The PlayStation Classic was a genuinely good idea. When announced 11 months ago, many were excited to see Sony dip into the mini console market. The original PlayStation is one of the most successful consoles ever and spawned numerous successful franchises, many of which are still going to this day. So it made sense for Sony to revisit its entry into the console market. Many thought this was a slam dunk endeavor; there were so many great titles the company could pull from to include in the mini console.
Then more details came out, and it became clear that Sony was doing this on the cheap. Real cheap. Some of the games would run the European versions, which had a slower refresh rate, the device’s features were just the bare minimum, the controllers were the less versatile original models as opposed to the DualShock controllers and the list of games was disappointing. Maybe not flat out bad, but there were too many notable titles missing. Upon release, the console bombed, and it’s now not unusual to find it on sale for as low as $20 online, a huge drop from its initial $100 price tag. It seems unlikely the company will make another classic console anytime soon. But Sony should.
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There were many looking forward to the PlayStation Classic. The product that was sold was just subpar. Sony should release a PlayStation Classic 2.0 of sorts and do it properly. Firstly, there needs to be a much stronger lineup included in this set up than before. Sony should bargain with Activision for at least one title from both the Crash Bandicoot and Spyro the Dragon series. They were the face of the console back then, and those games need to be included. Sequels to titles already included, specifically Twisted Metal and Resident Evil Director’s Cut, should also be included, as they were often more popular and/or better than those original games.
Secondly, more features should be included. If the PlayStation Classic 2 is going to be an emulator, it should come with the rich features those normally possess, including multiple save states, display options such as scanlines, smoothing effects and full screen options. Any PlayStation Classic 2 should also probably stick to matching the region of the games to that of the sale. Or, if Sony does want to include different regional versions, the console should at least have a feature allowing players to switch between them. These can all help increase the value of the console and make it more enticing.
Finally, the DualShock 1 is the way to go in terms of a controller. Although the PlayStation’s original controller is by no means bad, a lot of games require the DualShock, like Ape Escape and Gran Turismo, for instance. Using the DualShock will allow more of the console’s memorable games. Plus, the two analog sticks will make playing games a lot more enjoyable.
Sony should take a look at what the homebrew crowd is doing with the PlayStation Classic now, which shows there’s still a market for a product like this. However, there is a way to do a classic console, and there’s a way not to do it. A good PlayStation Classic could really tap into the sense of nostalgia people feel for the titular console, but a bad one, well, that retails for $20.