With the imminent arrival of the Crash Bandicoot N-Sane Trilogy HD remake on PS4, we have today decided to shed some light on a few classic PlayStation 2 games that you can already play on your brand spanking new PS4 console and enjoy right now! So many game developers are choosing to re-release their flagship games on this new console, all emulated in HD to get even more out of the titles…including trophies now on most!! So lets dig in and check out a few of the very best examples!
Ape Escape 2
(Japan Studio / Sony Interactive)
The sequel to the PlayStation original, 2002’s Ape Escape 2 is perhaps the most beloved entry in Sony Computer Entertainment Japan’s series of monkey-catching adventures. The game hands players a series of unique weapons with which to capture apes who have run amok all over the world. (Think a platforming-heavy version of Pokémon.) There are also minigames and, best of all, plenty of puns to laugh at or groan over.
Now here is where this list gets crowded. Rockstar really burst onto the scene during the PS2 days with a variety of differing open world / semi-open world games that set a standard of quality that have carried them through the following 2 generations of PlayStation. Bully (Canis Canem Edit) could easily have made this list, however we have already dedicated an entire blog to the game – read it here. The Warriors might also have snuck in, but unfortunately not today; so instead we are going to highlight an even more controversial title in Rockstar’s arsenal.
Manhunt is perhaps Rockstar’s most controversial game – so much so that a number of countries ended up banning its distribution. A stealth survival horror game, Manhunt saw you play James Earl Cash, a would-be death row inmate forced into a deadly game making snuff films. Infamous for its graphic violence and grim plot, it is very much an “M for Mature” game – certainly not for everyone. But if you can stomach it, you will find gaming’s A Clockwork Orange.
Resident Evil – Code: Veronica X
Code: Veronica X was the PS2 version of the Dreamcast game Code Veronica, which came out in 2000. While it’s the fourth main Resident Evil game, the story takes place three months after the events of Resident Evil 2 and concurrent to the destruction of Raccoon City as seen in Resident Evil 3: Nemesis. It follows Claire and Chris Redfield as they try to survive a viral outbreak at a remote prison island.
One of the reasons Code Veronica stood out is because it used real-time 3D environments and dynamic camera movement, as opposed to the pre-rendered backgrounds of the previous Resident Evil games.
Star Wars Triple Pack
These 3 games first appeared on PS4 as part of the Battlefront Console Bundle. Star Wars: Racer Revenge, Star Wars: Jedi Starfighter, and Star Wars: Bounty Hunter are all now available individually and as a triple pack so now you don’t need to buy a console with a questionable Darth Vader print and gaudy DualShock 4 controller to play them.
I wouldn’t wager that any of them hold up particularly well against modern racers, star fighters, and third-person games about shooting aliens. But if you long for the days when LucasArts would regularly create new Star Wars games to blaze through in extended weekend sessions, these are the nostalgia trips you’re looking for.
PaRappa the Rapper 2
(NanaOn-Sha, Sony Computer Entertainment)
PaRappa the Rapper is a cool, cool dude! It’s a classic tale about a rapping dog with a lifetime supply of noodles who really just wants a good burger, dang it all. During his adventure, he learns romantic karate, joins the military, and even tries his hand at hairdressing. It’s a reminder of how joyful and experimental the early PlayStation days were.
There are noticeably crisper visuals and unsurprisingly, you can’t turn off the black borders (not that I would, anyway). There’s a high-res digital manual included, though, and you can use system-wide features like game-play capturing, Share-play with a PSN friend, and, if you’re feeling bold, Remote Play.
Grand Theft Auto Trilogy (III, Vice City, San Andreas)
Honestly, I’m starting to lose count of the number of truly great Rockstar games available here on the PS Store from days gone by. None however, stand out as much as these three games. If you owned a PS2 in the early 2000’s there’s almost no way you didn’t own at least one of these three games at some point. Again, these were available as a triple pack or individually.
Grand Theft Auto III was a game-changer (chortle…pun) when it first came out and spawned a number of clones looking to capitalise on the immersive open-world game. Vice City then followed, introducing a more charismatic main character along with an engrossing, Scarface-style, story-line taking you from rags to riches in a colourful, vibrant city. Then along came San Andreas, dialling down the vibrancy a tad in order to make a game that felt just a little more realistic. Coupled with added features that encouraged you to look after the physical well-being of your character (or not) you were again set free in a massive open-world city to complete missions and make your mark in the underbelly of society.
No-one could really argue if any of these 3 games were your favourite – there was so little to choose between them.
Why not pop over to the PS Store and check out the selection for yourself – at the time that this was published there were almost 100 PS2 games available for purchase.
Which was your favourite title? Are there any that you would like to see get a re-release? Let us know!!