Five games that justify PS5’s $750 price tag

Those lucky enough to buy a PlayStation 5 on launch day have had the console in their hands for a fortnight. 

Here are the five games that have impressed us and delivered on the promise of “next-generation.”

Astro’s Playroom should be the game everyone plays first. (Sony)

Don’t sleep on the game which comes free with every PlayStation 5. 

Astro’s Playroom should be the game everyone plays first, not for its undeniable charm and sharp platforming that rivals the likes of Super Mario, but as a sensational showcase of the PlayStation 5’s new DualSense controller.

Feeling the triggers tighten as you draw back on a bow or get ready to launch upward in a spring-based frog suit are two of many excellent examples of next-level immersion that wasn’t possible on old hardware. 

One level is enough to spark your imagination as to what might be possible over the next five years if developers truly embrace the feature.

The game is short but sweet and with every level and collectable tied to the history of PlayStation, it’s the perfect game to appreciate what’s come before and get excited about what could come next.

Call of Duty Black Ops: Cold War

The Call of Duty Black Ops Cold War campaign runs at 4K 60fps on Xbox Series X and PlayStation 5, 120fps in multiplayer
The Call of Duty Black Ops: Cold War game is already looking to be one of Sony’s top sellers. (Activision)

If Astro’s Playroom sells the wonder of the DualSense, Call of Duty proves it’s more than a gimmick. 

The classic multiplayer, zombies and warzone modes are all here but, in an unusual twist for Call of Duty, the campaign is the reason PlayStation 5 owners should buy Black Ops Cold War. 

Adaptive triggers are dialled to 11 during Call of Duty’s short four to six hour take on the Cold War era, which takes inspiration from recently declassified government files. 

Each weapon feels different on PlayStation 5. A pistol is lighter to lift than an AK-47, and the kick you feel from the right trigger while firing every round is mind-blowing. 

It’s something you can’t get on Xbox right now, and proof that PlayStation has done something truly special. 

Spider-Man: Miles Morales

Spider-Man Miles Morales
Spider-Man Miles Morales launched alongside the PlayStation 5. (Insomniac Games)

PlayStation’s heavy-hitting, big name exclusive at launch doesn’t disappoint. 

We were promised near non-existent load times on PS5 thanks to the new SSD and boy does Spider-Man: Miles Morales deliver.

Everything from the title screen to the game’s gorgeous cut-scenes and game play blend together seamlessly.

If you don’t die, fast travel or restart a challenge, there’s literally nothing between you and the game and even when you do, we’re talking one to five seconds until you’re right back in the action. 

What Insomniac Games have achieved is truly remarkable. 

The glory of ray-tracing (more accurate lighting and reflections) is on full display as you swing between Manhattan’s glass covered skyscrapers in ‘fidelity’ mode or you can lock the game to a buttery smooth 60 frames per second in ‘performance’ mode. 

The only disappointment is that you have to choose between the two. 

The graphics in NBA 2K21 are something to behold, with even the player’s sweat uncannily realistic.. (Sony)

There’s no better graphical showcase on PS5 right now than NBA 2K21. 

The game single-handedly sells this generation’s leap forward in a single trailer.

In practice, 2K’s best-in-class basketball game play and commentary is finally matched by lifelike visuals that are so close to the real thing, it can occasionally be disturbing. 

The players were always going to look great, but it’s the coaches, commentators, crowds and even the cheerleaders that makes this experience one to behold. 

2K21 is the first game I’ve been showing off to visiting friends.

We don’t even play, I just start a game, wait for someone to take a shot, pause and roam around in the instant replay mode to show off how sweat on a player’s forehead reflects light. 

If that’s not next-gen, I don’t know what is. 

Demon’s Souls is a high-stakes labyrinth where death could be waiting around every corner. (Sony)

Demon’s Souls wins the final spot on our list as both a visual showcase and the game to sell PlayStation’s much touted 3D audio and SSD load times.

In a high-stakes labyrinth where death could be waiting around every corner, wearing headphones and being immediately able to recognise the direction from which of a creak or the laboured breathing of an enemy is coming from is wonderfully immersive.

Fans of previous From Software games know the pain of death was made worse by one to two minute load times, but BluePoint’s remake gets you back into the action in seconds. Warping is also instantaneous. 

After experiencing it for yourself, you’ll never want to go back to the PS4 again.   

  • Assassin’s Creed Valhalla
  • Watch Dogs Legion
  • Sackboy: A Big Adventure
  • The Pathless
  • Devil May Cry V Special Edition

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