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PS5 install sizes are in and you should probably budget for storage expansion now

(Image credit: Sony PlayStation)

Sony has recently outlined how much space some of its hotly anticipated games will take up, and with PS5 install sizes this massive, the next-gen console is going to have some storage space issues – which should worry future PS5 owners.

As we previously reported, while there aren't many PS5 install sizes kicking about just yet, we do know that a few of the most sought-after games will require some serious space – including Spider-Man: Miles Morales and the Demon's Souls remake. Considering the PS5 has an all-digital option, which the more eco-conscious or frugal might prefer, it looks like many PS5 owners will be on the market for an external hard drive faster than you can say 'Ragnarok'. 

This has the potential to be a big issue – we waited for next-gen console specs for what seemed like forever and waited for prices for what seemed like even longer. Now, with the news of these absolute unit PS5 install sizes, all new questions about the efficacy of all-digital and the necessity of external storage are cropping up. Let's do some dirty math.

PS5 game install sizes

(Image credit: Sony)

Here are the PS5 install sizes we know about:

  • Spider-Man: Miles Morales install size – 50GB minimum
  • Spider-Man: Miles Morales Ultimate Launch Edition install size – 105GB
  • Demon's Souls Remake install size – 66GB

This means that with the PS5 packing a 825GB SSD, Spider-Man: Miles Morales Ultimate Launch Edition (which comes with a remaster of 2018's Spider-Man) will take up nearly 13% of your hard drive. Demon's Souls will suck up 8% of your SSD, so you'll be able to have about 12-13 Demon's Souls-sized games on your PS5 All-Digital Edition. With games like Call of Duty: Warzone throwing 40GB+ updates at us every few months and taking up more than 175GB in some cases, it's not hard to imagine that All-Digital owners will quickly run out of space.

I'm someone who doesn't care for physical media – I steadfastly believe that stacks of neon green and blue cases piled up on my TV stand do not spark joy. Plus, I believe that I'm doing the environment a small favor by going the digital download route. My disdain for physical media coupled with my frugality means I'm looking at purchasing both the Xbox Series S and the All-Digital PS5 in due time. 

"It's not hard to imagine that PS5 All-Digital owners will quickly run out of space"

So, let's do some more math. I spend $399 on the PS5 All-Digital Edition, purchase Spider-Man: Miles Morales Ultimate Launch Edition for $70 (since I didn't have a PS4 until recently, I've never played Spider-Man), and download Call of Duty: Warzone for free. For $469 I now have around a third of my PS5's storage space accounted for and only two games to show for it. 

Yes, this is when expanded storage comes into play – but that's at an expanded cost. As we previously reported, the PS5 SSD won't require a proprietary solution for storage problems: you'll be able to upgrade by installing an M2 SSD – but not just any M2 SSD. Sony's requirements will be strict, and most of the compatible M2 SSDs simply won't be available on day one. System architect Mark Cerny said back in March that "it's likely to be a bit past" the November 12 launch of PS5, and warned consumers to "hold off on getting that M2 drive until you hear from us". 

Budget for expansion

(Image credit: Sony)

Let's imagine that we know which M2 SSDs will be compatible with PS5 (we don't, as some may technically fit but won't make the most of the PS5's hardware) and tack on the price of expanded storage to your next-gen budget. A much smarter human than I (GamesRadar+ writer Austin Wood) explained to me, "A 1tb PCIe SSD is around $150-$200, but PS5 will only work with PCI 4, whereas 3 is the standard at the moment. We don't have a lot of commercially available PCI 4 drives to compare to, but based on how RAM prices work, I'd say a PS5 compatible SSD would be between $200 and $300 for around 1TB." 

Microsoft has a similar problem on its hand with the all-digital Xbox Series S and Xbox Series X, with the officially sanctioned 1TB Storage Expansion Card from Seagate coming in with a $219.99 price tag attached to it. Storage solutions aren't cheap when an SSD is involved, and it's likely many of us will feel the sting when you take into account the growing size of game downloads, installs, and patches. 

In short, PS5 install sizes and the as-yet-unknown cost of external SSDs presents an interesting storage problem for next-gen gamers. Here's hoping SSD manufacturers and game developers can work together to solve that problem by providing SSDs at reasonable prices and games at reasonable sizes. 

Alyssa Mercante

Brooklyn-based Editor and mother of three rescue cats. I'm here to bring you piping hot news tea and in-depth features that include going drink-for-drink with Geralt in The Witcher 3. Find me  in the Tower in Destiny 2, buying you back in Warzone, and building Brooklyn brownstones in The Sims 4.