Modern video game consoles are incredible machines, capable of powering the most impressive experiences the medium has ever seen. The PlayStation 4 is the most popular console of this generation by a long shot, which makes it easy to recommend. But knowing what you’ll need to get the most out of it can be tricky. Here’s the only guide you’ll when buying a PlayStation 4.
PlayStation 4 console
First, let’s look at the console itself. The PlayStation 4 comes with a controller, plus a game if you buy a bundle. You might as well, so our recommendation is a PlayStation 4 with The Last of Us Remastered, one of the best games on the platform. You can buy one here for $399.
To get an idea of the experiences your powerful new machine can provide, you’ll need some games. Luckily for you, the system is home to dozens and dozens of top-notch titles. Here are some of the best.
Grand Theft Auto V: One of the best, most fully realized games in years, Grand Theft Auto V follows three very different criminals as they work together to pull off heists, staying one step ahead of law enforcement the entire time. When you’re done with the campaign, you can hop online for a nearly endless supply of content that will keep you busy for months. If you haven’t played this game yet, experiencing it on PlayStation 4 is the way to do it. Buy it here.
The Last of Us Remastered: This game originally launched toward the end of the Playstation 3 era, but it has been gorgeously remastered for the PS4. It tells the tale of a man and a girl making their way across a shattered, post-apocalyptic America. The tone is bleak, but this game has some of the best writing, acting, and characterization of any game ever made. It’s the very definition of a must-have. If you didn’t grab this game bundled with the console, be sure to get your copy now.
Bloodborne: This game will break you down. But if you give it your all, it will build you back up stronger than ever. It’s set in a dark Victorian city whose streets are teeming with some of the most frightful creatures ever imagined. Your job is to explore the area and exterminate every enemy you find, including a host of towering, nightmarish bosses. Success is hard-won, but it’s all the sweeter for it. Buy Bloodborne here.
Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor: If only all licensed games were this good. Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor puts you in the shoes of a man whose family was killed by the armies of Sauron. That means you’re out for revenge against every orc tribe you can point a sword at. With silky smooth navigation and bone-crushing combat, this game delivers on every level. Pick it up here.
Rayman Legends: Not only is this colorful platformer incredibly fun to play and endlessly creative, but it’s also appropriate for gamers of all ages. No one outside of Nintendo is crafting such joyful 2-D platformers as this. Don’t let this game slip by. Add it to your collection here.
Diablo III Reaper of Souls: Ultimate Evil Edition: If you’re into hacking through enemies and grabbing up loot, then look no further: This is the definitive edition of Diablo III, the latest installment of the masterful series from Blizzard. This edition of the game comes with the all of the expansions built in, so you get an additional chapter in the story, a new Crusader character, and a level cap of 70 rather than 60. If you want to play Diablo III, this is the way to do it. Grab your copy now.
Every PlayStation 4 console comes with a single Dualshock 4 controller, but if you want to play with other people, you’re going to need some extra ones. Be sure to grab a few, because it’s never fun to leave your guests empty-handed. You can buy a white one here or a black one here.
PlayStation Network gift card
Of all the consoles on the market, the PlayStation 4 has the best collection of downloadable titles available, including Minecraft, Guacamelee, Shovel Knight, Bastion, and a whole lot more. To download games, you’ll want to stock up on PlayStation Network gift cards so your account never runs dry. Stock up here.
PlayStation Plus membership
To play PlayStation 4 online, you have to join PlayStation Plus. But that’s actually a good thing, because a PS Plus subscription gets you free PS4, PS3, and PS Vita games every month. Even if you only want to play a fraction of the games on offer, you’ll still get more than your money’s worth. You can learn more about the program here, or just buy a subscription here.
Sure, you could turn the volume down every time you have a late night gaming session, but you’d be better off with a wireless headset. Most reviewers agree that the best PlayStation 4 headset is actually Sony’s own PlayStation Gold Wireless Headset. It’s comfortable, cordless, convenient, and it offers crystal-clear 7.1 virtual surround sound. Plus, it works with the whole family of PlayStation devices. Buy yours now right here.