My PlayStation 2: The Long Goodbye
I’m among the folks still using a previous-generation system with my PlayStation 2 and it looks like it’s going to be a long goodbye for my console in two different ways. The first way is that it’s been a very long run for my system, a PS2 bought in the spring of 2001, and it hasn’t exactly been a smooth journey the whole way. The second way is that there’s at least one brand new title still unreleased for the PS2 that I’m definitely going to pick up and there’s a stack of older, great titles I still have yet to play. Read on for more on what my long goodbye for my PlayStation 2 will involve.
The Bad News: The Hardware
First, the bad news. My system’s been one of those afflicted with the dreaded Disc Read Error from time to time. It first started when playing through the exquisite God Of War, which prompted me to read up on how to fix it online, painstakingly print out all the pages, and then with much fear and nervousness, actually open up and fix the problem in my PS2. The tweaking of the angle of the laser, which seems to be the main way of fixing the problem, worked for quite a while, but I’m starting to see signs of it becoming finicky again when the discs are rentals — somewhat scratched and possibly not spotless discs will make the system work harder to pull data off of a disc. I’m seeing this with my current rental of Metal Gear Solid 3: Subsistence. I’m hoping it lasts long enough to finish out all the great games I haven’t yet played.
That isn’t to say that my system won’t fetch decent money on eBay if I decide to sell it there. It’s a first-year system with the 40 Gig HDD add-on and the modding community seems to like those kinds of systems, and the modding community often has absolutely no problem dealing with finicky lasers. They see them all the time, it seems.
The Good News: Too Many Great Games!
It’s hard to believe the PS2′s time in the spotlight is basically over, but it is. There’s just one more major hurrah for the system coming up, and that’s God Of War II. Everything I’ve seen has me keenly interested in the game, so I’ll be picking that puppy up as soon as possible.
Right now I’m slogging through Metal Gear Solid 3: Subsistence in a desparate effort to see the whole story before I try playing Metal Gear Solid: Portable Ops or Metal Gear Acid 2 on the PSP. I can’t believe how incredible the texture work, direction, artistry, and the innovative sneaking gameplay all come together. While I’m not as hardcore as I used to be, so I’m having problems enjoying this game as much as I probably should, I certainly admire it and can’t give up on it.
My GameFly queue is a litany of franchises I need to polish off:
Ape Escape 3 is high on my list. I greatly enjoyed Ape Escape’s innovative gameplay, and the sense of humor carried forward through Ape Escape 2 really made the game a pleasure to play. Given the monkeys’ mini-game in MGS3 (which I haven’t yet played) I take it I’m not the only one who likes this franchise.
Rogue Trooper got great reviews as a sleeper hit that refines third person action gameplay in interesting and fun ways. It’s based on a comic book franchise I’ve never heard of, but I’ve read enough about it that I’m curious.
TimeSplitters: Future Perfect also got good reviews with fun use of time paradoxes and other time-travel possibilities in an interesting storyline. While the straight-up shooter action of TimeSplitters 2 didn’t hook me that well, I’m thinking a stronger story will help me stay with the game.
Wrath Unleashed hit my GameFly list for the same reason a number of other games have — a good review on GameCritics.com. This game has been billed as a modernized version of the classic computer game Archon, which has always been enough to have me give a game a try.
Capcom Classics Collection, Vol. 2 looks like a fun set of classic games. I’ll try that on a rental, no problem.
Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell: Chaos Theory is regarded by some to be the high point of the Splinter Cell series, with the most recent installment taking a step or two back in terms of gameplay. While I’ve played a couple of earlier Splinter Cell demos on the PS2, I never really felt I understood the game. The story and multiplayer gameplay are both said to be excellent, so I feel I need to at least try out this game.
Urban Chaos: Riot Response is another GameCritics game that surprised them by painting a sympathetic picture of riot control, of all things. A strong story and the innovation of the riot shield in a shooter led them to recommend this game, so I’ll give it a try.
Now that’s a long list, and I don’t know if I’ll even get a chance to play them all. I’m sure you have last-gen games you want to tear into even if you have a new-generation system calling to you with flashier graphics and gameplay features. What’s on your gaming backlog, and what will be making you bid a long, drawn-out goodbye to your previous-generation system?