Velocity 2X is everything that a game should be. Requiring skill and dedication, it's been built for core gamers ready to challenge themselves; for people who desperately miss the likes of Contra and R-Type. Don't be fooled, though, this isn't a throwback or even a celebration – this is a modern game done right, and the new standard for which indies have to aim on PlayStation.
The Last of Us Remastered was unlikely to be anything less than sublime, and that's the expected outcome that we've arrived at here. While its PS3 precursor prevents it from possessing the level of next-gen gloss that its native PS4 contemporaries contain, this is still a mighty fine looking title, and its framerate and resolution improvements only serve to solidify that. Of course, the onboard add-on packs and smattering of superfluous extras ensure that this is the definitive edition of an already outstanding affair – but, unsurprisingly, it's the touching tale at the heart of the package that once again sets it apart from its peers.
The sheer simplicity of flower makes it a difficult game not to fall in love with. It's a relaxing, calming, and curiously moving experience that has the power to change the way that you look at the outside world. Moreover, the improved motion sensors inside the DualShock 4 coupled with the enhanced horsepower of Sony's fresh hardware breathe new life into the experience, ensuring that this former PS3 favourite blossoms all over again on the PS4.
The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt sets a new standard for open world RPGs. Its shockingly cohesive world is as beautiful as it is demanding, and it's packed full of mature content that throws you from one emotional response to the next. Its storytelling is superb, its combat is grippingly refined, and its often unforgiving nature only lends itself to a brilliantly rewarding experience. In an industry that's flooded with so many by-the-book open world titles, Wild Hunt stands out as a true labour of love from a developer that's uncompromisingly passionate about its creative freedom. Geralt's incredible adventure is nothing short of a masterpiece.
Journey remains one of the most cohesive titles to grace PlayStation. A sumptuous art style and a stunning soundtrack fuse to create an experience that's flawless from start to finish. Its story never utters a word, yet it has more to say than most scripts, and its handling of social interaction eschews tradition in favour of eye-opening anonymous bonding. Enhanced visuals and a silky smooth framerate made possible courtesy of the PS4's power make this the definitive edition of the release, and put simply, Journey is still one of the greatest games ever made.
Persona 5 sets the benchmark for modern Japanese RPGs: it oozes style, charisma, and polish quite unlike anything we've played. With this fifth entry, the series' trademark formula of dungeon delving and socialising has been perfected. Addictive, engaging gameplay, incredibly endearing characters, and a consistently rewarding narrative loop combine to create a spectacularly cohesive whole – whether or not you're already a fan of Persona. A masterpiece from top to bottom.
A fitting end for one of PlayStation's most famous franchises, Uncharted 4: A Thief's End sits alongside The Last of Us at the apex of cinematic action experiences. Naughty Dog's ability to tell engaging tales is unmatched, with Nate's final chapter expertly balancing bombast against genuinely relatable themes. It won't redefine the genre quite like Uncharted 2, but the developer's boundless ambition means that this is a bigger, better, and more beautiful adventure than ever before.
Gorogoa is an immaculate puzzle game. Gorgeous art, beautiful but ominous ambient music, and mind-blowingly clever design combine for something special. It's a game like nothing we've ever played before, and with a modest run-time and low price-point to boot, you have no reason not to snag this outstanding experience.
An utterly engrossing slice of content, The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt – Hearts of Stone is a superb addition to an already incredible RPG, and is further proof that developer CD Projekt Red is at the absolute top of its game.
CD Projekt Red has released three masterpieces within the space of a year. Alongside Hearts of Stone, Blood and Wine ensures that The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt is, without question, the role-playing game to beat going forward. Toussaint provides a gorgeous new location that's a joy to explore, and the sun-soaked land houses enough engrossing content to put many fully priced retail releases to shame. Geralt's last hurrah is a pleasure to experience; a fitting end to a stunning achievement.