Best First-Person Shooters on PlayStation 4 iMore 2021
First person shooter games allow you to enjoy the adrenaline rush of entering a room filled with enemies, or entering a firefight without ever having to worry about getting injured in the real world. It's a great way to blow off steam and there are some excellent games out there to choose from. Out of them all, the absolute best is Overwatch. This game blends excellent graphics and mechanics with dozens of characters to choose from and a variety of play modes to check out.
- Best Overall: Overwatch
- Best Value: Battlefield 1
- Best Story: Bioshock Collection
- Best Sequel: Wolfenstein II: New Colossus
- Best Single Player: Doom
- Most Anticipated: Borderlands 3
Best Overall: Overwatch
Overwatch, at its core, is a simple 6v6. It's an objective-based game that pits two online teams against one another, with a variety of different playable characters. Since it's arrival, it has delivered new play modes, new characters, and even new levels to run through and enjoy. With regular updates that don't require DLC, it's a game that keeps bringing in new content to keep content fresh for players.
There are several different levels, and all of them are gorgeous. The graphics bring this world to life whether you're running through a normal map or one of the seasonal variations that make an appearance during the holidays. Each character — and there are more than 20 to choose from — has a unique look and style, along with specific emotes, stickers, moves, strengths, and weaknesses.
There are several modes of play, depending on the match. The only catch to Overwatch is that there is no offline single-player mode. You'll always need a reliable connection to the internet, and you may be forced to join other players. Then again if you get five other friends to play, it's a great way to hang out without ever leaving home. Most gameplay is objective-based, which means a ridiculously fun free-for-all. The gameplay is entirely up to the two teams of players, and each generated level has a rule set for the match.
From top to bottom, Overwatch delivers the most fun you can have playing in a FPS on PlayStation 4. It has plenty of different ways to play thanks to a massive roster of characters, different modes to enjoy, and amazing graphics that never seem to get old. With all of this, it's no wonder it's still going strong years after its initial release date.
- Tons of characters with different play styles
- Great graphics
- Variety of play modes
- Online play only
- No single-player modes
Best Value: Battlefield 1
Battlefield returns to its roots bringing a high octane, large scale war game back to World War I. It brings a campaign that highlights the human aspects of the war to the forefront while also ensuring that its multiplayer mode performs with excellent new updates. The gameplay remains the chaotic free for all that so many veterans love while upping the ante.
Rather than have a campaign that is difficult to beat or enjoy, Battlefield 1 gives us a human look at war. Relatively simple objectives are paired up with those who were fighting and make you care about each story that you run through. One of the few issues is that some stories were drastically shorter than others, which made for weird pacing in places.
Multiplayer mode takes a different tact giving you the wide-scale madness that the game is known for. You've got access to a variety of weapons including pistols, SMGs, and LMGs. Each one is period-accurate which adds a certain heft to gameplay, especially since it means you'll need to learn how each one handles since they lack the super-precise targetting of modern weapons.
- Amazing graphics
- Awesome campaign and multiplayer modes
- Fantastic gameplay mechanics
- Long load times
- Campaign pacing is weird
Best Story: BioShock Collection
The BioShock Collection lets you return to Rapture, a city-based deep below the ocean and Columbia, a floating city high in the clouds. Over three games, you'll find out the truth behind both cities and what makes them tick. The BioShock games deliver great stories that combine high technology with a retro feel that no other game series has managed to recreate.
The first two BioShock games take place in the sunken city of Rapture where you'll be fighting past splicers as you try to unravel the mystery of what is going on with some questionable help along the way. BioShock Infinite brings you to Columbia where a different kind of mystery is brewing. Each game provides it's own story which connects to previous games, and opens up new characters, aspects, ideals and tragedies for you to discover.
All three games use a dual-wield system where you'll have a physical weapon in one hand and a specialty skill granted to you by Adam in the other. You'll run across a variety of different weapons including pistols, shotguns, traps and more, and most of them can are upgradable as you play. Instead of magic, you'll get special skills bought with Adam that will let you electrocute, throw fireballs, control machines, and plenty more. It's a good thing too because you'll need every trick in the book to survive what these games will throw at you.
- Atmospheric graphics
- Three great games in one package
- Awesome gameplay mechanics
- Lack of new content
- Game can be quite tricky at parts
Best Sequel: Wolfenstein II: New Colossus
In an alternate timeline, the Nazis won WWII and managed to turn America into a tacitly terrible place. Wolfenstein II: New Colossus drops you into the 1960s of this world as a member of the rebellion where your job is to kill the Nazis. Lots of them. The world is as much part of the story as the gameplay itself. You'll see the ruins of New York City, and a walled up remains of New Orleans. These locations, along with snippets of conversation and characters are what bring the world to life and make it far more entertaining to shoot your way through.
While you can use stealth mechanics to pick off officers one at a time, it's less amusing than the alternative. The combat in Wolfenstein II gives you options like dual-wielding weapons, and there are plenty of options. You can mix and match shotguns, pistols, machine guns, and more, and all of them have different customization options and upgrades. There's even a perk system that delivers upgrades for pulling off kills of a specific type.
- Terrifying world
- Excellent combat mechanics
- Fantastic acting throughout
- Invisible obstacles get in the way of movement
- Quick 14-hour campaign
Best Single Player: Doom
When demons overrun a research facility on Mars, you're left with one choice: shoot your way through and survive, killing one demon after another. You'll have access to a variety of different weapons including a shotgun, your pistol, and even the ability to tear demons limb from limb. Doom is a game that counts on you to keep moving as you mow through the enemies chasing you. Along the way, you'll grab up health packs, ammo, and other boosts to help keep you alive.
Keeping an eye on ammo and health isn't easy, but staggering demons does help. After an attack, you may see an enemy highlighted in blue or orange. Staggered enemies are open for a brutal attack letting you rend them limb from limb. It also gives you back some health and keeps you from using up all your ammo. It's a handy way to breathe for a second because Doom tends to lock you in a room until you've massacred the demons inside of it. That can get chaotic and frustrating quite quickly.
- Awesome graphics
- Fantastic shooting mechanics
- Great campaign to play through
- Gameplay becomes repetitive
Best Co-Op: Borderlands 3
Borderlands returns with a third installment, and this time Lillith needs your help to protect Sanctuary from a cult demanding citizens join them or die. This game delivers the fun, frenetic energy of the previous games and returns with more ridiculous guns, loot, and shenanigans. This time you'll be trying to stop the cult leading Calypso twins from harnessing the power of the vaults spread across the galaxy.
There are four new characters for you to choose from, and each of them has their own set of skills. Moze, the Gunner, seems to have an affinity with guns, and the ability to jump into a souped-up walking mech to mow through enemies. FL4K, the Beastmaster, can summon several small monsters that can leap and attack baddies. Zane Flynt, the Operative, seems to be successful in close range and can ghost walk through the things shooting at him to get a better angle. Last is Amara, the Siren, who appears to have an extra six arms she can use to pummel beasties and humanoid enemies alike.
Borderlands 3 has both a single-player and a co-op mode. This means you can start by playing by yourself and then team up online or on a local network. Borderlands becomes even more fun when you're playing with a friend. You can use strategy for taking down waves of enemies, have backup when dealing with boss battles, and you might also see better loot drops along the way.
- A new full-length borderlands game
- Four new characters to play
- More excellent guns and loot to collect
- Gameplay can become repetitive
Every game that made our list is fantastic, from old favorites like the Bioshock Collection up to highly anticipated new releases like Borderlands 3. While each game has its perks and style, Overwatch manages to beat them out for the #1 spot.
Overwatch delivers a great package that continues to give players new content without the added hassle of downloading new DLC. There are a variety of play modes, dozens of characters with their unique classes and skills, and all the fast-paced shooting action you could ask for. If what you crave is a good shoot 'em up, you don't need to look any further than this.
Credits — The team that worked on this guide
Jen Karner has been a gamer for more than twenty years and has spent countless hours fighting through Rapture and healing other players as Mercy. You can follow her on Twitter
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