It’s time to wave those weird, glowing controllers around as we check out the best PlayStation Move games!
Motion control gaming was all the rage in the late 00s and early 10s, thanks to the immense success of Nintendo’s Wii console.
With everyone and their Grandmother joining in the fun of Wii Sports, the other console platform holders were keen to get in on the action.
Microsoft had their Kinect (which, with a lack of anything to hold at all, made you into the motion controller) and Sony released PlayStation Move, which used wand-like controllers, complete with slightly dubious-looking, glowing, spherical sensors.
The PlayStation Move had a surprisingly large amount of support, with plenty of original and exclusive games alongside familiar titles that supported the new control method.
Despite games such as Bioshock Infinite and Resident Evil 5 (which you’ll find in our list of the best PS3 games) supporting the PlayStation Move controller, we’ve narrowed our selection down to ten games which wouldn’t work without it; that is to say, games which had ‘PlayStation Move Required’ specified and couldn’t be played with a traditional controller at all.
Which were the best though? Let’s find out, as we check out the best PlayStation Move games!
Table of Contents
With Ape Escape having been the very first PlayStation game which required the use of the now-iconic DualShock controller on PS1 (and which you can now play on PS5 – check it out on our list of the best PS1 games on PS5), the series does have a history of making new or updated control methods compulsory.
There’s even an Ape Escape game that used the EyeToy, an early PlayStation camera peripheral, exclusively: EyeToy Monkey Mania!
However, PlayStation Move Ape Escape – as appealing as its charmingly cartoony visuals and fun, ape-based humour is – doesn’t quite hit the mark.
It’s an on-rails shooter that is a bit too simplistic and thin, content-wise, for its own good.
PlayStation Move Ape Escape is more successful than some other PlayStation Move-required games, but it’s a shame that it seems to have been a bit rushed in its development – resulting in an underwhelmingly short and basic experience.
Promising a crossover between three massive PlayStation franchises – Sly Cooper, Jak & Daxter and Ratchet & Clank, it might be surprising to see PlayStation Move Heroes only coming in at number ten on our list of the best PlayStation Move games.
Unfortunately, this overly ambitious action adventure did suffer from some issues – which explains its position on this list.
Despite a decent story and the appeal of featuring characters from three long running, beloved franchises, PlayStation Move Heroes does have problems with its controls, along with fairly repetitive gameplay and a sometimes awkward camera.
It’s far from a disaster, but at least you can now see why it didn’t place higher on the list of PlayStation Move games!
Not only is the Move motion controller needed to play Wonderbook: Book of Spells, but you’ll also need the curiously blank – aside from symbols and colours – ‘Wonderbook’ itself too.
That’s because the Wonderbook uses the PlayStation Eye camera to recreate the book in-game and on your TV using augmented reality; it’s simple and an oft-repeated trick, but it still manages to feel pretty magical in practice.
Especially as Book of Spells is essentially a spellcasting tutor set within the Harry Potter universe. Your PlayStation Move controller even shows up on-screen as a wand!
The wonderful music, charming voice acting and lovely visual design complement the excellent interactivity of Book of Spells – giving it a lovely sense of immersion and a whimsical ambience that strongly fits with the Harry Potter vibe.
It’s not strictly a game, but it’s a really fun toy as well as a pretty magical experience – so Book of Spells definitely deserves its place on the list of the best PlayStation Move games!
The title of The Shoot has a clever double meaning – not only is it a first person shooter game, but it’s also based around the filming (ie ‘shooting’ in film terms) of various movies.
The shooting element is handled really well, but other motions aren’t quite as nicely implemented – resulting in a slightly uneven experience.
That said, The Shoot features numerous clever references to plenty of Hollywood movies – and, unlike many on-rails, arcade-style shooting games, it’s family friendly too.
It certainly wasn’t a game that set the box office alight – and wasn’t exactly a AAA blockbuster in terms of content either – but The Shoot is a fun, if lightweight diversion for all ages.
You’d expect that the team behind early Move title Sports Champions (more on that – and its sequel – soon, if you keep reading!) would have a solid handle on PlayStation Move games; regardless of the subject matter.
On the evidence of Medieval Moves: Deadmund’s Quest, you’d be proven right.
Though fairly brief and linear, the implementation of the titular character’s equipment – sword, shield, bow and arrow – is absolutely sublime.
With highly addictive and immersive gameplay that sees you working your way through an on-rails medieval quest, this is one game that makes great use of the PlayStation Move peripheral to drop players right into the middle of the action.
Though short and lacking in replay value, Medieval Moves: Deadmund’s Quest is an absolute riot while it lasts.
The success of Nintendo’s Wii console was built on mini-game compilations that used the Wii Remotes in intuitive ways; the key to its popularity was the fact that this was a console even your grandparents could figure out and enjoy.
So despite Carnival Island garnering a less than stellar reception in the gaming press, this is a mini-game collection that ticks all the boxes when it comes to accessibility and fun.
Interestingly, there’s even a narrative that unfolds within the mini-game based action of Carnival Island; perhaps that’s not a surprise considering that God of War developers Sony Santa Monica were involved in the creation of the game!
Carnival Island features games such as Hoops, Ring Toss, Coin Flip, Bowls, Shooting Gallery, Frog Bog and Pitch; all based on real world stalls that you’d find at a fun fair or, yes, carnival. There’s a Magic Mirror to play around with too!
It has a surprisingly charming aesthetic and the Move controller implementation is superb for the vast majority of the mini-games on offer, making this a clear choice for one of the best PlayStation Move games!
One of the most ambitious Move-only titles in the PlayStation’s library, Sorcery removes the rails that seem to be necessary to shepherd players through other games, in favour of a much more open experience.
The usage of the Move controller is fantastic in Sorcery, with players needing to have quite a bit of skill in how they use the peripheral as their in-game wand.
With lots of areas to explore and an eight hour campaign, this is a much meatier experience than many Move games – and it’s definitely one of the few that hardcore gamers are likely to enjoy just as much as more casual players.
The only issue is that the camera can be a bit of a pain, but that aside, Sorcery is most definitely one of the best PlayStation Move games overall!
As previously mentioned, the Wii exploded in popularity thanks to its accessible, motion control-powered experiences – and there was perhaps no finer example of this than the original pack-in game, Wii Sports.
Naturally, when PlayStation Move launched, Sony had to ensure they could provide a competitor – which is where their Sports Champions games come into the picture.
This second collection of mini-games brings back Archery from the first game (and which developer Zindagi also used to brilliant effect in Medieval Moves: Deadmund’s Quest) and it remains a highlight here.
All other events are new to Sports Champions 2: Bowling, Golf, Boxing, Tennis and Skiing.
Only Tennis and Skiing let the package down, with the Move being unsuitable to the control methods employed – leading to some frustration.
However, everything else is brilliant.
Sports Champions 2 also has such a robust selection of content – including the single player Cup Mode for each event – that you’ll be happy to progress through the game alone, without even having to rope in your granny for a boxing match.
So this is where it all began for Playstation Move and its attempt to compete with the Wii on common ground.
Six events feature in the original Sports Champions and – as was the case in both Sports Champions 2 and Medieval Moves: Deadmund’s Quest – Archery is a clear highlight.
Fair play to development team Zindagi, who go out of their way to ensure they aren’t simply aping the Wii Sports template – the other events included are Bocce, Volleyball, Table Tennis, Disc Golf and even Gladiator Duel.
Just like its sequel, there’s an awful lot of content here too; plenty of variations and modes that’ll keep you busy even if you’re just playing on your lonesome.
It’s a brilliant use of the PlayStation Move peripheral and very nearly stole the top spot on our best PlayStation Move games list!
The results are in, the controllers have been swung, and Time Crisis: Razing Storm is officially the best PlayStation Move game!
Though not critically well received, the absence of arcade light gun games on modern consoles has created a gap and a massive yearning for the genre among contemporary gamers.
Modern TVs simply can’t work with light guns, so the options are thin on the ground these days for fans of this once thriving genre (take a look at our light gun games list to see our favourites!).
The Wii features numerous excellent light gun games, cleverly using the Wii remote (and plastic gun attachments if required, for extra immersion – check out our list of the best Nintendo Wii light gun games for more on that!), but the PS3’s Move controllers also provided a great way to bring the genre back to the home.
Time Crisis: Razing Storm isn’t just a port of the 2009 arcade title of the same name either – it also features ports of 2006 classic Time Crisis 4 and 2009’s brilliant arcade shooter Deadstorm Pirates.
In the humble opinion of us gamers at Retro Dodo, these three light gun shooters are a superb package and a great use of the PlayStation Move controllers – we’re big believers in the Time Crisis series; check out where the first game places on our list of the best arcade games!
So for us, it’s a no brainer to have the Time Crisis: Razing Storm compilation sitting proudly at the top of the best PlayStation Move games list!
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Jason – who lives in the UK – has had a lifelong interest in video games, which all started when he discovered Space Invaders in the early 80s. The first game he ever completed was Wonder Boy in Monster Land on the Sega Master System – which remains one of his proudest gaming achievements. Jason is a passionate writer – and has been writing about gaming since the late 90s. He currently runs pop culture blog midlifegamergeek.com, which he updates on a daily basis (and has written more than 700 articles on the blog alone!).
Outside of video games, Jason is a keen tabletop gamer, film buff and comic book fan.