On December 1st, 2014, the PlayStation turned 20 years old, so this article is dedicated to that platform. Back in primary school, I remember that everyone was talking about the console and how much they enjoyed playing Gran Turismo, Crash Bandicoot and Spyro the Dragon. I always wanted to have a PlayStation and interestingly enough, I didn’t buy one until I started college. Nevertheless, that was my chance to catch up on all those games I had heard about for years. I ended up playing more PlayStation games on emulators and on my PSP thanks to the PSone Classics functionality, but regardless of how I decided to play all those games, the original PlayStation is, without a doubt, one of my favorite platforms. Here’s a list with my favorite games in no particular order and I invite you to share yours in the comments below. By the way, take into account that I have to catch up with lots of games, so that’s the reason why you won’t find Chrono Trigger or Xenogears here. There might be an updated version of this list in the next couple of years, so stay tuned for that.
I played Metal Gear Solid because I was obsessed with reviews and everyone said it was amazing. And I wasn’t disappointed. At first, I though that Metal Gear Solid was going to be a cinematic experience with lots of action scenes, weapons and gadgets. It delivered on that front, but I wasn’t expecting the convoluted plot, anime clichés, bizarre characters and pop-culture references. Even to this very day, there’s absolutely nothing similar to Metal Gear Solid and while the gameplay is my least favorite aspect of the series, MGS is one of my favorite PlayStation games and one of my favorite games of all time.
Final Fantasy VII
I never finished Final Fantasy VII and that’s something that I’ll try to change in 2015. But I’ve played and seen enough about the game to say that I’m going to love it. The only reason why I haven’t tackled this yet is because of Final Fantasy VII’s length, but taking into account that I have two copies of the seminal JRPG (one physical copy and a digital one,) I should finally play the game.
Final Fantasy VIII is a weird game, even for a Final Fantasy game, but I ended up loving most of its unique aspects. Like most seasoned players who had the chance to play this RPG, soon after I started playing, I realized that I could exploit its mechanics which made the game a breeze. To me that wasn’t a weakness but a strength because from then on I could focus on its amazing story and eye-catching cutscenes.
This is one of those games that you must have if you have friends to play with. Tekken 3 is probably one of the best titles in the fighting game series. It’s simple enough that you can pick up the controller and start playing, but also, complex enough that you can learn some of the most complex mechanics and start pulling off some amazing combination of attacks.
Castlevania: Symphony of the Night
Symphony of the Night comes up in a lot of top ten lists and after reading so much about this game, I decided that enough was enough and that I had to play it. That’s a decision I won’t regret. All the rumors were true: Castlevania: Symphony of the Night is an amazing title. The level design is unique, the different abilities are really fun to use, the two-dimensional visuals look great and you can play it more than once and still find new things.
Resident Evil 2
Resident Evil 2 is one of the most iconic titles on the PlayStation. Whenever someone mentions the console, Resident Evil 2 is one of the few games that comes to mind. This is another game I never finished, but I played it for a long time and decided that I really liked it. Its unique structure (there’s one disc for each character and if you wanted to see the entire story, you needed to play both discs,) atmosphere and story, make Resident Evil 2 a game worth playing.
Crash Team Racing
Like Tekken 3, this is one of those games that require you to have a few friends to enjoy it. If you really think about it, Crash Team Racing is a blatant Mario Kart clone, but the difference is that you don’t need a Nintendo 64 to play this extremely entertaining kart racing game. Crash Team Racing copied the formula masterfully, there are items, collectibles, a story mode and a terrific multiplayer mode.
Yes, my “Favorite PlayStation Games” list has three Final Fantasy games. Final Fantasy IX was a weird game because it has a ton of references to previous games in the series. But what I like the most about this game is that it was a throwback in every sense of the word. Suddenly, you didn’t need to understand complex mechanics and the story wasn’t convoluted. This was a proper sendoff and one I think about to this day.
Bloody Roar 2
Bloody Roar was one of those fighting game series that felt unique and fun even if you were playing by yourself and to me that’s an achievement. Of course, playing against others was its biggest triumph, but you could try to complete the story mode without losing to unlock some of the best characters in the game. I haven’t heard about Bloody Roar in a long time, so maybe I’m one of the few people who really likes the game.
Bushido Blade 2
As far as fighting games go, Bushido Blade 2 must be one of the most unusual games available. Bushido Blade matches usually took a few seconds and, on top of that, there weren’t any combos to pull off or complex combination of buttons to memorize, so what’s not to like. It was only you against a friend with a katana (or a large sword) in a bamboo field. And that simple formula not only worked remarkably well, but it kept me and my friends glued to the screen for hours on end.