It’s time, my friends. The PlayStation 5 is here. At last, a reason to smile in 2020. Whether you picked yours up on release or you’re waiting to see if it’s worth it, you’ll probably want to know which games are worth playing.
If you’re not interested in knowing which games are worth playing, I’m not sure why you bought a game console, but it is not my place to judge. Anyway, the point is that we at TripleJump are happy to provide a public service by ranking every PlayStation 5 launch game from worst to best.
Contrary to what you may have assumed, I did not stay up all night blitzing through every game available for the new console. I have, however, carefully studied each game’s critical reception, and am therefore considered an expert.
The rules are similar to those from our Xbox Series X slash Xbox Series S list. Based on critical consensus, we will rank every PlayStation 5 launch game from worst to best. We’re counting all of the games released on disc, including rereleased PS4 games as long as they’re actually enhanced and don’t just run better by default.
We won’t be counting digital-only games unless they are properly enhanced versions of PS4 games that were previously available on disc. Things get a little more complicated when we define “launch games,” however.
The PlayStation 5 does not have a singular launch day. In some territories, it was November 12. In others, it was November 19. Rather than exclude the launch games specific to certain regions, we are considering all games that releasedbetween November 12 and November 19 to be launch games.
How’s that for an exciting intro to the video? I’m Ben and I'm Peter from TripleJump, and this is Every PlayStation 5 Launch Game Ranked from Worst to Best. #21: Godfall 62% (PlayStation 5) Did you know Godfall was the very first game confirmed for the PS5? Do you care? Probably not, but I thought it was interesting, so leave me alone.
The game is published by Gearbox, but it was developed by Counterplay Games, which is a name that is not quite as familiar. The team includes developers who worked on Bioshock Infinite, Horizon: Zero Dawn, and Overwatch, however, so there is a lot of talent behind Godfall.
Does it live up to the promise of that talent? No. Absolutely not. Sorry to burst your bubble but no. Critics slogged through its repetitive campaign and came out the other end begrudgingly pleased with its presentation and little else.
They complained of technical issues, repetitiveness, and dull environments. One outlet called its story “hilariously paper thin.” There may be fun to be had here, but there’s a lot more of it elsewhere.
#20: Warhammer: Chaosbane Slayer Edition 63% (PlayStation 4) Good news, PS5 owners. In addition to all of the great games from the previous generation that you’ll be able to play in upgraded versions, you can play a deeply disappointing hack-and-slash as well.
Warhammer: Chaosbane Slayer Edition is not without merit, but when compared to most of the games in the launch lineup, “not without merit” isn’t much of a recommendation. Critics were underwhelmed, citing a lack of variety in the gameplay, the enemies, and even the loot…which you’d think the developers would have prioritized, since loot is the entire point of the game.
Common descriptions included words like generic, forgettable, and repetitive. Even those who enjoyed it conceded that its design was outdated and a bit too familiar. If you are a fan of the series or the genre, by all means, pick it up, but don’t expect it to jump to the top of your list of favorites.
#19: NBA 2K21 68% (PlayStation 4) Sports, eh? Good old…sports. Gotta love those. NBA 2K21 comes to the PS5 at launch and thank the lord for that; I simply don’t know what I would have done without it.
Basketball men dribbling across a basketball court with basketballs in their basketball hands…really, what else could a person want? Alright, I admit, I am probably not this game’s target audience.
I don’t know the rules, or the terminology, or why the teams don’t just sit down and settle their differences through polite conversation. I do, however, know the game’s critical reception. And it wasn’t great.
Even the critics who liked it questioned its necessity, saying it’s not worth a purchase at full price and that there’s really no need to own it if you have NBA 2K20. Others complained of it being unbalanced, grindy, and irritatingly monetized.
Sports, eh? Can’t live with ‘em…can’t quite understand ‘em. #18: Maneater 68% (PlayStation 4) The thing about a shark is he’s got lifeless eyes. Black eyes. Like a doll's eyes. When he comes at ya, he doesn't even seem to be livin’.
.. ‘til he bites ya, and those black eyes roll over white and then…you wish you were playing a much better game. Or at least one that made you feel appropriately powerful. Maneater often feels less like you’re playing as a shark and more like you’re the chicken of the sea.
It’s not a terrible game – to be clear, there are no truly terrible games in the launch lineup for either new console – but it by no means lives up to its stellar concept of shark carnage. If you go into the game knowing that, and you therefore expect silly fun with some humorous narration from Chris Parnell, you may end up enjoying it.
#17: Watch Dogs: Legion 71% (PlayStation 4) Picture it: London, shrouded in misery. Now picture Watch Dogs: Legion! Haha. Satire. As a series, Watch Dogs has had its ups and downs. Or, more accurately, a down and an up.
Legion seemed at first like it might be the best of the batch by a long shot, but the critics were not entirely convinced. They weren’t sold on its driving mechanics and didn’t think the ability to recruit NPCs added as much as it could have.
So, basically, Watch Dogs didn’t live up to its own potential; pretty much the story of the entire series. As with the previous two games, there’s still a lot of fun to be had in spite of the flaws.
Hacking your way through the city and interfering with countless daily commutes is enjoyable enough, even if it suffers from the hollow-yet-overstuffed design of many recent Ubisoft games. #16: No Man’s Sky 71% (PlayStation 4) No Man’s Sky promised PS4 owners so much, and then thoroughly failed to live up to any of those promises.
Unlike most of the tragedies of 2016, however, this one actually got better. Hello Games spent years bringing No Man’s Sky closer to its original vision. It was an impressive comeback story, and it doesn’t seem to have stopped…comebacking.
In the game’s Next Generation update – GET IT? – PS5 players will be able to gather in groups of up to 32, build larger bases than ever before, and enjoy the marvels of haptic feedback as they kill and/or are killed by adorable flying robots.
All of this is, of course, on top of the expected visual and performance upgrades. Is any of that enough to attract new players? It’s hard to say, but exploring the infinite cosmos is not a bad way to break in your new console.
#15: Bugsnax 73% (PlayStation 5) What you see if you eat a brick of expired fudge, Bugsnax is a first-person adventure game starring critters that would be utterly terrifying if they weren’t so adorable.
The purpose of the game is notto snuggle up with them and scratch them behind the ears while they wag their tails like good boys – a huge missed opportunity, frankly – but rather to capture and document all of the different types.
So it’s cute and adorable and probably extremely tasty, but is it any good? Critics can’t quite agree on that. It’s been uniformly lauded for its premise and its charm, but a few of them consider its gameplay to be shallow and unappealing.
Others, of course, think it’s a grand old time, referring to it as both engrossing and unforgettable. Your personal feelings on the game may well come down to your particular tolerance for whimsy. If you like what you see, though, give it a shot.
#14: Observer: System Redux 77% (PlayStation 4) If you like your narratives mysterious, your plagues digital, and your futures dystopian, Observer: System Redux will be your feel-good launch game of choice.
It was well-received upon its initial release in 2017, with critics praising the writing and characterization, which is indeed where the game shines. Saying too much would rob it of some of its mystery, but if you think you’d enjoy hacking into the brains of murder victims to solve cases and figure out what the heck is happening in general, you’ll find a lot to like.
There are plenty of spookems along the way, but Observer: System Redux is more “haunting” than it is “actively frightening.” It stars RutgerHauer, which is appropriate as it pulls more than a little inspiration from Blade Runner.
This enhanced version adds more cases to untangle, giving you an even greater dose of its unsettling reality. #13: Fortnite 78% (PlayStation 4) Only days before the PS5 launched, this unexpected game seemed to come out of nowhere.
It was a complete surprise, and I couldn’t wait to learn what it was. After doing some research, however, I found out that it has an active player base larger than the population of Earth. Who would have guessed? Okay, I’m kidding, but only because there’s nothing I can say about Fortnite that you haven’t heard already.
And, frankly, you already know whether you enjoy it or wish you’d never hear the word again. The battle-royale juggernaut is seeking to continue its domination into the next generation, and the odds are good it will be able to.
There haven’t been many true threats to its status as king of the genre, and as long as it keeps giving players the addictive, nail-biting panic they understandably crave – and the ridiculous costumes they also crave for less-understandable reasons – it’s liable to keep going strong.
#12: Sackboy: A Big Adventure 78% (PlayStation 5) Sackboy: A Big Adventure sends the unfortunately named Sackboy on a big adventure. Not sure where they got the title, but I suppose it’s none of my business anyway.
This time around, the game is built around 3D platforming as opposed to the 2-ish-D games in the Little Big Planet series. It also introduces four-player co-op, which means you and three friends can be overcome by the game’s adorable charm at the exact same time.
Is it any good, though? Well, the answer is yes, even if it doesn’t go very far beyond that. Critics have referred to the game as lacking in imagination, which is a real kick in the pants for anyone picking it up due to their fondness for Little Big Planet.
On the whole it’s being received as a competent and enjoyable platformer, and that’s by no means a bad thing. But we can’t blame anyone who had higher hopes than that. #11: Borderlands 3 78% (PlayStation 4) If you haven’t played Borderlands 3, why not? I want you to march right into the comments below and explain yourself.
It’s okay, though, because you’ll have your chance to dive into the game on the PS5, and get mountains of cel-shaded viscera all over the inside of your beautiful new console. The game has overall been well received, but if you’ve played previous games in the series and haven’t enjoyed them, I don’t imagine Borderlands 3 would change your mind too much.
Critics indeed took issue with how little it pushed the series forward, but that was sort of the point; it’s a refinement of the formula rather than an enormous step in a new direction. If you have enjoyed the previous games or if you’ve had your interest piqued by the slaughter-happy gameplay loop, Borderlands 3 is worth picking up.
And if you do, I’ll forgive you for skipping it on the PS4. You’re welcome. #10: Dirt 5 81% (PlayStation 4) You know, every time I recklessly drive a vehicle across difficult terrain without any care for the safety of others or the consequences of my actions, I go to prison.
And yet in games like Dirt 5, it’s outright encouraged! Where is the justice in that? Anyway, Dirt 5 has the shortest title of any PS5 launch game, saving me loads of time as I type up this script. It’s an off-roading globe-trotting racer with events unfolding around the world and many, manyneck injuries.
There is a story mode which certainly provides a compelling reason to drive in circles as quickly as possible, but the real draw is the multiplayer and the fact that weather patterns and seasons affect the events in the game.
What I’m ultimately saying is that you won’t soontire of this racer. I’m not even sure if that pun works, so let’s neither of us dwell on it. #9: Assassin’s Creed Valhalla 81% (PlayStation 4) What’s your favorite thing about Assassin’s Creed? The lovingly recreated environments?The gorgeous vistas?The opportunity to drain various historical figures of their blood? Whatever it is, you’ll be sure to find it in Assassin’s Creed Valhalla.
Or, as we’re destined to call it in the future, “the one with the Vikings.” Ubisoft has attempted to shape the game around player choice, with enemies behaving differently depending on the skills the player has unlocked.
Is that enough to make the series feel fresh again? No, of course not; don’t be ridiculous. But is it fun? Overall, yes, but with the caveat that it’s still Assassin’s Creed. If you’ve abandoned the series several games ago because it all started to feel the same, Valhalla won’t cause you to reevaluate that stance.
If you’ve continued to enjoy the games, though, and you always wanted to see the series in a spangenhelm, Valhalla is the game for you. #8: The Pathless 82% (PlayStation 5) The Pathless is the latest release from Annapurna Interactive, which means if you don’t like the game, your friends will spend the rest of their lives assuring you that you just didn’t get it.
You take control of the Hunter, stuck on a cursed island. So wherever they held the Fyre Festival, I guess. You explore the area with your eagle friend, shooting things with your bow, solving environmental puzzles, and restoring light to obelisks, as you do.
It was developed by the team behind Abzû, and like that game The Pathless emphasizes the value of finding your own way forward. In other words, not providing a path. Leaving players…ah, I can’t think of the word.
Critics took issue with the fact that a number of the game’s puzzles grind the experience to a halt, but aside from that, they were quite taken, singling out the bosses and the atmosphere for particular praise.
#7: Mortal Kombat 11: Ultimate Edition 82% (PlayStation 4) The fighting game of choice for spinal-column enthusiasts, Mortal Kombat 11 is launching beside the PS5 with an Ultimate Edition. As you might guess, this includes all of the DLC the game has received since its original release, and being as Mortal Kombat 11 was still receiving DLC as recently as October, newcomers can expect a lot of content.
In all there are 37 characters available, and boy do they each look beautiful…inside and out. Mortal Kombat 11 continues the long-running franchise’s story and you will continue to ignore it because you’re more interested in removing people’s livers with your bare hands.
Depending on the platform, the previous-gen versions of the game consistently scored in the 80% to 90% range, with most of the criticisms coming from various performance issues. With the PS5’s superior processing power, that concern is moot.
Kill your friends today. #6: Astro’s Playroom 83% (PlayStation 5) A spinoff from the PS4 game we used to deafen fans in 2018, Astro’s Playroom is built into your PS5, so, really, it’s not a question of whether or not you should pick it up.
You own it and Sony will stalk you like the ghost from It Follows until you agree to play it. Astro’s Playroom follows the sleek little robot last seen in Astro Bot Rescue Mission as he…well, as he climbs around inside of your PS5.
I bet you thought it was just wires and circuits and other junk in there, but it’s really a wonderland of control gimmicks! It’s a great way of getting used to DualSense controller, featuring loads of playstation-specific references and levels – a ps I love you letter if you will – but does it have staying power? It’s essentially a free tech demo for a system you’ve already purchased after all.
It’s fun and it’s impressive, but we’re not sure how many people will be bothering with it even a week from now. #5: Planet Coaster: Console Edition 84% (PC) If you’re anything like me, you fantasize regularly about building an amusement park without any restrooms and laughing as the patrons dance around on one leg because they’re too polite to relieve themselves behind the Tilt-A-Whirl.
We’re in luck, friends; Planet Coaster: Console Edition is here to let us do just that, inflicting all manner of injustices upon unsuspecting park-goers who only wanted to enjoy a weekend out. Alternatively, you could play the game properly and try to make everybody happy, but what would be the point in that? Needless to say, the controls have been entirely revamped for the console release, and critics so far seem to be getting on with them pretty well.
There was also a large amount of content added to the original game, which is good as one of the few criticisms of the PC version was that there wasn’t quite enough room for customization. #4: Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales 85% (PlayStation 5) Building an entire game around one of the characters everybody hated playing as in Marvel’s Spider-Man might sound like a bad idea on paper, but now Miles actually has…you know…abilities, and he can do more than walk slowly and restart from checkpoints.
It was certainly one of our most anticipated games of the new generation. Fitting since we’re called Ben and Peter… Anyway, as you may have expected, Miles Morales doesn’t quite measure up to its predecessor, but beyond that it’s an excellent game, with even the least-impressed critics promising that it’s worth playing and that it manages to stand on its own merits.
The Ultimate Edition of Miles Morales also includes Marvel’s Spider-Man: Remastered, an updated version of the best Spider-Man game ever. Wait, since Miles Morales is out now, will we have to delete that list and remake it from scratch? That certainly seems like the only rational thing to do… #3: Call of Duty Black Ops: Cold War 86% (PlayStation 5) The first-person shooter best played while listening to 11 year olds dump obscenities into your ear, Call of Duty makes its inevitable jump to the new generation with Black Ops: Cold War.
It’s set in the 1980s with scenarios modeled after actual historical scenarios, as you might expect. You’ll play through each of them once and spend the rest of your natural life being shot to death in multiplayer.
Again, as you’d expect. Activision has announced that all of the game’s DLC will be free, and I am going to be very brave by saying that’s a good thing. They’ve also confirmed that they intend to find new ways to monetize the game down the line, and I retract my previous statement.
Critics are certainly enjoying it, however, heaping praise upon its narrative, its visuals, and what many of them are calling the series’ best zombie mode. #2: Devil May Cry 5: Special Edition 87% (PlayStation 5) Devil May Cry 5 was a big success among those who wanted Devil May Cry to be good again.
It released in 2019 to understandable acclaim, using the engine from Resident Evil 7. Fitting, as that game was also heralded as a return to form. Devil May Cry 5 was lauded for its variety, its art design, and even its narrative, which is saying something for a game about kicking people’s teeth out as spectacularly as possible.
The question is, does it offer anything new on the PS5? Actually, yes. In addition to running at 120 frames per second – a huge disappointment as I was really hoping for 126 frames per second – it adds a character, adds several modes, adds environments, and includes all of the DLC from the original release.
Critics praised the Special Edition for being the best version of one of the previous generation’s best games. So, yeah, it’s pretty good, I guess. #1: Demon’s Souls 93% (PlayStation 5) Known ‘round these parts as “the next eighteen months of Ben Potter’s life,” Demon’s Souls is a welcome remake of the 2009 original that launched a genre.
And don’t rush to the comments to tell me I forgot about King’s Field. You never played those games. Nobody played those games! Demon’s Souls was understandably a bit rougher in its design than the subsequent Dark Souls, but that arguably gave it a lot of its own charm and identity.
The remaster does its best to remain true to that game’s spirit while still…y’know…fixing it. It adjusts inventory limits, adds a Mirror Mode, enhances the character customization, and its Photo Mode even adds the ability to pause the game, which means we’ll be hearing for years about how that was both the best possible decision and the worst possible decision the developers could have made.
The critics adore it, with the lowest score at the time of writing being 90%. Does that mean you will love it, too? Of course not; the Soulsborne games are notoriously stubborn, and it’s quite possible Demon’s Souls won’t be your cup of tea.
If you were looking forward to it, though, you can rest assured that it’s not just a remake done exactly right, it’s the best launch game for your PS5. That brings the average score of the PlayStation 5’s launch lineup to 77.
62%. And there you have it, every PlayStation 5 launch game ranked from worst to best. Which game is your favorite? How disappointed were you by Godfall? Do you think Sony or Microsoft had the better launch this time around? You have to choose; that’s how the internet works.
Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.You can follow TripleJump on Twitter here, and while you’re at it, why not support the things you enjoy by having a look at our patreon. Finally, don’t for get to like the video, share it with your friends, and subscribe to the channel.
I’m Benand I’m Peterfrom TripleJump, and thanks for watching.