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These upcoming games are either true exclusives or console exclusives on PS4 and PS5.
Sony has a long history of fantastic exclusive games on its consoles, dating back all the way to the original PlayStation with games like Metal Gear Solid and Final Fantasy VII. That has continued for decades, and looking ahead to the rest of 2021 and beyond, there are a bunch of exciting exclusive or console-exclusive games coming to PS4 and PS5. A selection of the biggest upcoming PlayStation exclusives are also coming to PC–as are some of the biggest upcoming Xbox exclusives–but if you’re a console player, Sony’s systems will be the only way to enjoy them.
An online action game from Platinum Games and Nier producer Yosuke Saito, Babylon’s Fall isn’t what we were expecting–the initial teasers didn’t suggest it would be online–but the Medieval fantasy setting and flashy combat both look like they’ll deliver. It’s relatively new territory for Platinum, which is best known for single-player action games like Bayonetta and Nier: Automata, though it still seems to be playing to the studio’s hack-and-slash strengths. Babylon’s Fall will be available across PS4, PS5, and PC.
The original Final Fantasy VII was a massive game, and rather than remake the entire thing at once, Square Enix opted to release Final Fantasy VII Remake in smaller chapters. The first of these was released for PS4 back in 2020, with a PS5 upgrade releasing this past June. It’s unclear when the game’s next chapter will be out, but given some of the revelations at the end of the first part–it appears there could be some major story differences compared to the original version–it’s one of the most-anticipated upcoming PlayStation games. Given how far away it seems to be, it’ll likely skip PS4 and be a PS5 exclusive.
An expansion rather than a full game–but an important one nonetheless–Final Fantasy XIV: Endwalker is the upcoming chapter for one of the world’s biggest MMORPGs, and one that has received even more favorable attention since some players and streamers began abandoning World of Warcraft. The expansion includes the new Sage and Reaper jobs, a new playable race, several new areas and dungeons, new raids, and a new PvP mode. It’s another impressive-looking chapter in a game’s story that began with a disastrous launch and subsequent rebirth, but the game’s A Realm Reborn era has been going on for long enough that it’s easy to forget the earlier trainwreck even existed.
A return to a more medieval and fantasy-based setting after the modern Final Fantasy XV, the upcoming Final Fantasy XVI looks like it will lean heavily, and intentionally, into some of the tropes of the genre–its setting is described as “A Land Blessed in the Light of the Mothercrystals,” for crying out loud. However, it builds on this with a complex world made of several different factions and characters, and with the power of the PS5, it looks to be one of the most stunning games released on the system. It will have an action-oriented combat system once again, and it appears Devil May Cry 5 designer Ryota Suzuki is serving as battle director on the project, which should give everyone confidence.
A new console-exclusive action-adventure game from Square Enix, Forspoken sees protagonist Frey Holland transported from our world into a fantasy realm called Athia, where she’s given the power to soar through the air and cast powerful spells. It looks like a cross between the movement in a game like Marvel’s Spider-Man with a much more magical move-set, and given the fidelity of the trailers and the high-speed action we’ve seen thus far, it makes sense that the game will be only available on PS5 and PC. But Square Enix is certainly hoping for the game to be more than a tech demo for the system, as is the new internal studio Luminous Productions.
GhostWire: Tokyo is one of the most exciting upcoming games for PS5, as it’s a completely new experience for studio Tango Gameworks. The company, now owned by Microsoft but honoring an earlier timed exclusivity agreement, developed both The Evil Within games previously, but GhostWire is not a survival-horror game. Instead, it’s a paranormal action-adventure with spooky elements, played from a first-person perspective with a combat flow that resembles something like Dishonored. It remains to be seen if that combat can mesh with investigating supernatural occurrences, but Tango Gameworks has a knack for world-building and has already shown great improvement since the original The Evil Within launched.
The 2018 soft-reboot for God of War, which continued the story but radically overhauled the gameplay, was one of the best PS4 games. Sony’s Santa Monica Studio is certainly looking to match that quality with God of War: Ragnarok, a game that will wrap up the Norse storyline. We’ve only seen a glimpse of gameplay thus far, which will continue the brutal and more weighty attacks compared to the earlier games, and Kratos’ son Atreus will play a major role once again. Will Kratos be able to defeat Thor, the god of thunder, or will the once-disgraced demi-god finally be destroyed? Well, probably not, but we won’t know for sure until the game releases in 2022 on PS4 and PS5.
The Gran Turismo series has, for the most part, stuck to what it has done best over the years: highly realistic racing on tracks. That’s not changing with Gran Turismo 7, but it will be getting some big enhancements to help it feel like a modern racing simulator that can compete with the Forza series. A much more complex time and weather system will be detailed right down to the aerosol particles formed during storms, and you’ll be able to tweak your cars right down to the tiniest of changes. The campaign mode also returns, as does Gran Turismo Sport’s livery editor, and you’ll be sent all over the world for a diverse selection of races.
The long-awaited sequel to Guerrilla’s hit game Horizon: Zero Dawn was planned to release in 2021, but it is now arriving in 2022. Given the high bar set by its predecessor, that might be for the best. Horizon: Forbidden West, as the name suggests, see Aloy venturing into the western United States as she continues her journey of survival and discovery in a post-apocalyptic world overrun by dinosaur-like robots. Stealth, acrobatic traversal, and bow combat are at the heart of the franchise, and all look to be making their return in full force for the sequel. We’ll also likely get some more answers regarding some of the game’s more intriguing sci-fi questions. Five years is a long time to wait.
After years of waiting for a Spider-Man game that could match the inexplicably good movie tie-in game Spider-Man 2, Insomniac Games finally delivered with 2018’s Spider-Man. A full sequel, Marvel’s Spider-Man 2, is now in the works for a planned 2023 release, and it looks to take the series in a slightly darker direction. It will include both Peter Parker and Miles Morales, and the PS5-exclusive game will feature Venom as one of its villains. You can expect lots of high-flying web-swinging and ridiculous visual fidelity, and if it’s anything like the previous game, there will be a great photo mode to show off your favorite moments. We’re just hoping for another suit that lets you keep at least one cat in the backpack.
Speaking of cats, Stray is one of the most exciting games coming to PlayStation, and the console-exclusive (on PS4 and PS5) game really couldn’t get any more adorable if it tried. Playing as a cat trying to survive in a hostile world with clear cyberpunk influences, you’ll get to finally know what it’s like to be a cat. That means knocking stuff off ledges, sneaking and working your way into hiding spots, and using your kitty wits to keep yourself out of danger. It doesn’t have a firm release date yet, so you may need to take a few catnaps before it arrives, but it will be a glorious day when it does.
Perhaps the upcoming PlayStation game we know the least about, Wolverine is in development at Insomniac Games. It appears to be early days for the project, which was announced via a CG trailer earlier this fall, but we know very little about the project. Presumably, it will be an action-adventure game, as well, likely with a greater emphasis on Wolverine’s claws and healing factor, but it could also be a more brutal game than Spider-Man given the direction Logan took the character in film. We’ll have to wait and see, and it’s not clear yet when we’ll actually get our first look at Wolverine gameplay or a better understanding of what the gameplay will be.
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