Review by THAguyINgta3

"Best Console Ever Made"

The launch of the PlayStation2 (PS2) was on October 26, 2000. Masses of people were crowded in little spaces, just camping in line to get their hands on the first batch of PS2's that faithful Thursday. Every single one of them sold out, which was not surprising. Only 500,000 PS2's hit the USA's stores that day because of a mess up by Sony. There were supposed to be 1,000,000. Oh well. Here is my review of the PS2.

I wish I could have back all of the hours I put into playing my PlayStation2. I have had a PS2 since its launch on October 26, 2000. What a great day that was. It was a Thursday and I had school. I woke up around 6 A.M. and me and my step-dad went to the mall to wait outside of Sears to get one of the 4 PlayStation2's they had coming in that faithful Thursday. There were 3 people in front of us so we got the last one after waiting 6 hours in the rain and cold. I even skipped school to boot! Was it worth it you ask? I'll tell you. It was worth every second that I waited.

HARDWARE
The PS2's hardware is great console wise, but lacks when compared to the other 2 consoles of this generation of consoles (GameCube, Xbox). It has 4 MB of Video RAM, which may seem like not much but it really is. The PS2 can play CD-ROM and DVD format games. It has a 128 bit CPU and 32 MB of memory. The PS2 looks cool. It's black and has the PS2 logo on the top of it.

There is one concern through many's eyes though and that is the Disc Read Error problem. Disc Read Errors or DRE, are when the PS2's laser isn't reading the games right and will not play one certain type of game. It usually happens to CD-Rom format games on most people's consoles. Usually, it is because of vast amounts of dust and not taking care of the PS2 although it sometimes is just random. This really only occurred in launch PS2's and ones near launch. The newest series of the console has claimed to fix the problem and so far, there seem to be less and less reports of Disc Read Errors. If you do happen to get one though, you can always ship your PS2 to Sony and they will fix it for a small fee.

Overall, the PS2 has great hardware.

CONTROLLER
The controller is great. It is the same DualShock from the PSX but is now called the DualShock2. I guess that was necessary since it is PlayStation2 after all. The controller set up has a great design. I, and many others, find it to be a great controller for games of all genres. The controller is overall very good and very well made and will last you a long time. The PS2 only comes with 2 controller ports so that's all you will need.

FEATURES
The PS2 has great features that come with it! The number 1 feature is the ability for it to play PlayStation 1 games. This has to be the best feature since it gives you access to 1000's of PSX games and you still have the hundreds of PS2 game already released! Another feature is the ability to play DVD's and CD's (burned CD's too). The PS2 doesn't come with 4 controller ports, but only 2. Although you can get a multi-tap, which will let you have 4 players.

There is also a Network Adapter available which will let you play games online. Some of the more popular online games are SOCOM US Navy SEALs (broadband only), Frequency, Twisted Metal: Black Online (comes free with the Network Adapter), and Madden 2003. These are just some of the many great features that PS2 has to offer. The features are great!

There is also a hard drive for PS2, but it is only released in Japan as I am writing this review. The hard drive is required to play some games online like Everquest Online and Final Fantasy XI.

Overall, there are lots of great features on the PS2.

PRICE
The PS2's launch price was $300 but eventually lowered to $200, which is the price as I am writing this review. How can you argue with $200? Hell, I couldn't argue with $350, which is how much I paid for mine at the launch of the system. I mean, there are some people who even paid close to $500 for one! The price is great!

GRAPHICS
The graphics is probably the one area where the PS2 is lacking a bit. The PS2 is the least technologically advanced of the 3 next-gen consoles (Xbox, PS2, GCN) and they definitely have better graphics than PS2 as you can see by most of the games for all of the systems when they are compared. I am not saying the graphics aren't good, because they are good. I'm just saying they aren't the best of the 3 consoles.

Graphics shouldn't really matter that much to you though and definitely shouldn't be the main factor in buying a console. The PS2, when programmed right, can provide some great graphics! Some of the more beautiful games on the PS2 are Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons Of Liberty, Final Fantasy X, and Gran Turismo 3: A-Spec. Overall, the graphics are good.

SOUND
The sound is great. PS2 supports Dolby 5.1 Surround. Most of the games on PS2 have great music. There are several games for PS2 that support surround sound and there are even speaker systems available that will enhance your PS2 gaming experience. The sound is overall good.

LOADING TIMES
The loading times vary from game to game. Most of the games seem to have average loading times. Some games on PS2 do have awful loading times though and seem to take years to load. Overall, I guess the load times are pretty good.

GAMES
The games are the PS2's greatest quality. There are so many AAA quality titles for PS2 that it is unbelievable. So far, I have around 30 PS2 games and there are so many more that I want to get! The PS2 definitely has the best and largest video game library since you could also add the PSX games in with them.

When there are good games on a console, there is always going to be crap. All you have to do is watch out for the crap and get straight to the good stuff. I would say crap games outnumber good games 2 to 1 but that isn't necessarily bad considering the number of games for PS2 alone. I would estimate around 400 already released.

Some of the PS2's better games are Grand Theft Auto III and Vice City, Metal Gear Solid 2, Gran Turismo 3, Final Fantasy X, Devil May Cry, Kingdom Hearts, Suikoden III, Twisted Metal: Black, SOCOM US Navy SEALs, and so much more. I could go on and on about all of the games. This is truly what makes the PS2 shine!

FUTURE
The future of the PS2 is great. There are so many great things coming to PS2 that it is unbelievable! One bad thing about the future is that PS3 will likely be released in 2005 or 2006 so that will mean PS2 will end up like PSX did when PS2 was released.

Game wise, the PS2's future releases are looking good. There are titles coming such as new Final Fantasy's, new Grand Theft Auto's, new Gran Turismo's, Devil May Cry 2, and so much more.

CONCLUSION
Overall, I think the PS2 is a must buy for all hardcore gamers and casual gamers alike. It is truley one of the greatest consoles ever made! Boys and girls, we are in the newest golden age of gaming!


Reviewer's Score: 10/10 | Originally Posted: 01/21/03, Updated 01/23/03


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