Special No.2: PlayStation - recording mid-September 2018

Here's where you can submit your contributions for our new series focusing on the consoles themselves.
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Special No.2: PlayStation - recording mid-September 2018

Post by JaySevenZero » May 29th, 2018, 6:50 am

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As some of you may have already heard, we're creating a series of podcast specials, this time the focus being on the consoles themselves.

The plan is for the podcast to encompass the history of the chosen system from launch through its evolution, mixed with the panels personal perspective of their time spent with it. There will also be discussion of some of the stand-out titles for the system.

As with the regular Cane and Rinse podcast, we'd like to include contributions from you, our community, too. So we've created this sub forum and thread so you can leave us your most memorable moments spent with the systems we're covering.

Our fourth show is covering the original Sony PlayStation.

All being well, we'll be recording this September. So If you have something to say about this system this is where you should leave it.

As with the others, this will be also a timed exclusive for our Patreon, with each special being released on our regular feed only once the next one is published, so if ever there was a time to give us just 75p a month, this could be it! :)

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Re: Special No.2: PlayStation

Post by ToQi » May 29th, 2018, 11:28 am

Electronics Boutique in Harrow... Resident Evil, WipEout, and Soul Blade... not a bad start to my relationship with the PlayStation family, which persists to this day. Games had come so far in terms of design and tech, but there were still evident limitations, like the puny draw distance in Tenchu and G-Police; loading times in Riven and Street Fight Alpha 2; and the crunky 3D of so many titles.

But, above all, there were the console's landmark games that I'll never forget: ISS Pro, Gran Turismo, Metal Gear Solid, Tomb Raider, Ridge Racer Type 4, Resident Evil 2, Tekken 3... and the horizon-broadening blockbuster that changed it all for me and many others — Final Fantasy VII. A great console, and a golden age of developers defining the qualities of series that would persist to today.

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Re: Special No.2: PlayStation

Post by kintaris » May 29th, 2018, 2:08 pm

The arrival of Sony's PlayStation in my life will be forever seared into my memory - Christmas Day in Dubai, in a time before the state had been properly gentrified by billionaires. My family and I had been flown out by the bank my Dad worked for, and we hadn't seen him for several months. Christmas in a cold white apartment with 40-degree heat wilting a tiny plastic Christmas tree on a balcony overlooking a silent swimming pool. The city ground to a standstill as Ramadan began. Venturing into the streets felt like exploring a post-apocalyptic wasteland.

My Dad was trying to reconnect to sons that really hadn't seen him all that much recently, and were now spending Christmas in the most un-Christmassy way possible. So he went big. I remember South Park plushies and Simpsons books, I remember a giant 3D foam puzzle of the Millennium Falcon... and I remember the PlayStation, this little light grey piece of plastic somehow containing the vibrant chaos of Crash Bandicoot.

I still remember the first time the traditional side-scrolling platformer twisted around. Crash was running TOWARDS the screen, with a boulder crashing along behind him - and it wasn't the pixelly quasi-3D of Sonic the Hedgehog 2 and 3's bonus stages, it felt like something much more real and intense. The new perspective blew my tiny mind, much like those early cinema-goers fleeing from a film of an oncoming train. I beat the game within a couple of days, and we celebrated my success in an otherwise empty restaurant, attempting to eat a cake that I'd get for free if I finished it myself. The entire waiting staff stood around the table staring at me with interest, and probably no small amount of hunger given that they and everyone else in the city was in the middle of a religious fast.

The next day I personally haggled with an electronics salesman for a copy of Command & Conquer. He had no idea what it was, only that I desperately wanted it. I walked out with it for less than £2 in today's money - not bad for a ten-year-old I thought. Meanwhile my brother had found an unexploded grenade in the parking lot and terrified the life out of my mother. We argued over who had had the most productive day while fighting over the controller as we took on the menacing Brotherhood of Nod.

I don't really remember the day I bought any other console, but the utterly bizarre circumstances around which I received my PlayStation will stay with me forever.
Sam Quirke - @kintaris

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Re: Special No.2: PlayStation

Post by Suits » May 29th, 2018, 2:15 pm

kintaris wrote:
May 29th, 2018, 2:08 pm
The arrival of Sony's PlayStation in my life will be forever seared into my memory....
Cool post man.
Xbox - Suits
PSN - Suterovich
Nintendo Switch - SW-0866-4803-1890
N3DS - 5370-1662-1949

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Re: Special No.2: PlayStation

Post by JaySevenZero » May 29th, 2018, 3:24 pm

Stellar post Kintaris, exactly the kind of thing we want for these shows too!

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Re: Special No.2: PlayStation

Post by Spacefarer » May 29th, 2018, 9:46 pm

My memories of the PlayStation are, unfortunately, a bit more vague than Kintaris' recollections. I'll have a go, though.

I probably got mine quite late on. Considering the games I had for it (which we'll get onto), I'd say it was around 2001-02...by which point, the PS2 was at large.

My first encounter with the system was at my friend's house, where we played a variety of games: amongst them were Crash Team Racing, Tony Hawk's Skateboarding, and some corny vehicular combat game called Grudge Warriors. Up until that point, I'd been a proud member of the PC Master Race, but this rinky-dink grey box had manage to sway me.
Crash Team Racing was the standout from that lot, so, naturally, I had to have a PlayStation of my own. Obviously Jazz Jackrabbit 2 wasn't pushing the right buttons any more...plus, my dad was probably fed up of me constantly destroying his computer. If I was going to break something, I might as well break my own thing, right?

I was enamoured by the packaging. I remember spending ages staring at the back of the box, drinking in all the screenshots of the various games that were available on launch. (Side note: not sure why I was looking at the box instead of, y'know, playing it...)
Being about six years old, and being used to shareware discs containing tons of games, I assumed that they all came with the system - not so. The games I remember getting with it were WipEout 2097; Gran Turismo 2; Battletanx: Global Assault; Tomb Raider; Grand Theft Auto...and the one I played almost exclusively, Crash Bandicoot.

The orange marsupial practically replaced my favourite green bunny at that point. I loved Crash. I spent hours upon hours playing it in my parents' bedroom - evidently, I wasn't allowed to use the big telly downstairs, so I used my mum's postage-stamp-sized CRT which wouldn't work unless a specifically-shaped splinter of wood was jammed into the power switch. Didn't matter. I played it. Aaaaaaand...I never got very far in it. But I'll save that story 'til the eventual Crash Bandicoot episode.

Later on, I ended up with all the other Crash games. My dad took me and my brother to a second-hand shop - possibly Computer Exchange - and that's when I got my own copy of CTR, as well as Lego Racers, an old PC favourite of mine. My brother walked away with Crash 3, and the obsession began again. I didn't end up getting Crash 2 until 2008, as a reward for earning a black belt in karate. In and amongst all this, I played various other games when I went to my cousin's house: games such as GTA 2, Vigilante 8, V2000, and probably some sports and racing games, too. He also played some of my games when he came over here, and showed me how to play Tomb Raider. I didn't end up playing it because I didn't like blood very much back then.

That's not to say I stopped playing PC, by the way. Just played less of it.

Somewhere in this trainwreck of a timeline, there's a Spyro-shaped hole. Spyro: Year of the Dragon was another of my favourites, and remains so alongside Crash. I also picked up the first Spyro game somewhere along the line, and while I played a decent amount of it...it's the sort of series you really need to play in order. Playing the third one first just meant I was a bit disappointed with the first. Again, I didn't get the second one until very recently, when my mum got it me for my birthday a few years back.

And that's not even getting onto the wonderful demo discs. These probably didn't last too long once I started getting a decent library of proper games, but they're an interesting and nostalgic curio that deserve a second look. I distinctly remember seeing a couple of games that I really wanted to play: Tombi 2, and Team Buddies. Both quite obscure games, to the point that when I asked my mum for Tombi 2, my brother thought I was on about Tomb Raider. The disc only had a video for the former, but for the latter there was - gasp! - a playable demo! I got a lot out of that demo, which is a surprise because nobody would play with me. Team Buddies commands some not-insubstantial prices these days, but compared to Tombi's market value, it's mere chump change.

So, all in all, I had a ton of fun with the PlayStation. I got a lot out of it, and its wibbly polygons and blocky textures are still charming to this day. It's given me some wonderful memories, introduced me to some of my absolute favourite games and characters ever, and I continue to find new awesome games for it even now. Heck, in 2010 I bought a game on Steam, one that I'd previously played (and couldn't get past the second screen of) at someone's house. That game was Abe's Oddysee, and again, it's one of my all-time classics. As of this year, I'm slowly working my way through Symphony of the Night, which Benj Edwards - of Retronauts fame - claims is the greatest game ever made.

It can't beat Doom II, but it can surely try.

Geez, so much for vague...
Check out my YouTube channel, Broken Circus, for obscure games and retro hardware ramblings!

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Re: Special No.2: PlayStation

Post by rob25X » May 30th, 2018, 1:02 pm

Two words come to my mind... Ridge Racer!

Although the PS1 had a huge library of classics nothing stood out for me throughout the consoles life quite like Ridge Racer. 1995-2000 the original game was rarely out of my console.

As a young boy in the months before the PS1's release I could not stay away from the arcade cabinet. When I finally got my PlayStation with Ridge Racer I was amazed. It was incredible to see such a stunning looking game on a home console.


There were many great racers on PS1 (for example WipEout 2097) and although there were many Ridge sequels that added more to the formula, the simplicity and arcade perfect experience of the first game could not be beaten.

My other standout memories of PS1 would be the console start up sound, the great controller design, Resident Evil, Final Fantasy VII and many other amazing games.
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Re: Special No.2: PlayStation

Post by Spacefarer » June 1st, 2018, 10:42 am

rob25X wrote:
May 30th, 2018, 1:02 pm
the console start up sound
Mate, that sound will always be nostalgic to me. Though the DS is a close second...!
Check out my YouTube channel, Broken Circus, for obscure games and retro hardware ramblings!

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Re: Special No.2: PlayStation - recording mid-September 2018

Post by Jobobonobo » June 26th, 2018, 9:39 pm

Like the Mega Drive, I never owned the original Playstation but was introduced to it through friends. I still remember vividly when I first encountered this sexy new generation of 3D graphics. My friend had a Formula one game and Tekken and I was blown away. They also had a demo disc where you could play around with a 3D model of a T rex and a manta ray which truly showed off the power of this little grey box. This was the future.

For me, it was truly the demo discs that I remember most vividly about the PS1. My friend would buy the Official Playstation Magazine every month with its free demo disc full of delights. This is what introduced me to some truly fun and unique titles such as Parappa the Rapper, Kula World, Rival Schools, Klonoa and Tombi! I also saw the value of demos in that they also were a pre emptive warning for games that were less than stellar such as the abysmal Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker.

It cannot be underestimated the effects the PS1 had on gaming as a whole. For one thing, it made videogames a lot more appealing to the general public as its huge variety of titles made sure no matter what your tastes; the Playstation was the console for you. Among this variety of titles were titles such as Resident Evil, Tenchu, Grand Theft Auto, Tomb Raider and many more that showed that games were growing up and that they were no longer the domain of kids and/or nerdy introverts. Also of note was that genres that were considered niche fully entered the mainstream such as survival horror, stealth and especially noteworthy, the JRPG. Before Final Fantasy VII, Europe had little contact with the JRPG and if it was not for its success, it is likely that European gamers would still consider them a bizarre little curiosity and would remain stuck in the dark ages where these games would never bless our shores. As for me, I never got to play FF VII but my friends would tell me the adventures they had of facing giant monsters of various kinds and summoning various creatures to take them on. This sounded really intriguing but I sadly missed out on this phenomenon. My introduction to the JRPG was the equally influential Pokemon Red instead.

Aside from messing around with demos, my go to titles for me and my friends were the Tekken series, Ape Escape, Driver, Time Crisis, Gran Turismo and the Crash Bandicoot series. The third dimension truly expanded the possibilities of what games could do and laid the groundwork for new gameplay styles and more immersive worlds. The influence the PS1 had on the industry was undeniable and can still be felt to this day. While the magic of the graphics has diminished over time in this era of 4K HD, many games on the system still hold up wonderfully and I would happily recommend them to anyone who learns to adjust their eyes to those blocky polygons. Me personally, while certain games such as Tomb Raider have aged dramatically graphics-wise, other titles such as Parappa the Rapper and Ape Escape are still quite pleasant to look at. I find that the less realistic the graphics in this era, the better they hold up which is an observation that can be equally applied to the N64. While the Mega Drive was what nurtured my love of videogames, it was the PS1 with its 3D graphics and new gameplay that this enabled that convinced me that games were to have a great and exciting future and to stick around for the ride.

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Re: Special No.2: PlayStation - recording mid-September 2018

Post by Flabyo » July 2nd, 2018, 6:15 pm

The PlayStation existing is the reason my career happened at all, so I’ll probably have something to say here, I just need some time to think about how to phrase it.

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