What could you possibly buy for someone who’s already living in the future? If a special person you know has jumped into the world of 4K HDR gaming, first ask them if they are hiding the beast behind the TV. But after that, you can become an even better friend by getting them a PS5 gift this holiday season. The console itself is great, but there are still plenty of extras you can pick up to make your PS5 owner’s 2023 holiday season the best it can possibly be. To help you out, we’ve crafted a list of excellent PS5 holiday gift guide ideas for your favorite new console owner.
PS5 holiday gift guide
A fresh console generation isn’t the cheapest thing to buy accessories for. But if you’ve got a special someone to treat in your life, the PS5 gifts below will certainly put a smile on the face of anyone who managed to grab the next-gen device this year. Probably a much needed smile too if they’re still struggling through Elden Ring!
An extra DualSense controller
Those old DualShock 4 controllers may work for PS4 titles, but they aren’t supported for any new games on the PS5. For local multiplayer experiences like Overcooked: All You Can Eat and Sackboy: A Big Adventure, at least two Dualshocks are required. And given just how pricey to the PS5 is, there’s a good chance your gift target hasn’t grabbed an extra DualSense with it.
Since the PS5 launched, Sony has released a selection of far more attractive colors including Cosmos Red, Galactic Purple, and Starlight Blue, making them perfect (if pricey) gift choices. Buy one of these as a PS5 gift and you won’t just make the recipient happy, you’ll also be giving yourself a chance to enjoy the fancy new features alongside them. Haptic feedback and adaptive triggers when you game together? Heck yes.
And if you have picked up a second controller? The ChargePlay Duo docking station is an ideal companion. It'll keep two DualSense controllers secure at once, powering them up so they're ready for action whenever it's game time.
Cozy Co-Op: It Takes Two
If you've grabbed an extra controller above as a gift or if your target already has a second, it's time to make use of it. It Takes Two is one of the best co-op games in ages, showing an almost relentless ingenuity when it comes to gameplay styles and puzzle activities. The story is hit or miss, but the gameplay definitely shouldn't be missed. In great news, the PS4 version of the game comes with a free upgrade to improve the visuals and performance on PS5. Celebrating the holidays together? This is an ideal game to blast through in tandem.
Can't play in person? Don't worry! It Takes Two generously lets someone else join in the fun for free by downloading a temporary version of the game on their console. You can then link up with only one copy of the game between you for some online co-op action.
A quality headset: HyperX Cloud Stinger Core Wireless
If you hadn’t heard, 3D audio is a big deal on the PS5. It’s one of those features that, no matter how many times we explain it, really has to be experienced to be fully understood. As such, a quality gaming headset is all but essential for the PS5. Plus, if you happen to live with your gift recipient, a headset will stop all those late-night gaming sessions from keeping you awake at night. Provided they can keep their voice down, of course.
Our recommendation has to be the HyperX Cloud Stinger Core Wireless. Compatible with PC, PS4, and PS5, this comfortable headset throws wires out the window so that you can sit wherever you like in the room while playing and even keep conversations going when grabbing a snack from the fridge. And at under $100 it’s one of the most affordable wireless gaming headsets out there, without compromising on quality. Plus, if you pick the white edition, you’ll finally have something that actually matches the PS5 itself! The Cloud Stinger Core Wireless is available direct from HyperX here.
Check out all HyperX gear compatible with PlayStation consoles through this handy collection link.
An external harddrive for those gigantic games
The PS5 is in a bit of an odd space when it comes to storage right now. The SSD is lovely for rapid loading times, but it certainly isn’t huge. M.2 support has now been added, but installing extra storage is neither cheap, nor straightforward. If you want to get involved with upgrading the internal storage, we have a guide for that here. Be aware, however, that whoever is doing the upgrading will need to be comfortable opening up their console.
PS5 titles can't be installed on external hard drives as it could limit their loading speeds. What you could do instead, however, is dump all of those old PS4 titles on external storage space. That’ll keep the precious SSD free for the PS5 titles that need it.
To that end, an external hard drive is still a solid gift for anyone planning to play their PS4 catalogue on their new machine. Grab a 1TB or 2TB hard drive as a PS5 gift and your recipient shouldn’t need to worry about storage space for a good while to come. Well, not unless they’re planning on installing the behemoth that is Call of Duty: Warzone, of course.
New console covers or a spray paint set
The PS5 is an absolute unit, and there’s no denying that, to most people at least, it’s pretty ugly too. Fortunately, Sony now sells replacement Face Plates in much nicer color variants, including Midnight Black, Cosmic Red, Nova Pink, and more. They're not cheap, but how much is too much to stop the behemoth PS5 sticking out like a (very swollen) sore thumb beside your TV. Find them direct from PlayStation here.
If you’re looking for a more affordable way to help it fit in with your home decor and encourage your gift target to take some breaks from gaming, paint may be the answer. Those massive white face plates on the PS5 being detachable means you can pop them off and color them in any way you please. Use the PS5 as a chance to develop a new skill this year by painting them together with your gift guide. Just make sure you pick paints suitable for a plastic surface covered with PlayStation logos. Sony should start selling some offical paint sets, really.
A PlayStation Plus Extra or Premium subscription
Online subscriptions may seem like a bit of a cop out present, but there’s more reason than ever to gift one if your PS5 owner is a newcomer to the PlayStation space. The subscription service underwent a massive transformation this year, adding new tiers with game libraries akin to the Xbox Game Pass service. A PlayStation Plus Essential subscription will get them online, but the real gift value lies in the Extra and Premium tiers.
The PS Plus Extra library includes both PS4 and PS5 titles, letting your giftee enjoy titles like Ghost of Tsushima Director's Cut, Returnal, Deathloop, Chorus, Final Fantasy 7 Remake Intergrade, and so much more. The slightly pricier Premium tier, by comparison, is tailor made for longterm PlayStation fans. It packs is retro titles from the original PlayStation all the way up to PS3, and also opens up new game trials and streaming options as well. See the full Extra and Premium games library here for everything on offer.
Games that really show off the PS5's power
A couple years down the line and there still aren’t all too many titles out there that will really show off the new generation’s power. But if you want some game recommendations that’ll make the best PS5 gifts, these are our picks:
- Alan Wake 2: The latest release from Remedy isn't just a masterclass in intentionally bad storytelling from a hack horror author, it's also a fantastic showcase of the PS5's impressive ability to render lighting in particle effects in all their spooky majesty.
- Spider-Man 2: Miles and Peter's story continues in the incredibly moreish swingalong through NYC, this time including little bits of Queens and Brooklyn too. Marvel (heh) at the unbelievably fast speeds at which you can swap between them, and fast travelling to another borough in less time than it takes to scan a Metrocard.
- Horizon Forbidden West: Despite also releasing on PS4, Aloy's second outing is easily one of the best-looking games on PS5. It features seriously impressive facial animations for most conversations, and a staggeringly beautiful world to explore. If you're looking to gawp at incredible visuals, this should be your first stop.
- Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart: A true PS5 exclusive, Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart more than looks the part and comes with several interesting DualSense features too. While platforming through dimensions and facing the evil Dr. Nefarious, players will also get to know a new lombax star called Rivet.
- Elden Ring: Elden Ring isn't the shiniest looking game on the PS5, but with a map this massive, fast travelling around in an instant will feel like sweet relief after years of long load times on PS4. Plus, it's easily one of the greatest games of the generation, if they won't mind the challenge.
- The Callisto Protocol: Action horror fans are in for a treat here. The Callisto Protocol is set in a penal colony on Jupiter's crater-strewn moon, one in which a virus has transformed the majority of people into monstrous biophage creatures. Expect jump scares, gore, and monsters galore in this very violent new sci-fi story from one of the co-creators of Dead Space.
- Deathloop: Arcane's time-looping shooter is one of the coolest games of last year, and a brilliant showcase for the PS5's DualSense controller (here's why). It follows an assassin stuck in a repeating day on an island of gun-toting and partying cultists. The only way out is to kill eight targets in a single day and break the loop.
- God of War Ragnarok: Kratos and Atreus return for their second outing in Norse mythological legend. It may be another cross-gen game, but by goodness is it a gorgeous one. We recommend suggesting your giftee stick the game in performance mode to ensure the tight-knit combat is a smooth as silk.
- Returnal: Finally, if your gift target is a true glutton for punishment, look no further than Returnal. This brutally challenging roguelike asks players to battle through an aggressive alien world. Overcoming its regular foes is no easy task, let alone the brutally tough bosses. Die and it's right back to the start again. Tough but incredibly rewarding for those eager to best a challenge.
And that’s everything in our holiday gift guide for the PS5 owner in your life! If you’ve got any other great ideas, be sure to share them with us in the comments below. If you need gift ideas for an Xbox Series X/S owner, we've also got a list of suitable Xbox presents you can read here! Otherwise, click here for our full run of gaming holiday gift guides.