The survival genre is rich with games that pit players against different enemies, including the elements. You’ll find plenty of them on the PC. Some of the best PlayStation survival games are ports of those titles. Our list includes options for gamers that love a challenge, whether it involves building a city on a frozen landscape or surviving in jungles or forests.
|Don’t Starve Mega Pack
|7 Days to Die
|Facepunch, Double Eleven
|The Fun Pimps
|The Fun Pimps
|June 9, 2021
|September 13, 2016
|October 11, 2019
|May 21, 2021
|November 6, 2018
|June 28, 2016
The Best PlayStation Survival Games
The PlayStation family has been around since 1994, and we’ve seen hundreds of millions of consoles launched since the first generation. We’ve seen even more games, from shooters to sports titles, including some memorable titles ported from the PC.
You’ll find a few titles on our list of the best PlayStation survival games, like Frost Punk and Green Hell. While there are around a dozen survival games across every generation of the PlayStation, some titles fell a little too far outside the genre for consideration. That means you won’t find Fallout 4 on our list or some titles like ARK, which you can play on any platform.
We chose six games that best represent the genre on the console and provide something different for everyone. Honorable mentions for the best survival game for PlayStations include Conan Exiles, This War of Mine, How to Survive, ARK, DayZ, The Flame in the Flood, and hybrids like Subnautica or Minecraft.
The jungle is where most humans would struggle to survive, despite what reality shows may lead you to believe. Gamers that think they could make it for a few days in that environment will love Green Hell, a hardcore survival game from Creepy Jar.
The hero of Green Hell is an anthropologist named Jake. He’s searching for his wife in the jungle, but you’ll need to survive to find her. While crafting and scavenging help, as the game’s environment changes, so does your mood. If you think finding your way through a dense jungle is challenging, try it when you’re hallucinating.
Crafting and building are straightforward in Green Hell. You have a smartwatch to help you keep track of your vitals or even remind you to nap. Story mode follows Jake, but Survival mode opens things up whether you want to play alone or with a friend. You can tweak settings, including difficulty and permadeath.
Green Hell is comparable to The Forest, another game on our list, although the gameplay sets these titles apart. The rainforest is your enemy in Green Hell, so the emphasis isn’t on combat – just survival. Sandbox multiplayer with up to 3 friends adds more depth to the game, campaign mode, and the Spirits of Amazonia update. There’s no physical version of this game on the PlayStation 4, but you can pick up Green Hell from the PlayStation Store as a digital download.
Don’t Starve Mega Pack
If there’s been one survival game that’s been universally praised regardless of the platform, it would be Don’t Starve. Klei Entertainment’s popular game is available on a dozen platforms, and the Mega Pack lets you enjoy everything the game has to offer.
When you fire up Don’t Starve and see the graphics, you know you’re in for something different. It has a cartoonishly creepy vibe inspired by Tim Burton and plenty of humor across the randomly generated world. Every day you stay alive, you’ll earn some XP, but death comes quickly in this game and is permanent unless you have special gear.
You’ll need to scavenge for supplies in Don’t Starve during the day. Time is your enemy, however, as things change quickly when night rolls around. Unless you have a light source, you will get attacked by Charlie.
Don’t let the cartoon style of Don’t Stave fool you, it’s a tough game that can sometimes be unforgiving. Sandbox is where people spend most of their time in the game, but there is an adventure mode with several chapters and loads of additional content. The Don’t’ Starve Mega Pack includes the main game along with Shipwrecked, Reign of Giants, and Don’t Stave Together, which brings multiplayer to the game.
Some survival games drop you into exotic locations with a few tools, while others have you struggle against monsters. Frostpunk is a hybrid that breathes new life into the genre, as it’s a city-building game at its core with hardcore survival elements.
You’re in charge of survivors trying to brace before the final freeze. You’ll need to constantly send citizens out for resources while keeping the coal-powered steam generator going. Buildings need heat, people need food, and your decisions directly impact the game.
Features like laws come into play as you progress in Frostpunk, which can increase labor but rile up your citizens. Faith and Order paths affect the endgame if you’re society can manage to make it that long. There is no multiplayer in Frostpunk, but the game features different scenarios and has a wealth of content available through DLC.
City building and survival games can be tough to pull off on consoles. 11-bit Studios managed the impossible when they brought Frostpunk to the PlayStation, as it’s an excellent port from top to bottom. Every mode and piece of DLC from the PC release is available, and you can even play Frostpunk on the PlayStation 5 and the PS4.
Survival horror games have always had a home on the PlayStation with traditional titles and games like Resident Evil. The Forest is an open-world game where you play a father on a quest to find his son – something that’s easier said than done.
The Forest is an open-world survival game with a storyline but no traditional missions. You progress through the game, looking for your son while trying to avoid the island’s natives. They have a taste for flesh and are smarter than they appear. These cannibalistic creatures of the forest can work to take you out with tactical maneuvers.
Enemies get more complex and hideous the deeper you go in The Forest. So, you’ll need to rely on your survival guide. From here, you can craft using scavenged supplies, set up a shelter, and access your building blueprints. You’ll want to have your base ready before nightfall because that’s when the mutants get hungry.
The world is creepy and feels alive, while the cannibal mutants would feel right at home in a film like The Hills Have Eyes. If you enjoy the game, you can continue the journey next year on the PC with a sequel called Sons of the Forest. You can pick up The Forest from the PlayStation Store.
If you’ve ever dreamed about surviving in a desolate world where everyone is against you, you’ll love Rust. Gamers have enjoyed the world since 2013, and the hardcore survival game finally made its way to consoles in 2021.
Want to raid bases with your friends? Rust lets you do that, and you can even take captives. It’s a unique game where you learn never to trust a stranger. Doing so could end in death or the removal of your hard-earned loot. Combat is tough, and so is holding onto your supplies in Rust.
Rust is a multiplayer online game, so there’s no campaign mode. NPCs and wild animals roam the open world along with 99 other players on full servers. Crafting and combat are solid, and you’ll also have to monitor your vitals closely. Radiation and exotic ammo like explosive rounds can be a serious concern.
One major drawback, in our opinion, aside from the fact everyone wants to kill you, are the controls, which can be challenging compared to the PC version.
7 Days to Die
Billed as a “Survival Horror Crafting” game, 7 Days to Die has been available on PC for close to a decade. The game finally arrived on the Xbox One and PlayStation 4 in 2016 and brought loads of zombies and infected animals along for the ride.
Zombies are your nemesis in 7 Days to Die. They are hybrid zombies that take a classic slow-moving approach during the day but speed up considerably at night. You have seven days to survive and fortify your base before the Blood Moon appears. When that happens, an overwhelming force of zombies will attack, and you will quickly go down if unprepared
Crafting is an important part of 7 Days to Die for those reasons, but you also have to keep your player healthy. That means hunting for food and securing water while keeping illness at bay. It plays like a combination of Minecraft and a voxel-based State of Decay. The biggest difference is the timer for the Blood Moon, which adds pressure with each passing day.
Like Rust, the controls aren’t the best, but some of the early bugs that bothered gamers have been addressed in numerous patches. It’s still a bit rough around the edges, but well worth a look for the premise if you love zombies and split-screen couch co-op.
The image featured at the top of this post is ©iStock.com/Teamjackson.