cost in 2019.
7. Tetris Effect
Is it possible to improve on the perfect game? Maybe not, but you can definitely push it in new and fascinating ways, and Enhance excelled at this exercise in Tetris Effect.
It's a simple enough concept to grasp: on one hand, you have the traditional puzzler in all its splendor, and on the other, you have the rhythm action skills of the folks that gave you Rez, Child of Eden, and Lumines. Tetris Effect, however, manages to become so much more as a result of this combination; a meditation on life and love, or just the ultimate chill-out experience.
Oh, and if you try it on PlayStation VR, it's a whole other experience...
8. Gran Turismo Sport
The omens for Polyphony Digital's PlayStation 4 debut were not promising. After the wonderfully maximalist Gran Turismo 6 - a game that had you racing from the Mulsanne to the moon and apparently everywhere in between - it seemed like the system's car and track roster was severely lacking.
Gran Turismo gained a lot more than it lost, including a feeling of concentration, as driving specialists Polyphony set out to create a real racing game for the first time. It's essentially an accessible version of iRacing for consoles, and it's fantastic.
Gran Turismo Sport sees Polyphony regain its place at the top of the pack, despite the fact that the PlayStation 4 isn't short on fantastic racing games (a shout-out to Codemasters' outstanding F1 titles and Dirt Rally 2.0 in particular).