When you hear someone talking about “the biggest games on PlayStation 4 right now”, they’re usually referring to those with the grandest sense of scale, the big-budget money makers, or simply the new releases of the day that everybody’s talking about. But bigger isn’t always better, as “big” games can also be those which tend to leave behind an equally large footprint in your PlayStation 4’s hard drive, creating more frustration than fun as you desperately try to free up enough space just to get the cursed thing running. Modern industry practice means that both physical and digital copies of games will want an equally large place to stay in your PS4’s HDD, too, with discs increasingly acting as nothing more than the key for unlocking access to an application. And so, featured below, you’ll find some of the heftiest memory munching games currently available to install onto your PlayStation 4, if you think you’re up to the challenge.
Battlefield 4 Premium Edition - 71GB
Coming in at 31GB, the standard edition of Battlefield 4 is certainly substantial, but not ridiculously so. However, if you’re looking to pick up the premium edition of the game, which includes all five DLC packs plus every free update and map DICE has released over the last four years, you’re looking at a 71GB piece of software taking up its residence in your HDD. If you own a 500GB PS4, that’s almost a fifth of its hard drive for a single game, and a relatively old one too. Seeing as most Battlefield 4 players tend to play the fan favourite maps from the base game anyway (Siege of Shanghai 24/7 servers are still going strong on consoles), you may want to think long and hard before hitting the install button on this one.
The Elder Scrolls Online - 86GB
Zenimax managed to recreate the whole of Tamriel as one massively multiplayer, richly detailed shared universe, so the HDD clearance caveats were always going to be mega. But as a constantly evolving MMO, the Elder Scrolls Online has only continued to grow with age. The huge Homestead patch of February this year injected another 20 gigabytes into the proceedings, but that was only the start of it. The recently released Morrowind expansion, which adds an entire new region to the game, brought with it a lusty Argonian maid’s worth of memory, which is a lot to take on for the simple pleasures of indulging in Elder Scrolls 3 nostalgia.
Destiny: The Collection - 55 GB
No surprise here, for those who’ve spent any time as a Guardian in Bungie’s social sci-fi. Originally launching with an already mammoth install size of 40GB back in 2014, Destiny has only gotten bigger and better since then. Bigger being the operative word here. The infamous 18GB patch of 2015 wasn’t one of Destiny’s finest moments, for example. Three years down the line, though, and Bungie has managed to cram all of its DLC, updates, and extra content into one 55GB package, in the form of Destiny: The Collection. It’s a tempting offer, but at this point you might just want to save any ounce of free HDD space for Destiny 2, which I’m sure will release with equally ludicrous storage requirements.
Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 - 101GB
Congrats, Treyarch, you won. Black Ops 3, with its various map packs, patches and whatever else is hiding in all that code, wins the trophy for PS4’s biggest game. That’s not a good thing though. Over 100GB for a single game is absurd, especially for a first-person shooter which is neither the best looking, most operatic or content-packed of its kind. This does include the Zombie Chronicles collection, mind you, but that only accounts for 12 of the 101 gigabytes eating up all that valuable HDD space that could be used on so many other things. Hopefully Treyarch’s next Call of Duty game manages to either seriously justify its size, or take a lesson in memory management.
GTA 5 - 65GB
Ever wondered how Rockstar managed to make Los Santos appear both visually impressive, physically robust and geographically immense? The answer appears to be memory. Lots and lots of memory. Considering the detail, scale and endless entertainment value of Grand Theft Auto 5, at least you’ll know that all 65 gigabytes of the game are being put to good use by Rockstar. That said, it’s worth pointing out that, on PS4, Grand Theft Auto 5 is essentially a remaster of a last-gen title. One can therefore only imagine how Red Dead Redemption 2, Rockstar’s first full current-gen experience, is going to look in terms of raw data.
NBA 2K 17 - 55GB
Sports titles in general have always tended to be some of the biggest culprits when it comes to space-hoarding on consoles, with the likes of Fifa and Madden only getting bigger in size year after year, but it’s 2K’s annual basketball game that takes the cake for virtual volume. NBA 2K17 released with 50 gigs worth of baggage on PS4, and future updates and patches have only added an extra 7GB of supplementary software since then. As for what makes NBA the larger occupant compared to the rest of gaming’s sports showcase, that remains a mystery. Perhaps it's because all the character models are so much taller than average.
Read more: The best deals on PS4 hard drives
Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare - 95GB
The most recent iteration of Call of Duty takes its subtitle quite seriously, reaching for the stars with its ever-rising install size. Currently clocking in at 95 gigs with the three current map packs tacked on, there’s still a few more updates to come for Infinite Warfare, so Call of Duty enthusiasts can’t quite give their PS4’s a break just yet. It’s worse, of course, if you own the Legacy Edition of the game, which includes a digital edition of Modern Warfare Remastered, bringing the total up to over 130GB. Luckily, you don’t need to have Infinite Warfare installed in order to play Modern Warfare Remastered, just the disk inserted into your console.
Doom - 73GB
Shakespeare once wrote that Hell is empty, but I’m pretty certain he would’ve changed his mind had he ever gone through the trouble of installing Doom onto his PlayStation 4. Doom’s cast of demons, power-ups, and BFGs take up a whole ton of BFGBs, as the game demanded over 50 of them at launch in 2016. That wasn’t the end of it, though. Id Software’s season of post-launch content added another 25GB into the mix, bringing Doom’s round total of data to almost 75GB on PlayStation 4. Ouch.
Nier Automata - 49GB
I hope my PS4 isn’t ever capable of reaching the same level of sentience and emotional intelligence as Nier Automata’s robots, because it would probably start grumbling about indigestion from too much data. At just under 50GB, Takahisa Taura’s eccentric action-RPG treads the fine line between ridiculously big and unacceptably big, as I’d say every megabyte is worth it for a game that lets you fight atop speeding roller coasters, ride around on wild moose, and do battle with real-life Square Enix executives (yes, really). Automata is already one of the best games of 2017, making 49GB a forgivable prerequisite for basking in its gleeful madness.
Uncharted 4 - 62.96GB
Another Naughty Dog game makes the cut, although this time the numbers are a bit more understandable. Uncharted 4’s photo-realistic visuals and smooth-as-butter action aren’t able to run on empty, you know, but those 62 gigs are what’s keeping Drake’s face looking so emotive and the explosions he creates so jaw-dropping. Naughty Dog has also spruced up Uncharted 4 with a fair bit of free and paid content for multiplayer, and let’s not forget The Lost Legacy is out in just a month’s time. If you’re struggling for space, don’t worry, the upcoming Chloe and Nadine focused expansion works separately as a standalone title too, without the need to have Uncharted 4 installed on your system. Phew!