Best Free PS5 Games To Play In 2022
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If it isn't obvious already, video games aren't exactly cheap. With blockbuster titles slowly increasing to $70, that barrier to entry is one that people may struggle to afford. Fortunately, some games are available to own for the low price of nothing. There are plenty of great free-to-play games out there, creating worlds that get you instantly hooked and keep you entertained for hours before you're ready to consider spending a few dollars on a season pass or a flashy outfit for your avatar.
As for which free-to-play games are the best on the market when you've just acquired a fancy PlayStation 5 console? Tastes may differ, but the 10 examples below are worth considering if you're looking for some fun without breaking the bank.
In a market with a surplus of battle royale games, Apex Legends stands out as one of the best in the genre. Developer Respawn Entertainment's formula for success has been simple, as the studio translated its talent for satisfying shooter gunplay to a sandbox of lightning-fast action, a varied roster of characters to play with, and an emphasis on quality over quantity when it comes to content updates.
That recipe has been successful, resulting in a game with a surprisingly gentle learning curve, riveting moment-to-moment action, and easy communication between teammates no matter where you are in the world when you group up. With Respawn's proven track record for refinement keeping the momentum flowing smoothly since launch, Apex Legends stands as one of the most satisfying battle royale experiences you can have today.
One of the best games you can play on your PS5 console the second you take it out of its box is also one that you won't have to pay extra for. Pre-installed on each PS5, Astro's Playroom is perfect for getting a feel for what the console is capable of, as Team Asobo's delightful romp through PlayStation history is a DualSense showcase that everyone should try out. It sets the bar for immersion and how haptic feedback can add to a gaming experience, providing moments of pure hand-shaking excitement and subtle sensory feedback through the next-gen controller.
Astro's Playroom is also effortlessly charming to look at, an adorable and vibrant adventure that celebrates the legacy of PlayStation. Wonderfully fun to play, Astro's Playroom should be the first game that any PS5 owner tries.
If you've ever fancied seeing what all the fuss is about when it comes to fighting games inspired by Nintendo's Smash Bros. series--but you don't feel like dropping some cash to experiment with the genre--then Brawlhalla is well worth looking at. A free 2D platform fighting game that supports up to eight local or online players, Brawlhalla pits some of history's greatest warriors against each other in a legendary test of skill and strength, while also dropping a few handy weapons into the arena.
Capturing that Smash Bros. magic with its colorful visuals and fast-paced gameplay, Brawlhalla's eclectic roster also includes a regular number of crossovers with some of pop culture's greatest heroes and villains. Ever wanted to see WWE legends tangle with the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles? That weirdly-specific fantasy can come true in Brawlhalla, and with the game having superb netcode across PC, mobile, and console platforms, it'll be a smooth experience all the way through in any of its multiple modes.
Call of Duty: Warzone
Call of Duty was bound to enter the battle royale scene eventually, but few people could have predicted just how good Activision's take on the genre would be. Call of Duty: Warzone plays like a highlight reel of the entire series, condensing its tried-and-trusted gunplay into a fast and furious blast of fun on massive maps. It has a few other tricks up its sleeve as well that add a new spin to the battle royale formula--fancy a visit to the Gulag?--and has, since launch, slowly established a metaverse of crossover content that has helped keep its servers populated.
Dauntless has an unmistakable Monster Hunter energy to its design, but the game still makes an effort to feel like a distinct spin on Capcom's hit series. At its core, you'll be traveling to faraway lands, battling all manner of dangerous beasts, and using their remains to craft newer and more powerful gear for your hunter. Where Dauntless sets itself apart is through a terrific execution of its cross-platform multiplayer, unusual enemies to hunt down, and a surprising amount of content that's offered for free before you even start considering the value of its microtransactions.
Refreshingly accessible, the once-barren lands that it launched with have seen an increase in activity, making for a game that's worth a download if you're in the mood for some fantasy expeditions into strange new lands.
More than four years after it first launched, Destiny 2 has evolved into a cosmic sandbox of sci-fi action, seasonal storytelling, and gratifying gunplay. A live-service game with an astounding amount of content on offer, Destiny 2's gripping tale of Earth's greatest defenders exploring a hostile solar system that's filled with all manner of alien threats is further enhanced by its exceptional gameplay.
A mix of role-playing elements and thrilling action, Destiny 2 is superbly balanced and casts you as a Guardian who keeps dark armies at bay with exotic powers and an arsenal of wonderful toys. The specific seasonal live-service approach that Bungie adopted for Destiny 2 back in 2019 has proven to be one of the studio's best decisions, with the game pivoting to a model that allowed for engaging storytelling to unfold in the gaps between the release of major expansions. There's always something to do in Destiny 2, as this game provides one of the best power fantasies around without charging you a single cent.
Fortnite has become a cultural phenomenon over the years, and it's not hard to understand why when you see just how massive the game has become. Epic's battle royale was a smash-hit with fans who couldn't get enough of its last-player-standing action and the ability to build a luxury house around their avatars whenever they were in danger, and with all of that momentum behind it, Epic aimed for the stars.
That confidence saw Fortnite continue to grow, creating a game that has become a metaverse petri dish for experimentation, pop culture crossovers, and celebrity cameos. Some of the biggest events in entertainment have taken place within its digital borders, and with Epic showing no signs of slowing down as it continues to evolve the sandbox, Fortnite's next chapter of action looks set to be its biggest one yet.
What happens when you take two of the most universally loved creations of humanity--cars and soccer--and smash them together? You get Rocket League, automobile football that plays like a charm. Developer Psyonix knew it was onto something when it first released Supersonic Acrobatic Rocket-Powered Battle-Cars back in 2008, and by 2016, it was ready to return to the virtual pitch with Rocket League. In 2020, the studio finally decided to make Rocket League a free-to-play game, reinvigorating its audience and opening the doors for an influx of new players.
Currently, Rocket League is better than ever as its evergreen gameplay, constant fine-tuning, and universal appeal make for approachable fun.
For anyone who's tired of the usual military-themed shooters that seem to dominate the FPS genre, Splitgate is a nostalgic return to an age of sci-fi deathmatches in the same vein as Unreal Tournament, Halo, and Quake 3 Arena. Its real claim to fame, though, is its portal combat, as the run-and-gun gameplay is enhanced by a wrist-mounted gizmo that allows you to bend time and space by quickly ripping holes in the fabric of reality that you can travel and even shoot through.
Not just a useful tool for escaping from enemies, portals allow for some cunning moves to play out and once you adapt your tactics, you can quickly use them to outflank the opposition. Still in its infancy, Splitgate admittedly doesn't have much content available for players, but when its core gameplay is this good, you'll still have a solid time with it whenever you pop in for a few rounds.
There are three certainties in life, and that's death, taxes, and Warframe continuing to be a strange mix of rock-solid gameplay and an art direction that looks like Terry Gilliam's version of Star Wars. Warframe is one of the best value-for-money packages around, as the base version of this game offers an obscene amount of content and doesn't ask for a single cent in return. Microtransactions are present, of course, but these purchases feel meaningful in the grand scheme of things, and you can easily outfit your space ninja with terrific gear earned from regular play.
The future looks bright for Warframe, as its next story-driven expansion adds a new playable Warframe to the game called Caliban, essentially turning you into a spinning top of death. With constant updates like this, it's no wonder that Warframe is still going strong so many years after it first launched.