What are the best PS1 games coming to PlayStation Classic?
What other decent games might be coming to the PlayStation Classic, the more compact and powerful version of the PS1? The choice is huge when you consider the console’s illustrious history that has given birth to many legendary franchises and gaming technologies. On PS1 you can find games of any genre, be it horror, action, or stealth.
With so many choices, it’s hard to pick just 25 titles, but we’ve tried to highlight the very best PS1 games ever released. So it’s time to dive into the past and take on the legendary PlayStation games from Metal Gear Solid to PaRappa the Rapper. For more up-to-date games, check out the best PS4 and Xbox One games, or check out the top of the best MMORPGs and best co-op games.
Tenchu 2: Birth of the Stealth Assassins
Without a doubt, the most successful stealth game is Metal Gear Solid, although Snake is still not the epitome of a true ninja, unlike Rikimaru and Ayame in Tenchu 2, who show high-quality stealth operations during their missions.
The game has many interesting features, but the main advantage of Tenchu 2 is the mission creation mode. You could build your own mission from scratch and use your creativity to create the perfect assassination plan. And no one cared that missions sometimes took longer to develop than completed.
Klonoa: Door to Phantomile
Despite the fact that Klonoa was originally intended for a children’s audience, players of all ages loved the superbly created universe and unique design of the game. It is a cute, fun, and simple platformer with unique additions for the time to grab the attention of gamers.
The game used a 2.5D engine (this is a 3D engine with predominantly 2D graphics). It was then a great opportunity to ensure accessibility and maintain interest in old 2D platformers as the industry transitioned to 3D games everywhere. The game contributed to the development of platformers, a genre that has not lost its relevance until now. Klonoa may not have become Namko’s great legacy, but it will forever remain in our hearts.
If you’ve never played Suikoden 2 or even heard of it, you may just never see it on sale. Despite the high reviews and a loyal fan base (probably too late), Suikoden 2 was a limited edition and never re-released. It’s sad that one of the greatest RPG games on the PlayStation has simply gone out of sight.
The plot is the main feature of the game, and it is not only the line of the main character. You need to spend most of the game looking for about 108 allies who will fight on your side. This is somewhat reminiscent of Pokemon, only your supporters can talk, kill, and their freedom is not limited by magic prison balls. Okay, maybe Suikoden 2 doesn’t look like Pokemon at all.
Driver: You Are the Wheelman
The driver makes your dreams come true and takes you to a 70s car chase movie where you play as a tough undercover cop. The game could be played for hours, driving through impressive urban areas, hiding from the authorities, and breaking the rules during the main missions. The game’s plot is developing in New York, San Francisco, Miami, and Los Angeles.
The physics of cars was fantastically real for its time: any accident left a mark on our cars. And while we wanted to remain indestructible (and who doesn’t?), The realism and fast-paced action of the game encouraged playing it over and over again.
Spyro The Dragon
Like Crash Bandicoot (which we’ll talk about later), Spyro was a kind of PlayStation Mario. Over the years, a whole series of games has been released about the adventures of this funny purple dragon, although the very first of them, created in 1998, is considered to be the best of them.
Spyro is a very capable dragon, despite the fact that he is much smaller than his relatives. Using a combination of leaps, hovering, fire attacks, and headbutts, Spyro battles against the villainous Gnasty Gnork and his loyal minions. Plus, you can play as a dragon. For the dragon! And he’s adorable.
This is the very game that allows you to be in the shoes of the real Spider-Man. Playing Spider-Man on PS1 makes you feel like a superhero, climbing up the walls of houses and beating up bad guys without even breaking a sweat.
We could shoot cobwebs, jump from roof to roof — we could do what Peter Parker did, trying to help people in distress. But the game showed in all its glory not only the super-abilities of Spider-Man, it revealed his character to us with amazing accuracy. When Spider-Man came out, it was the best comic-based game, and to this day it remains the best of the entire Spider-Man series.
From the first five minutes of the game, it becomes clear that Vagrant Story will pull your head over heels. After such an impressive start, any self-respecting gamer simply must keep playing. It won’t work in another way.
Luckily, the rest of the game is just as great. The combat system here is one of the most difficult in comparison with other games, but this fact is not at all scary. There is too much brown in the graphics, but in Vagrant Story, oddly enough, it looks organic. And, of course, the plot, which clings and does not let go until the very end. Vagrant Story is a masterpiece that has been hidden under the shadow of bigger names. This game cannot be overstated. Recommended.
Mega Man x4
When Mega Man X came out on PlayStation, some fans worried that the overall quality of the series would be compromised. First impressions of Mega Man 8 raised doubts about Capcom’s capabilities. Thankfully, Mega Man X4 lives up to the quality of SNES games and takes the X series to a whole new level.
In X4, you can finally choose between X and Zero characters to complete the entire game. These heroes have two completely different play styles. Megaman X does not differ in special abilities, and Zero attracts with his mastery of swords. Thanks to this, X4 is two games in one, which makes the passage much more interesting.
R4: Ridge Racer Type 4
Despite some similarities in graphics, R4 is very different from the racing simulator Gran Turismo 2. Ridge Racer is all about arcade controls, drifts, and most importantly, ease of passage. Even players with no experience in racing games can play well and feel like a real professional. R4 was the latest and greatest of the Ridge Racer series released for the PlayStation, and while the franchise continues to this day, R4 is still considered a success for the series.
Street Fighter Alpha 3
Fans of retro games scold the PS1 for using polygonal visuals rather than 2D sprites while forgetting about the large number of games that retain hand-drawn graphics. A prime example of this is the success of Capcom and its Alpha series with Street Fighter Alpha 3, which has some of the best 2D fighters in any PlayStation game.
Not only did SFA3 have multiple play styles and pickups to choose from, but it also had an impressively rich lineup. Fans of the series had the opportunity to see the original characters Rose and Sakura battle classic SF2 fighters such as Gile, Fay Long, and Blanca. SFA3 is proof that old school fighters still have a place in the polygon era.
Tomb Raider 2
The original Tomb Raider may have pioneered action-adventure 3D games, but at the time it came out PlayStation was still a young platform and polygonal graphics were rare in games. By the time Tomb Raider 2 was released, a year after the first part, everyone already knew who Lara Croft was and was looking forward to the sequel.
And Core Design did not disappoint. The developers took into account all the shortcomings of the first game and created a huge and even more exciting world. TR2 is far ahead of its predecessor, which, however, cannot be said of Tomb Raider 3.
Oddworld: Abe’s Oddysee
Damn it, Abe’s Oddysee was beautiful. Perhaps not in the generally accepted sense of the word (the story of a captive-born mudokon slave who leads a rebellion and avoids death from a meat grinder is not a bedtime story for you), but it’s hard to deny the high artistic value of the game design and soundtrack. Oddworld (from English “strange world”) absolutely lived up to its name and it was its uniqueness that attracted fans.
Even the game engine was unique and got its own name: ALIVE (Aware Lifeforms In a Virtual Environment – from English. Conscious forms of life in a virtual environment). Enemies and friends alike all had a unique character and reacted differently to certain stimuli, and not just predictably walked left or right. The result was a world that makes you think and reason – a fresh concept for 2D platformers at the time.
Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver
Soul Reaver has become one of PlayStation’s most memorable 3D action-adventure games thanks to its dark story, impressive voice acting, and varied mechanics. No one expected such a success, given that the style of this game was completely different from its predecessor in the RPG genre.
In the process of solving puzzles, the player could switch between the material and the spiritual world. It was an unusual and interesting decision that overshadowed the fact that the game was pretty simple. But simple doesn’t mean bad, and we recall with nostalgia the times when we fought for a vampire in Soul Reaver.
Final Fantasy vii
Of course, this game is on our list. But it is unlikely that you can tell something about her that you do not know yet. Final Fantasy VII set the bar for the RPG genre – the Beatles of RPGs. Cloud and Sephiroth have become legendary characters thanks to their epic adventures in this great 1997 game.
Final Fantasy VII was good at everything: gameplay, story, and graphics. The system for obtaining new abilities (the matter system) still influences the design of modern games. The game is also famous for one of the most unexpected plot twists in history, and the quality of the graphics for that time was simply incredible. Final Fantasy VII revolutionized the RPG genre and left all other games far behind.
When the Dual Shock controller was introduced, few games, including Ape Escape, took advantage of it. Instead of using the right stick to control the camera, it was used to catch monkeys with various fun objects. When the monkey hit the net, or when you twisted the accelerating hoop, each aiming action was accompanied by an indescribable tactile sensation.
Truth be told, who wouldn’t want to travel back in time, hitting monkeys over the head with a lightsaber-like object, then grabbing them into a temporary net and immediately bringing them back to the present. The idea sells itself.
In the second half of the 90s, 3D fighting games were hugely popular, but Tekken 3 definitely did not want to rest on its laurels. The arcade port pushed the boundaries of the PlayStation’s graphics capabilities, and the improved gameplay was praised and took the game to an even higher level.
There were so many new fighters and varied missions (thanks to the addition of mini-games) that it was hard to believe Tekken 3 could exist on the PS1. It was an amazing game and is still considered by many to be the best of the entire series.
Controlling worms has never been so much fun. Especially when these worms intend to kill other worms with an arsenal that would make the US Army sweat with fear.
Our worms moved on ninja ropes, blasted each other with rockets, and sent their brothers into the depths of water. It doesn’t matter how many times we have played this game and how many enemy worms we have destroyed, the game is still interesting. Even now, 10 years after the release of the original version, we still enjoy the gameplay .. Our love of killing worms will never die.
Gran Turismo 2
Remember the days when your parents walked into the living room and thought you were watching TV when you were actually playing a video game? This probably happened when you watched the replay of the race in Gran Turismo 2. Yes, it looked very realistic.
Of course, GT2 was not only famous for its high-quality gameplay recording. This game series made racing simulators popular, and GT2 was as good as other PS games. Even those who were not interested in cars and/or racing were attracted by the influence of the famous name. And let’s not forget about over 600 highly detailed cars and realistic and intuitive control settings. Those were good times.
Paraappa the Rapper
The forerunner of rhythm games like Dance Dance Revolution and Rock Band, PaRappa the Rapper developed the great idea of simultaneously pressing buttons that match certain beats and added adorable paper animations, fun rhymes, and catchy melodies. Everyone loved the lighthearted and funny songs about how to drive and fight for the toilet queue.
But if you didn’t have time to press the button, the song quickly turned into a funny mess. At times, listening to PaRappa skip his lines and step in at the wrong time was as enjoyable as winning the game. Well, at least for the audience.
Silent Hill was conceived not just as a standard horror movie, where scary monsters jump at you from around the corner. The goal of the creators was to shock and scare you to the point that you were afraid to go to bed. And oddly enough, everyone really liked it.
Dense fog, oppressive darkness, and many dimensions – Silent Hill had the most frightening atmosphere ever to forget. Even more disturbing was the realization that the main character of the game, Harry Mason, was not a cool Space Marine with a cigarette in his mouth – he was an ordinary dude who did not know how to fight at all. Whether this was due to inconvenient control settings, or the developers deliberately limited the character’s combat abilities, is unknown, but then we all discovered a new meaning of the “survival” genre.
If you were chased by deadly monsters, a flight would be the first thought that came to your mind. And thanks to Konami for bringing this idea to life. And according to the plot, in one of the endings of the game, you could be kidnapped by aliens. Incredibly cool.
Twisted Metal 3
As soon as cars were invented, drivers dreamed of installing machine guns on them in order to brutally fire at other cars with impunity. This dream came true with Twisted Metal. Then gunpowder was added to Twisted Metal 2. Well, in Twisted Metal 3 they wrapped it all up in a straitjacket and set it on fire, creating one big ball of blazing absurdity.
Of course, extreme survival racing was the most compelling part of the game. But the environment in which the battles took place and the flimsy portrayals of the characters robbed the game of its individuality and made it mechanical and impersonal. Sony was betting on the fact that there is a mad sadist deep inside each of us, and it was right.
Resident Evil 2
The first game in the Resident Evil series was great in many ways, but it still had a lot of flaws that prevented it from achieving true greatness (like funny cutscenes). Capcom quickly learned its lesson, however, and returned two years later with Resident Evil 2: a game that surpasses the first in almost every way.
Gore, grisly events, puzzles, thoughtful characters, and of course, a strong desire to survive as opposed to the need to destroy everyone around – all of these elements have been significantly improved (at least in terms of the capabilities of the PlayStation) in RE2. Perhaps in RE3, the gameplay was slightly better, but it lacked that memorable personality.
Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 2
If Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater effectively combined two of the coolest things in the world – skateboarding and video games – to win first place, then THPS2 has become a rare diamond in the gaming arena. She instantly became a classic, which not only struck the imagination of the then fans but also created an army of new ones.
Increasing the length of the levels, creating your own skater and your own skate parks, and implementing instructions on how to link combos are colossal additions, proving that THPS2 was not released just for the money (although we cannot say the same about any of the subsequent games Tony Hawk, released over the past 10 years).
Plus, thanks to THPS2, we all know the Powerman 5000 song “When Worlds Collide” by heart. And every time we see an escalator, we have a desire to grind on the front suspension, even if in life we are not skaters at all. Such was the impact of this incredible game.
Metal Gear Solid
Metal Gear Solid was asking too much of its players. First, we had to learn to stop pushing the joystick buttons like goofy sitcom heroes and just watch the game. When the control passed to us, it was necessary to apply the skills of stealthy movement and quiet murders. After pushing forward as fast as possible in MGS, you also often faced quick crushing defeat. Why did we put up with this?
MGS not only gave us an immersive interactive experience but also became a stage of evolution in games. Her movie-like cutscenes and elaborate stealth levels were the benchmarks for quality not often found in video games. Here Konami and Kojima did a great job and brilliantly coped with the task.
Castlevania: Symphony of the Night
Hearing the name Castlevania, many gamers remember the game Symphony of the Night. And this is not surprising – she was amazing. If this description doesn’t tell you anything, it must be that you just haven’t played this classic of the genre.
The expansive map, RPG elements, unlockable skills, and nicely, the return of SOTN have led to the term Metroidvania to describe these games. And thanks to Konami’s focus on leveraging PS’s power to enhance 2D graphics rather than delving deeper into trending 3D games, SOTN was a success. So big that it is considered one of the best games not only in the PS era but in the entire history of video games.
If you want to know about other legendary games from the time, check out the best N64 games of all time. If you’re only interested in PlayStation games, here’s the top of the best PS3 games.