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5 Toughest Puzzle Games on PlayStation 5

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toughest puzzle games on PlayStation 5

Puzzle games have always been a beloved genre among gamers, offering a unique combination of mental stimulation and entertainment. Some franchises, like Tetris and Candy Crush Saga, have appealed to millions of players worldwide. With the advent of Sony’s PlayStation 5, puzzle enthusiasts have been treated to a new generation of immersive and challenging experiences.

The consistent theme for all the puzzle games is that you must think and problem-solve, alone or with friends and family. I prefer games that test my critical thinking and strategic mind. Something that would turn my mind to finding the fitting solution. If you love such games, we’ve got you covered. We explore the toughest puzzle games on PlayStation 5, testing the limits of your problem-solving skills and pushing the boundaries of your imagination. Whether you are a fan of mind-bending visuals and complex narratives or enjoy the satisfaction of cracking intricate puzzles, these games offer many challenges that will test your skills.

5. Superliminal

Superliminal - PS5 Update Trailer | PS5 Games

Prepare to question your perception in Superliminal, a first-person game that bends reality. The game is based on forced perspective and optical illusions. Initially, the game was only available for Windows and Mac PCs. However, it has since been ported to consoles, with an updated PS5 version in November 2022. Puzzles in this game give you a sense of the unexpected. As a player, you navigate a series of dreamlike environments, manipulating objects based on your perspective and spatial awareness. You may need to change your perspective and think outside the box to arise from the dream.

As you progress, the game introduces some mind-challenging optical illusions and forces perspective puzzles that leave you scratching your head. It requires you to look closely at everything to find what you need. It is its surreal atmosphere, clever level design, and mind-bending mechanics that make it one of the most challenging games on the PS5.

4. The Pedestrian

The Pedestrian - Launch Trailer | PS5, PS4

The Pedestrian takes the concept of a puzzle platformer to new heights, quite literally. The name appears to be pretty straightforward, don’t you think? I think it is incredible how you can tell what the game entails just from the title.

As a player, you can control a two-dimensional stick figure, traversing through signs, buildings, and various urban environments. As you progress in the game, the puzzles become increasingly complex. Your character has to travel through a busy virtual city filled with road signs, traffic lights, and more. It, therefore, requires you to manipulate signs and objects in the environment to reach your destination.

The game, mainly on PS5, has a great application of haptic feedback. As such, anything the character does, whether jumping, walking, or climbing a ladder, is felt through the PS5 dual-sense controller. It, therefore, has an immersive experience. The game’s unique combination of environmental puzzles and platforming mechanics creates an intellectually stimulating experience, challenging players to think in unconventional ways.

3. Maquette

Maquette - Gameplay Walkthrough Trailer | PS4

Maquette is an intriguing puzzle game with a clever and unique mechanic. The game comes with a unique perspective on puzzle-solving as players explore a world within a world. Set within a looping, dollhouse-like environment, Maquette challenges players to manipulate the environment to solve complicated puzzles.  

The game is based on a couple, Michael and Kenzie, who met at a coffee shop. Maquette follows their journey as a couple, from when they formed a relationship to when they eventually split.

Generally, this is a game of scale, in which the setting is in a recursive world where worlds are within worlds. As such, every world contains a smaller version of itself. At the center of every level is a smaller model of your environment. You can remove an item, and a smaller version appears. You will discover new paths and solutions by interacting with objects and changing their sizes within different iterations of the world. The game’s thoughtful storytelling, stunning visuals, and mind-bending puzzles make it a must-play game.

2. Returnal

Returnal - Announcement Trailer | PS5

Developed by Housemarque, Returnal transforms roguelike gameplay into a third-person shooter where players fight to survive a hostile planet that changes with every death. You can instinctively switch between firing modes using a single adaptive trigger and return to action after dying. The game combines these elements with a surreal narrative and challenging puzzles. The game introduces a character, Selene, a stranded astronaut trapped in a never-ending cycle on an alien planet. As a player, you must navigate some treacherous environments and unravel the mystery of their existence. PS5’s immersive 3D audio brings the alien world to life around the player, which assists players in navigating intense positional combat.

While playing, you will encounter intricate puzzles that require quick thinking, reflexes, and an understanding of the game’s mechanics. Returnal’s dynamic world, unforgiving difficulty, and intense combat add a layer of challenge to an already complex and captivating experience.

1. The Witness

The Witness - Release Date Trailer | PS4

Developed by Jonathan Blow, the mastermind behind Braid, The Witness is one of the toughest puzzle games on PlayStation 5. The game takes players to a mysterious island filled with complicated line puzzles. It comes up on the list as the most challenging game I have ever played. When playing, you experience confusion, uncertainty, and mental exhaustion when trying to understand the game’s intricacies. At times, you may consider giving up. Unlike most puzzle games, it does not just make you feel intelligent; it begins by assuming you are brilliant.

The game’s island is mainly open from the start, leaving you free to wander between its puzzles and locales. With over 500 puzzles to solve, The Witness challenges you to uncover the island’s secrets by revealing complex puzzles virtually and intellectually. The game has an open-world nature, which challenges you to explore and get rewarded for your curiosity.

Some intrinsic knowledge may help you understand the puzzles in most cases. The Witness structure encourages learning at your own pace. The game introduces new ideas with elegance, never stating the rules outright or showing its full hand. Consequently, it gives you enough context, and you make the final leap yourself. As such, be prepared for mind-bending challenges that will test your observation skills, pattern recognition, and ability to think outside the box.

So, what's your take? Do you agree with our list of the toughest puzzle games on PlayStation 5? Are there more tough puzzle games on PlayStation 5? Do let us know over on our socials here.

Evans I. Karanja is a freelance writer who loves to write about anything technology. He is always on the lookout for interesting topics, and enjoys writing about video games, cryptocurrency and blockchain and more. When not writing, he can be found playing video games or watching F1.