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For reasons and in ways I need not delve into here, I made the sky open up and rain money down upon me. Lots and lots of money. Enough money to get me out of debt and leave me with almost a grand to disperse however I saw fit. I could have done many things with this leftover cash: I could have bought new tires for my car that desperately needs new tires, I could have paid off all of this upcoming semester of school, but instead, I bought a Playstation 3. I am Yoda wise.

I didn’t just go out and get any old PS3 either, I had to get one that was backwards compatible with PS2 games and so my only option was the $500, 80gig Metal Gear Solid bundle. The funny part is that I have absolute no concrete reason as to why I bought a PS3. I wanted a Blu Ray player that was firmware upgradeable and the Playstation 3 is one of the few on the market. The fact that it played games was just gravy for me because I already have a 360 Elite sitting around, calling out for me to play more Call of Duty 4.

This is my dilemma: I have a really high tech piece of equipment sitting in my living room that I have no real good use for other than watching movies on. What in the hell else do I do with it?

The cold hard truth is that the Playstation 3 has a gaming library about as solid as the cardboard box that I saw a homeless guy sleeping in on my way from work. All of the good games for it are also on the Xbox and odds are good that I own most of them. The next obvious suggestion would be to start looking into the Playstation 2 games that drove me to buying that specific system in the first place. Here, I run into several issues.

First, I am one step away from despising most Japanese role-playing games and that wipes out a chunk of the good PS2 titles. Sports games and shooters are also out for the most part. That leaves me with the Katamari games, Ico, Shadow of the Colossus, and Okami. I also like the Resident Evil games and the survival horror genre in general but other than Silent Hill there isn’t much out there in the way of cool survival horror.

I think in the end, I bought this monolithic gaming system as an investment – some time, somehow, there will be some kick ass titles released for it that won’t come out for the Xbox. Right now the only one that has me sold is Little Big Planet. I guess I am writing this less as an article or blurb and more as a plea. What the hell do I do with this thing now that I have it? I had a PS2 long ago but didn’t have a ton of games for it and so I don’t feel I have a comfortable knowledge of the Playstation library.

If you have a PS3 what do you do with it? If you know of a unique PS2 game that you like, I wanna hear it. I am open to any genre but all I ask is that if you suggest a JRPG, make it one that is unique and doesn’t have a ton of cut scenes that last more than five minutes. I sold Metal Gear Solid 4 without even opening it for that reason but I am thinking about trying Disgaea 3 because I have heard good things about that series.

Right now, all I have is Warhawk (it sucks because Call of Duty 4 does it all better) and Midnight Club 3: Dub Edition Remix. I am a sucker for Midnight Club. Oh, one more thing, I don’t want to hear comments like, “Why did you even buy the system if you had no good reason to?” I know I am an idiot but I am an idiot with spare cash and the habits of a 14 year old, can you really blame me? So please, help an idiot out and give me some suggestions as to what to do with this paperweight.

14 Comments

  1. christian said on September 15, 2008:

    I’ll do my best. Same model PS3 right here.

    As for games, I have MGS4 of course, Warhawk, Virtua Fighter 5 and Soul Calibur 4. One of those is better on the 360, and the other has Darth Vader. Warhawk is a pretty great MP game that still receives support. I also downloaded Bionic Commando Rearmed for it, because the PS2 d-pad is preferred.

    For future games, I want to get Ninja Gaiden Sigma, Wipeout HD, Pixeljunk Eden, and Burnout Paradise, which gets its updates quicker than on 360 and will be soon available for download rather than buying on disc. There is also Ratchet and Clank, Folklore, and the PSN remake of Siren: Blood Curse, which looks like good survival horror. Its also getting Silent Hill 5. You have to play Uncharted as well.

    I also use it for music. Before my PS3, we would stream music off my roomate’s PC to his 360, but it wasn’t always reliable. I’ve loaded a shit ton of albums onto that 80 gig harddrive, and have the easiest party music I’ve ever had to set up.

  2. Tyson said on September 16, 2008:

    I am glad you said Wipeout HD, I am also waiting for that one. Since it has been a few days since I wrote this blurb, I have come to find that a lot of the original Playstation Network games have higher production values than many of the XBL titles. Do you know of a good website that just covers PSN stuff? Or better still, do you know of a good Playstation 3 site that is still slightly objective in their reviews? A big problem I am encountering is in finding a site that can tell me which system to buy a given game on that doesn’t automatically use fanboy-dom as their reason to do so.

    Thanks for the heads-up on the Siren game, I will look into that one as well.

    Keep the suggestions coming people…please!

  3. Christian said on September 16, 2008:

    Joystiq’s PS3 fanboy will cover the PSN games, but their reviews are bullshit (its Joystiq).

    If you want survival horror, try the Clock Tower games on PS2. Or Fatal Frame.

    How about classic shooters like Gradius V?

  4. pat said on September 16, 2008:

    im a little surprised christian was given the opportunity to recommend ps2 games and has not yet mentioned god hand.

    there are plenty of ps2 games worth playing, and you have mentioned a couple already (ico/sotc, katamari, okami). psychonauts is one of my favorites for its creativity and cleverness. prince of persia: sands of time is pretty good also.

  5. Stefan said on September 23, 2008:

    I just got my fourth PS3 last week. Admittedly I use them for computation, but I kept the console OS on them with dual-boot options because I figured having them around I’d naturally want to play games on them. Given my taste in games, however, this really ended up being restricted to old PS2 titles I’d never had a chance to play in my own living room before, like katamari, shadow of the colossus, culdcept, and okami. (I have psychonauts for PC) Little Big Planet may change that and actually become the first blu-ray game I purchase, over a year after having bought my first PS3. I know I’m not the most mainstream demographic, but I had expected them to be far more successful at selling me games once the console was in my home.

  6. TrueTallus said on September 25, 2008:

    Apologies in advance for the wall of text.

    A unique PS3 feature you can enjoy without having to buy anything comes into play if you have any interest in listening to music on your console- it apparently allows you to enjoy the futuristic wonder of fast forwarding music instead of having to skip tracks al-la the 360:)

    Pat is definitely right about Godhand, Tyson. It’s a great, constantly entertaining brawler, though if you don’t like difficult games you might want to rent it first. There have been so many crazy games released on the PS2 over the years that it doesn’t seem hard to come up with a dozens of off the wall games that are still fun enough that you should give them a spin. I’m not sure where you fall on the playability vs ingenuity spectrum, Tyson, but there are certainly more than a few titles of at least reasonable quality that you might want to give a try if your looking for something interesting to put in your shiny new hardware.

    Since you like survival horror and don’t seem averse to spending your money on things with dubious usefulness ;), you might want to try Lifeline and a usb headset. Its sort of an adventure game with combat shoved in that has the player using the headset to issue commands to a space station stewardess while trapped in the station’s master control room trying to stop evil “alien” infestation. Think of it as second person Kings Quest IV in space, with giant evil pill bugs. The combat is kinda clunky, but if you don’t mind the predictable adolescent preoccupations a Japanese game based around slimy monsters and stewardess’s might fall prey to or the frustration inherent in combining the already stubborn mechanics of the interactive fiction genre with voice recognition, you’ll be in for a treat. Using the headset creates an amazingly intuitive connection to the things going on in-game and there are enough immersive environmental details, genuinely convincing character development from the leading lady and crazy jumping tongue monsters to make playing through the adventure a uniquely compelling experience.

    A few more suggestions off the top of my head (though in less detail) would be:

    Way of the Samurai for a fun, short, weapons based brawler with a great way of making decisions have actual consequences that can’t be solved with simple reloading and enough branching paths and unique weapons to make replaying a treat and an adventure.

    Shadow of Destiny if you want to go through a fun adventure game with lots of time travel. Like most adventure games, it has it’s share of “What am I supposed to do now?” moments, but the satisfaction of old style time travel solutions (make tree based assassination attempt a non-issue by stopping the tree from being planted in the first place) and the surprising amount of actual choices in the story more than make up for it.

    Frequency and Amplitude if you enjoy electronic music and/or rhythm games. Rock Band and Guitar Hero are great, but Harmonix’ original titles (Frequency in particular) have a grass roots appeal, focused track selection and more robust gameplay that gives them a unique flavor in the now somewhat oversaturated music game menu. Very definitely worth a go if you don’t get headaches from flashing lights.

    Kings Field and the Ancient City if you want to try out an emotive, no hands holding, zero explanation, completely exploration based Japanese take on the first person RPG. You won’t find quest logs, five hundred skill meters or Patrick Steward telling you how amazing you are, but you will find a adventure bubbling over with weird monsters, cool unique gear, death at every turn and huge doses of atmosphere and wonder that are built through an amazing game world not cut scenes or tedious exposition.

    There are certainly plenty more; the Playstation 2 excelled (and continues to excell) at being an amazing dumping ground for a vast collection of the oddest and most cincere gaming gems. If I have more time tommarrow, I’ll throw out a few others that might not pop up instantly on metacritic.

    Not to get off topic, but as an aside I’m really curious about how (and why) someone uses PS3s for computational purposes, Stefan. Have you been gutting the poor things and using their innards to forms some hideous super computer? And why do you need four? Do they have a problem analagous to the 360 RRoD or are they all working fine and having multiple consoles is useful for the mysterious experiments you alluded to?

  7. jay said on September 25, 2008:

    Thanks for reminding me I need Shadow of Destiny. Time Hollow for the DS is reportedly by the same guy/people.

  8. shota said on September 25, 2008:

    I’m surprised no one mentioned the Onimusha series. Excellent stuff. And the early games have a bit of a spooky atmosphere so your survival genre craving might be satiated as well, Tyson. I favor Onimusha I and III.

  9. christian said on September 25, 2008:

    I haven’t bothered with Onimusha 3 because 2 was so bad. I did enjoy the first.

  10. pat said on September 25, 2008:

    i have played one and a half onimusha games, and i did thoroughly enjoy the first. i think christian is a little hard on 2, but it is a bit silly and certainly inferior to the first.

    those sound like some good suggestions TT. with the unusual gameplay and mediocre review scores, a couple of them are right up my alley.

  11. TrueTallus said on September 27, 2008:

    I’m glad some of those games sound like they might be up your alley, Pat. Most PS2 stuff is cheep enough now a days to make taking a risk on a neat idea worth it.

    A handful of others that come to mind as useful in making the PS3 live up to its ‘heritage’ reputation:

    Try Sly Cooper 1 for a great, tightly designed platformer with a slight stealth twist. Add in a thoroughly catchy sense of style, excellent unlockables (a fairly large set of developer commentaries), and a willingness to end the game at its high point and you’re probably looking at the best 2 1/2D platformers in the tradition of the PS1 Crash Bandicoot games are going to get. Later entries in the series concentrated on story elements, open world shenanigans and poorly designed non-platforming content to keep up with the changing face of the jumping and collecting crap genre and are not as whole heartedly recommendable.

    Mark of Kri if you have any affection for puzzle like stealth games but are tired of being a pushover in an open fight. The game centers around navigating its stealthy burly barbarian protagonist Rau though a variety of lush locales by using his mystic seeing eye bird to scout ahead for upcoming enemies and then sneaking up on and murdering said enemies via brutal and delightfully well animated execution maneuvers. Thankfully the game doesn’t always force you to take to the shadows and has a similarly bloodthirsty and satisfying combat system in place for fighting face to face. While that might sound dangerously close to Tenchu in jungle land, MoK’s gorgeously realized visual and audio design (the raucously gory animated Disney film feel is still impressive today), carefully crafted levels and satisfying brawling make it a different and more appreciable animal.

    Summoner 1 if you want to play a great RPG that feels like it should have been a classic PC game you never heard of. Huge, emotive environments and interesting, understated characters that communicate the vast and interesting game world even if the textures aren’t sharp or the hallways are too grand to be reasonable. Fun, tough, KotOResque fights with lots of numbers popping up over people’s heads ands stats whose effects aren’t adequately explained. Money is hard to come by and it feels like you can get in over your head at the drop of a hat in the beginning, but it’s clear that someone at the development team wanted you to have a great time because there’s tons of loot lying around and the locations and showdowns are just as impressive and larger than life as the manual hinted they’d be.

    I’ve got a few more that I’ll put up over the weekend, but for now I’ll leave this poor post in peace :)

  12. TrueTallus said on September 27, 2008:

    Also, thanks for the heads up about Time Hollow, Jay! I’ve been mildly curious about it since I flagged it as another DS adventure game, but knowing it’s by the same team as Shadow of Destiny definitely gives me enough reason to take a closer look.

  13. Desbox said on October 3, 2008:

    Little Big Planet is all you will need it for.

  14. SpyderMayhem said on October 9, 2008:

    Well, the PS3 has what I like to call the “Nine Days of Hell” coming up. On October 19th, Pock Band 2 is released for it. On October 26th, Guitar Hero: World Tour comes out. And on October 28th, Fallout 3 comes out. Yes, all of these are available on the XBox 360, but the release dates aren’t all scrunched together, removing the fun of flooded gamer joy coming at you all at once.

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