The best free-to-play games on PlayStation 4

Free-to-play games have become a massive part of modern gaming and PS4 has dozens of hugely popular titles that you can play without opening your wallet. Wondering where to start? Check out our essential guide.

 
 

Warframe

What is it?

A third-person, sci-fi action shooter where you play as a Tenno: a space ninja awoken from cryosleep to defend the Origin System. The game is both solo and co-op friendly, though much of the game is bettered by teamwork: work alongside friends to complete objectives, bring down bosses and take on ever-greater challenges.

Why should I play it?

Warframe is a unique experience, not only in the emphasis it places on movement, but in its sprawling procedurally-generated levels and the depths of its systems that allows players to fine-tune and hone their Warframes and Arsenal in extraordinary detail. 

Extra content to buy in-game

Warframes, Cosmetics and hundreds of other add-on items are available to purchase directly through the in-game store, though almost everything in the game can be earned through regular play.

World of Tanks: Mercenaries

What is it?

A massively-multiplayer, team-based online shooter where you take command of one of hundreds of tanks in an all-out battle for supremacy. Pick from a huge range of armoured vehicles that span the breadth of 20th-century conflict.

Why should I play it?

From large-scale military action experts WarGaming.net, World of Tanks: Mercenaries raises combat to a grand, theatre-of-war scale and boasts regular updates, seasonal events and new content to unlock throughout the year.

Extra content to buy in-game

World of Tanks’ in-game currency ‘Gold’ can be used to be purchase premium tanks, or buy time and experience boosters to speed up your progress.

 
 

Fortnite

Why should I play it?

Played by millions all over the world, Fortnite is the superstar of the battle royale genre wherein 100 players air drop into a huge, open-world arena and – working either in teams or alone – collect weapons, build shelters, requisition vehicles and keep fighting until only one player or team is left standing.

What is it?

Fortnite is an ever-evolving experience that changes not just across it's long-running seasons and chapters, but even from week to week. Developer Epic Games is dedicated to keeping the world of Fortnite fresh, fun and competitive, so every time you log in there's something new to discover, some new goodies to unlock or a new feature to play around with.

Extra content to buy in-game

Pick up V-Bucks in-game to customise your favourite players with new skins, emotes, gliders, sprays and more. Fortnite has masses of unique cosmetics to collect and over a hundred rewards to unlock each season as part of the Battle Pass add-on.

 
 

Dauntless

What is it?

Dauntless is a slick, co-operative-led experience wherein a group of Slayers must band together to bring down ‘Behemoths’ – the ferocious beasts that roam its massive, shared-world environment. Customise everything about your Slayer, from individual appearance and hairstyle to class, equipment and armour.

Why should I play it?

While many free-to-play games focus on competitive action, Dauntless brings players together with the common goal of taking down colossal beasts. What’s more, new Behemoths continue to be added as the developer expands the game. 

Extra content to buy in-game

With Dauntless’ special in-game currency, Platinum, you can buy new weapon and armour skins, emotes, banner customisations and more to build a truly bespoke beast Slayer.  

Brawlhalla

What is it?

A clever combination of platforming and fighting genres that pits players against one another across a range of modes and stages. Brought to life with charming 2D animation, it can be played both locally and online with friends, or can be tackled in single player mode for fighters who prefer to go it alone. 

Why should I play it?

Energetic and irreverent, Brawlhalla is deceptively deep and competitive, demanding team tactics and smart play to bring home a victory. It also benefits from regular updates and crossovers with big-name entertainment franchises like Hellboy, Adventure Time, Steven Universe and even WWE superstars like The Rock and John Cena.

Extra content to buy in-game

Unlock dozens of additional skins, special effects and nameplates for your characters and perfectly personalise your beatdowns with the game’s special in-game currency, Mammoth Coins. 

 
 

Neverwinter

What is it?

Set in the world of legendary table-top RPG Dungeons and Dragons, Neverwinter is a massively-multiplayer fantasy adventure played out in a sprawling overworld filled with hundreds of story quests and near-limitless character builds across classes, races, equipment and more.

Why should I play it?

Inspired by the RPG system that arguably started it all, Neverwinter brings to life the pen-and-paper experience on a vast scale, allowing you to role play your own adventure – either by yourself or with friends – like never before. Ongoing support continues to add new bosses, items, raids, areas to explore and story-driven quests.

Extra content to buy in-game

Zen, Neverwinter’s unique in-game currency, can be used to unlock a huge range of items and experience boosts for your characters. You can also buy bundled packs stuffed with items to kickstart your adventure. 

 
 

Paladins

What is it?

Join nine other players in a range of tightly designed combat arenas for a first-person, team-based showdown. Paladins boasts multiple game modes to master, dozens of characters to choose from, and a huge variety of weapons and playstyles to experiment with, from battering-ram bazookas to axe wielding tree-folk.

Why should I play it?

With 35 million active players worldwide, Paladins has a huge community of dedicated allies and opponents and masses of team-based strategy hardwired into its core design to make every match a nail-biting showdown.

Extra content to buy in-game

Grab a bundle of Paladins’ in-game currency, Crystals, to permanently unlock your favourite champions (you’ll have access to rotating roster of Champions for free) and customise them with special skins and cosmetics. 

Apex Legends

What is it?

Respawn Entertainment’s unique take on the battle royale genre fuses the multiplayer action of a massively-multiplayer online shooter with the science fiction lore of its Titanfall universe. The result is a fast-paced first-person shooter with larger-than-life heroes that pack a range of game-changing abilities.

Why should I play it?

Apex Legends takes a narrative-rich approach to its world and characters, painting each hero – and the game’s arenas - with detailed backstories that not only inform their personas but also drive the in-game action. What’s more, new heroes continue to join the roster.

Extra content to buy in-game

Customise your favourite characters with new skins and cosmetic extras, purchase the latest heroes added to the roster, or unlock seasonal tiers of additional content by picking up the battle pass. 

 
 

World of Warships: Legends

What is it?

From the team behind World of Tanks: Mercenaries, World of Warships: Legends places you at the helm of some of history’s greatest warships in a massively multiplayer online combat space. Upgrade your vessels, expand your crew and hire legendary naval commanders to lead them as you stake your claim for naval supremacy.

Why should I play it?

Filling a niche in the world of massively multiplayer online games, World of Warships: Legends combines a variety of challenges that include action, strategy and RPG systems to fully realise the tension of modern naval combat. 

Extra content to buy in-game

Purchase World of Warships’ in-game currency, Doubloons, to unlock new warships, boosters, containers, XP and extra Credits.

 
 

Warface

What is it?

Warface is realistic, free-to-play, tactical, first-person shooter in the mould of titans like Call of Duty and Rainbow Six. It features a huge range of classes, modes and weapons spread across both co-operative and competitive play modes, as well as several larger, story-driven missions.  

Why should I play it?

From the original studio behind the Far Cry and Crysis franchises, Warface is a no-brainer if you love tight, first-person shoot-outs, tactical team-play and competitive online skirmishes. New weapons and cosmetics are added each season, along with huge new areas to explore.

Extra content to buy in-game

Purchase Kredits in-game to unlock extra weapon and cosmetic bundles, as well as access seasonal battle passes which reward progress with new items to customise your loadout.

 
 

SMITE

What is it?

An accessible action strategy experience that is both easy to learn and difficult to master. Focusing solely on multiplayer, the gods of ancient mythology must do battle in a specially designed three-lane space where two teams of five battle to conquer the opposition.

Why should I play it?

SMITE is a great entry point to the MOBA genre that combines third-person combat with a lavish, colourful art-style and a roster of over 100 mythological deities from more than a dozen real-world pantheons. Expect regular updates that include new gods and skins.

Extra content to buy in-game

Unlock an even wider roster with the SMITE Ultimate God Pack, along with a range of other character cosmetics to buy in-game.