We’ve all been there: you want to play a new game but don’t have the money. Or maybe you just want a new game without the commitment that buying one requires. Or maybe you just like free things, who doesn’t? No matter the case, these titles are great options if you’re feeling adventurous and want to try something new. The goal of this list is to focus on games that don’t normally come up in conversations about free-to-play games. I’ve tested over a dozen different free games in an effort to reduce the amount of time and hard drive space wasted on sub-par or overrated games. With no specific genre in mind, here are my picks for 5 of the best PlayStation titles that don’t cost a dime.
Vampire: The Masquerade – Blood Hunt (PS4/PS5)
A few years back, Paradox, the developers behind Vampire: the Masquerade started an initiative to allow more indie studios to create games using the cult classic IP. This multiplayer offering is one of the most recent. The full version released on PS5 in April of 2022, and has since maintained a small but comfortable player base. It’s a nice free third person multiplayer shooter with supernatural abilities and a wide selection of vampire classes to choose from. As a fan of Vampire: the Masquerade – Bloodlines, I have a decent time playing this game, especially on the more active weekend.
If you enjoy driving games, and sometimes wish you could play a game with tracks that go on forever, you may have found your match. You can race other players from around the world, challenge your friends locally, or build your own tracks while trying out other creations. Although I haven’t played a racing game in some time, Ubisoft’s Trackmania made it feel like riding a bike. I can’t remember the last time a racing game felt this fantastical. The free version keeps some modes locked, but there’s enough here to stay entertained either solo or with friends. This is a good choice for fans of the genre or those just looking to find a racing game with a vibe.
Anyone who remembers the 7th generation of games is definitely familiar with the term “Halo-Killer”, a term thrown around to label games like Killzone and Resistance. A term that also took away from what made those games enjoyable in their own right. And I can’t think of many people who aren’t also familiar with Valve’s Portal series. While Halo sort of shot itself in the foot without needing the help of Haze and Valve can’t count to three, 1047 Games made sure to fill a gap in the market. Splitgate is an entertaining multiplayer FPS that takes some of the best gameplay elements from both series and uses them well. It’s worth a quick download if you’re into FPS’s and multiplayer shooters in general.
Phantasy Star Online 2 New Genesis (PS4)
I would consider myself a casual Final Fantasy fan since long ago. I got my hands on FF8 when I was a young boy and played it up to the third disc, which was to messed up to function. That was enough to get me to try later entries and ultimately, led to me trying this game. I never had much experience with MMOs outside of RuneScape, and upon seeing the gorgeous graphics and the potential of this game, I know that may be about to change. I’m still green when it comes to this game, but I’m having an enjoyable time. For fans of JRPGs or MMOs, this free game may scratch an itch for you.
Platform fighters are becoming more common these days, and I’m all for it. Nickelodeon has the All-Star Brawl games, WB has the soon to be fully released Multi-Versus, and Blue Mammoth has Brawlhalla. Boasting over 50 characters and multiple crossovers and 8 player multiplayer (local included) Brawlhalla is a platform fighter that isn’t reinventing the wheel but it is playing heavy into its genre’s strengths. If you and your friends are struggling to find a good party game, this wouldn’t hurt to try. I’m definitely throwing it into my hang-out rotation.
These games would have either made my list redundant or they didn’t exactly fit the criteria I was going with, respectively. But they deserved to be on this list nonetheless!
The Finals (PS5)
Some of my favorite moments in the earlier days of online multiplayer was on Battlefield: Bad Company 2. The destruction was my favorite mechanic, hands down. Developed by ex-DICE employees, Embark’s 2023 title The Finals puts an emphasis on the destruction. I’ve won entire matches by having a team that knows how to use the environment. This game is a great example of what a dedicated team with a vision can do. You can read more about this game in our in-depth review!
Granblu Fantasy Versus: Rising (PS4/PS5)
While it’s not available by simply looking for the free games in the PS store, it still has a free version, so it deserves a place here. GBFV is a fun, fast paced anime fighter similar to the Guilty Gear games. While the free version only allows for 4 characters to be used, it does allow for online play with those characters. So if you get hooked and decide to stick with the game, you still don’t have to immediately buy the standard edition to engage in some friendly competition. That earns this game big bonus points in my book. If you’re a fan of fighting games, especially games like Guilty Gear or FighterZ, you will enjoy the hell out of this game.
In the age of the internet and free-to-play games, it’s nice to have choices. No matter the genre, there’s at least one free game out there that just may suit your fancy. There’s at least 150 games listed under free in the store, and with this list, hopefully I could help point you in the right direction. So get out there and give these games a chance. Worst thing that could happen is you have to delete it!