Ever since 2008, trophy hunters have been earning crushingly difficult trophies. Anything is possible when digital bling is on the line, including world-class speedruns, no-death runs, and multiplayer dominance. A platinum trophy is the mark of a truly completed game, only being unlocked when you earn every other trophy in a game’s trophy list (not counting DLC trophies).
The difficulty of hunting a platinum trophy varies wildly, from 20-minute shovelware adventures to 100-hour endurance challenges. In the spirit of exploring the more challenging side of trophy hunting, here are the most difficult platinum trophies that PlayStation has to offer.
Updated September 23, 2023, by Dominic Allen: There are so many more difficult platinum trophies that can be tapped into. The sheer amount of them, plus many not being talked about by other outlets, makes this list ripe for further expansion. Even if you’re primarily an achievement hunter, there’s a lot of overlap between the two communities. What’s hard on Xbox will also be hard on the blue brand, and this is even more true with so many games having cross-platform play now.
The PlayStation community was begging for a trophy patch on this game for the longest time. Four years after the game came out, fans finally got one, but at what cost? Metal Gear Solid 4 is the hardest MGS to get all the trophies in. The main culprit here is the trophy for getting all of the iPod tracks called Sounds of the Battlefield.
You must get the Big Boss emblem, which is really hard but at least a fun challenge that requires mastery. However, you actually need to get all the emblems. This requires at least eight playthroughs and means you also have to get the emblems for playing badly. This is just frustrating and unnecessary. Why couldn’t you just get the Big Boss one and call it a day?
17 Doom (1993) And Doom 2 (Classic)
These are technically Xbox games, but they are on PlayStation as well and equally difficult. Most of the trophies here aren’t bad at all, except for the Nightmare difficulty ones. In both games, you must beat every level in the core experience on Nightmare difficulty cooperatively. If you want to do it by yourself, which is more challenging and rewarding, too bad.
You must play with two to four players here. Keep in mind this is a local co-op, too. This likely means you’ll be playing by yourself anyway with another controller. Hardcore Doom players just don’t want to play Nightmare mode like this. The actual difficulty itself is also brutal, with Nightmare mode and the additional multiplayer monsters at play.
16 Wanted: Dead
As of writing, you can’t platinum Wanted: Dead due to one of the trophies being bugged. However, even in the future, when it gets patched, this game would still be one of the hardest-ever action games to platinum. The reason for this is that you need to be talented at so many game genres. You obviously need to be good at the core game to beat all the difficulty modes, but what really bites you is the side content.
You have to be a rhythm game savant because you must complete a full seven-minute track without missing a single note. That’s ludicrous. Plus, you have to beat an ultra-hard 2D space shooter twice on top of that. Who’s going to excel in all three of those areas to get this platinum?
15 Outlast 2
Outlast 2 is already a horrific experience. But there’s nothing quite as terrifying as attempting to clinch that Platinum trophy for yourself. There isn’t just one trophy that’s the real kicker here either. You’re going to have to put your game face on for this one.
For starters, you’re going to have to complete the game on Insane difficulty in order to claim the Saint trophy. But while you’re at it, you might as well finish the game on Insane difficulty without reloading your camera batteries to snag the Messiah trophy. That means you’ll be walking blind in many areas that you must know by heart.
The Outlast series is all about running and hiding. But if you want the Prophet trophy, you’ll need to beat the game without hiding in a barrel or closet. The final task on this gauntlet of terrors is the Asahel trophy, which requires you to speedrun through the game in under four hours. Good luck.
14 Sackboy: A Big Adventure
Look, we’ve all been fooled by the LittleBigPlanet series’ cutesy aesthetic. There are moments in these games that will ultimately test your platforming mettle. Sackboy: A Big Adventure isn’t quite as tough as its predecessors. Most of the trophies are fairly simple to claim. However, there is one among them that will have you gripping your controller in frustration.
String it Together is the trophy that requires you to beat all the game’s time trials — in one sitting without dying. The Ripsnorter is the final time trial that literally strings all the game’s 15 challenges together in one grueling gauntlet that you must complete in under ten minutes without dying. Welcome to platforming hell, friends.
13 Call Of Duty: Black Ops
Some of the earliest trophies in the history of trophy hunting were among the worst. The Call of Duty series ensured you were skilled enough in the first-person shooting arena to claim a platinum in each succeeding entry. Black Ops’ platinum trophy demanded that you complete the game on Veteran difficulty.
Black Ops for trophy hunters, however, wasn’t just about the difficulty when it came to its Zombies mode. The See Me, Stab Me, Heal Me trophy can only be achieved if you obtain a ballistic knife, upgrade it at the Pack-a-Punch machine, and shoot it at a downed teammate to revive them.
To be clear, this requires that you purchase a randomized weapon at the mysterious chest that moves around the map hoping it’s the knife. Then, you must have the points necessary to upgrade the weapon. Finally, you must find yourself in a situation where you can take this difficult shot at a downed teammate amid the hordes of zombies. Have fun!
12 Max Payne 3
The fallen-from-grace cop, Max Payne, sees his story book-ended with an explosive threequel. As a third-person action shooter, your reflexes will undoubtedly be tested. To get started with the hardest aspect of claiming the platinum trophy, you must first obtain the Serious Payne trophy by completing the game on hard difficulty.
That’s not even the tip of the iceberg. Completing hard difficulty unlocks hardcore mode, which you then must complete for the Payne In The Ass trophy. Beating hard difficulty also unlocks A New York Minute mode, which adds a timer to each chapter, forcing you to speed run. You must beat A New York Minute to unlock New York Minute Hardcore.
To claim The Shadows Rushed Me trophy, you must beat the game on New York Minute Hardcore, which requires you to play through the game in one sitting, with time restrictions and no deaths. By this point, you will have played through the game many times, so maybe you’ll be ready.
11 Evil Dead: The Game
The multiplayer asymmetrical horror title, Evil Dead: The Game, reintroduces Ash Williams to the world as the deadite slayer that he and his comrades have become across a few Sam Raimi films and a TV series. Because the game is mostly a multiplayer-centric title, earning trophies becomes increasingly difficult given that your skills will only get you so far. You’re at the mercy of your teammates, or the players you are up against.
Anyone who has played Evil Dead: The Game knows that commanding the demon is rather difficult if you’re up against a unified team of survivors. There’s also an extensive learning curve to controlling the demon and spawning enemies. The Armageddon trophy requires that you win 30 matches as a demon. This is easier said than done. Effortless Evil takes this a step further by forcing you to win a match as the demon without using a boss unit, your most powerful tool.
10 Star Ocean: The Last Hope
Star Ocean: The Last Hope isn’t difficult in the same way that other entries on this list are. Its trophy list doesn’t require you to be mechanically gifted, an incredible speedrunner, or a PvP master. Instead, it just asks that you devote some time to it. Between 450 and 1000 hours, to be exact.
The Last Hope is a ridiculously long JRPG without accounting for its trophy list, which requires you to beat it multiple times on different difficulties. There’s also a very small margin for error, as missing a single collectible can force you to play the entire game again to collect it and earn its trophy. If you want this platinum, be ready for the long haul.
9 Crash Bandicoot 4
Crash Bandicoot 4 takes an already difficult series and turns it up to 11. Levels are longer and tougher than their ’90s predecessors and have many missable collectibles that force you to replay the entire level for the smallest mistake.
As well as the difficulty of just beating the levels casually, Crash 4’s trophy list tasks you with achieving 106 percent completion. To do this, you must beat each level without dying while collecting all the collectibles. This is a mammoth task on its own, but it won’t quite get you to the percent needed. For that, you’ll also have to get near-perfect time trial speeds on every one of Crash 4’s grueling levels.
8 Tetris Effect
38 years on, Tetris is still supplying a relaxing time for those who play casually and an absolute nightmare for those who want to push themselves. Tetris Effect is probably the biggest nightmare of any game in the series, bringing with it one trophy that will challenge anyone who isn’t a professional.
The ‘Seriously? Seriously.’ trophy is one of the most intense 100 percent completion trophies in PlayStation history, tasking you with getting an SS Rank literally everywhere it’s possible. You’ll have to master everything Tetris Effect has to offer and somehow not throw your controller in the process.
7 Ninja Gaiden Sigma 2
Ninja Gaiden Sigma 2 is a notoriously difficult hack’n’slash. To earn the platinum trophy, you’ll have to beat the main campaign seven times, including once on the hardest difficulty. Unfortunately, the main campaign is just the warm-up for the real challenge. The ‘All missions successfully completed’ trophy is the real roadblock, tasking you with beating all 35 online missions.
This doesn’t sound too tough on the surface, until you realize that the last set of these missions forces both you and an equally skilled partner to fight off incredibly dangerous foes on the hardest difficulty setting. Even if you can take the enemies out, you’ll still have to find another player that can also handle the heat. What’s even worse is that the PS4 version of this game only allows you to use a bot for the second player. Even with the bot’s added buffs, it’s way harder than the PS3 version.
6 Super Meat Boy
Super Meat Boy is probably the most famous difficult platinum trophy of the early-PS4 years, requiring you to complete a dozen incredibly difficult trophies. The hardest of these is ‘Impossible Boy,’ which requires you to beat every level in the Dark World variant of the final world, Cotton Alley, in a row without dying.
Super Meat Boy is already one of the most difficult indie games, so it goes without saying that beating the hardest 20 levels in one sitting without dying is easily one of the most impressive gaming feats on PlayStation.
5 Wolfenstein 2: The New Colossus
Wolfenstein 2’s trophy list is a fairly standard one, with finding collectibles, beating bosses, and completing upgrades making up most of the entries. Among these average trophies, though, is ‘Mein Leben,’ an infamous trophy that tasks you with completing the entire game in one sitting, on the hardest difficulty, without dying once.
Dying even once on Mein Leben difficulty wipes your save file, forcing you to play through the six-hour campaign all over again, unskippable cutscenes and all. This is just as difficult and soul-crushing as it sounds.
4 Devil May Cry 5
Devil May Cry 5 is probably the hardest hack’n’slash game of the 2010s. At the very top of its difficulty curve is Hell And Hell mode, in which enemies behave as if they’re on hard mode, and you die in a single hit. On top of this handicap, there are also no checkpoints throughout levels, forcing you to restart an entire chapter if you lose all three of your lives.
The platinum trophy is guarded by one that not only requires you to beat this mode, but gain S ranks on each and every chapter. That means there’ll be no safe, cheesy strats to help you get through the fights. You’ll have to play recklessly and aggressively while never being hit.
3 Street Fighter 5
Fighting games are famous for their mechanical complexity. Professional players dedicate dozens of hours weekly to perfecting their skills, in the hopes that they can compete against other players as gifted as they are.
Street Fighter 5’s ‘Let’s fight someone strong!’ trophy tasks you with facing off against people like this in order to enter the upper echelons of SFV’s online leaderboards, the Gold League. It’s a brutal climb to the top, and you’ll be expected to triumph over some of Street Fighter’s very best players to even have a shot at completing this trophy.
While Street Fighter 5’s platinum trophy merely requires you to enter the elite group of online players, The Elder Scrolls Online goes one step further. To obtain the ‘Emperor!’ trophy, you will have to be the number one player in the entire world. No, really.
Only by sitting at the very top of the ESO leaderboards will you unlock ‘Emperor!’ and continue on towards the platinum. This is, of course, an immense task, and requires a clear strategy, as well as a team of players who are willing to help raise you to Emperor status.
1 Crypt Of The Necrodancer
Crypt of the Necrodancer is widely considered to be the most difficult single-player trophy hunt of all time. As well as being an all-around hard game, Necrodancer has one trophy that puts it head and shoulders above the rest of the hardest trophy lists on PlayStation.
‘Lowest of the low’ requires you to beat an ‘all chars’ run, a continuous run in which you beat the game nine times in a row, once with each character. Not only do you have to beat this run, but you also have to do so without picking up a single item. This means no damage upgrades, no weapons, and no ways to regain health. A single mistake can be fatal, and deaths can destroy up to four hours of progress. There’s no wonder this platinum trophy takes 900 hours to complete.
Next: The Most Ridiculous Achievements/Trophies