Sony announced Wednesday, much to the delight of retro gaming fans, that it’s going to release a miniaturized contemporary version of the original PlayStation and it’s going to be called the PlayStation Classic.
The mini console is going to be bundled with a standard HDMI cable (to hook it up to your HD television), a USB power cable, as well as two controllers for local multiplayer gaming; of course, that will only be possible with compatible titles.
Many people have expressed their disappointment with the fact that the included controllers are the USB versions of the ones we saw on the original PlayStation, which do not have the analog sticks we saw on the subsequent versions.
In our opinion, barring Ape Escape – the one game that absolutely needs an analog controller – you don’t really need it because you can play almost any game that came out in the second half of the 1990s with the included ones; although, admittedly, there are some games that are a lot more exciting to play using the analog controller.
The console, as Sony claims, is going to be 45 percent smaller than the original version of the PlayStation and will come pre-loaded with 20 games.
A kind of CD lid on top of the unit has got many people wondering if it would be possible to put in some of the old games they may have retained over the years into one of these.
Sadly, that’s not an option because of the absence of an optical drive in the PlayStation Classic; even if Sony did put in one, it would be a redundant inclusion, simply because the console is too compact to accommodate a CD.
Instead, as mentioned before, you get twenty pre-loaded games out of which only five titles have been announced, so far, while 15 more will be revealed, hopefully, sometime soon, although speculation, opinions, and expectations are rife on the internet.
So, the five games we know of are as follows:
Final Fantasy VII
Given the fact that Final Fantasy VII was among the higher-selling games on the platform at the time, and because it is pretty much synonymous with the PlayStation, its inclusion shouldn’t come as a surprise to the majority of all the retro gamers out there.
Now, here’s a super-cool 3D game which was pretty much an iconic game back in the day; certainly one of the more expensive ones on the original PlayStation.
Ridge Racer Type 4
Here’s another game that was part of one of the more popular game series on the PlayStation 1, with fast, smooth and impressive graphics.
Gaming enthusiasts should be pleased with the fact that Tekken2 is among the built-in twenty.
This critically acclaimed and commercially successful second installment of the Tekken series is a fighting game, released in the arcades in 1995 and on the PlayStation the following year.
The fifth and final game we know of is Wild Arms – a Western-themed role-playing game (RPG).
The brainchild of Japanese designer Akifumi Kaneko, Wild Arms was developed by Media.Vision – a Tokyo-based video game developing company best known for its RPG series games Chaos Rings and Wild Arms.
The eject button on top of the original PlayStation will now serve the purpose of a virtual swap button on the PlayStation Classic, pressing which will smoothly switch you over to the next game.
What is evident from this latest Sony offering in gaming consoles is that the Japanese giant is, essentially, attempting to ride the Nintendo wave created by the NES (Nintendo Entertainment System) and the SNES (Super Nintendo Entertainment System), which is not a criticism by any stretch – because it’s good for, both, the consumer and the company.
Retro Games Ltd.’s C64 Mini is another example of an attempt at reincarnating a previous console, following the Nintendo trend, of course.
Back in the awesome 80s, the C64 ruled the roost as far as gaming hardware goes, becoming the best-selling home computer of the decade.
Earlier this year it made a comeback in a scaled-down version of its evocative ancestor, giving the kids of that generation – who are now all middle-aged grownups, goes without saying – access to some heady nostalgia.
All in all, a scaled-down version of the original PlayStation, almost half the size of its ancestor, with 20 pre-loaded titles should be a good buy for $99.9 – for, both, the older generation for that sense of the nineties nostalgia, as well as for youngsters to be able to experience the pleasures and joy of the original PlayStation in the 21st century.
However, it remains to be seen what kind of work has gone into making the entire package modern enough to be palatable to the new-gen crowd, while retaining the retro factor, which is going to be one of the console’s core selling points.
Priced at $99.99 the Sony PlayStation Classic is releasing in the United States on December 3, 2018, just in time for the holiday season shopping.