Top 5 PS4 launch games you must buy

The PlayStation is now available in the US - has been for over a week - and will soon reach other shores, including the UK. As will the entire launch line-up of 23 games, some of which will be available digitally and some from stores online and in the high street. In many cases, both.

So, contrary to some critical reports, there are plenty of titles to choose from on day one, each with their own merits. But what five should you most want to see popped in a Christmas stocking? Which of the initial wave of games floats more boats than the others?

READ: PlayStation 4 review

Resogun

£12.79

Of all of Sony's first-party titles available at launch, Resogun is perhaps the most fun and most accomplished. Basically a version of Defender for a more discerning gamesplayer, it has been developed by Housemarque, the same studio behind Super Stardust HD and you can tell with the explosive visuals and seemingly basic shoot-em-up premise.

However, its action is much more frantic than the old arcade game from which it takes inspiration, and the graphical flourishes are mesmerising. And what's more, Resogun is completely free to PS4 owners who also sign up for PlayStation Plus. And as you'll need the membership for multiplayer gaming, it seems like a bargain whichever way you look at it.

If you don't want to cough up £5.49 a month or £39.99 for a year's membership to PlayStation Plus, Resogun is also available separately.

READ: Resogun review

Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag

£57.99

In time for the UK release of the console, Ubisoft has updated its PS4 version of the free-running pirate simulation game from a 900p to 1080p resolution and you can really tell with the fine details on show.

Admittedly, the gameplay of the next-gen Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag is identical to the current-gen edition, but it just feels a bit more epic with more refined visuals. You'll might also find that, like us, there is so much to do in the game other than follow the main story that you'll spend hours if not days sailing the high seas and laying waste to English and Spanish warships.

Like all great games, it sucks you in and doesn't let go until you have finished every side quest as well as the main missions.

READ: Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag review (will soon be updated with next-gen details)

FIFA 14

£59.99

It's one of the pricier titles you can buy for the PlayStation 4 but the EA Ignite update to the hugely popular sports franchise is an absolutely essential purchase. If you like football that is.

Not only does it feature all of the great features that we love about the current-generation versions, but the next-gen refresh also adds dynamic crowds that are modelled in 3D rather than flat graphics, more control over each player, the ability for more players to get into a tangle at corners and a lot more.

Xbox 360 or PS3 owners need not be too jealous of their PS4-touting chums, but the tweaks do make a difference to gameplay for the better. It's also remarkably faster to load.

Lego Marvel Super Heroes

£52.99

If you are either a comic book or Lego fan, Lego Marvel Super Heroes will entertain you thoroughly. If you are both you will go giddy with excitement.

To be honest, more recent Lego platform games have been either a little samey or just dull. Batman 2 and Lego Lord of the Rings were both relative disappointments, with some wondering if there would be attempts at other similar games. We're glad that Telltale Games persevered though, as this one featuring just about every Marvel Super Hero from past and present is a real return to form.

The main reason for its inclusion in this list is because it does everything right for the genre that Sony's own Knack does wrong.

READ: Lego Marvel Super Heroes review

Need for Speed: Rivals

£59.99

Again a pricey inclusion, thanks to being one of Electronic Arts' launch games, but Need for Speed: Rivals has the honour of being the only real racing game available for the PS4 at launch.

That's not the only reason it's in our essential list though,  it's also huge fun and doesn't take itself seriously unlike Forza Motorsport 5 for that other console, whatever it's called.

It harks back to games like Burnout and the classic arcade racers, where everything whizzes past as a blur and the action is as important as staying on the track. It is fast and intense and, while the graphics aren't a massive step-up from the current-gen versions, there is plenty of detail thanks to the Frostbite 3 engine at work - the first time it's been used for a driving game.