Hard on the heels of the 25th anniversary of the Nintendo Entertainment System comes the 10 year anniversary of the PlayStation 2. Launched on this very day back in 2000, it went on to become one of the most successful video game consoles of all time. Has it really only been 10 years? I have to admit that the console still looks cool (still love the bright LEDs on this thing), but my PS2 game boxes definitely look dated and old-school.
But this 10 year anniversary is actually 10 years and still going strong. You can still buy the PlayStation 2 today, and games are still produced for it. Think you'll still be playing on this thing in 10 more years? Why not? There are a ton of classic games on it, and yes, playing them on your PS3 in emulation mode totally counts.
Check out G4's memories of the PlayStation 2 after ten years, and then sound off in the comments below and tell us your own.
Dana Vinson: Review Guru
I never owned a PS2, but the boy I was dating at the time was obsessed with getting one. His parents wouldn’t fork over the cash, so he convinced his rich grandfather to buy him one. He went around telling all of his friends that he was getting a PS2 and that it “connected to the internet,” quietly implying that he was better than everyone else. (I guess he liked to pretend that the Dreamcast didn’t exist.) You know what game he played for months and month on his big, mighty, technologically advanced PS2? Final Fantasy Tactics, a PlayStation game. Jesus, that kid was a prick.
Jake Gaskill: Slave to the Feed
Truth be told, I never owned a PlayStation 2, so my exposure to the console and its offerings were limited to time spent at friends’ houses who did own one. However, I owe one of my fondest and dearest gaming memories to the PS2, and that would be spending countless hours at my friend’s house just listening to Chatterbox in GTA III. Even though the show’s script wasn’t terribly long, and we knew it by heart after the third or fourth run through, it so effectively transported us into the world of Liberty City that we couldn’t get enough of it. Thanks PS2!
Stephen Johnson: Resident Cantankerous Guy
Throughout my life, I've gone through phases of video game fandom. I've run the gamut from hardcore, totally obsessive, constant game-player on one end to "I'm not interested in games at all" on the other. It tends to run in roughly five year cycles. This boom and bust pattern began when I was five years old. A decade ago, I just didn't care about games.
My girlfriend at the time had a Dreamcast someone gave her. We only had Space Channel 5 and some variant of Tetris. It never occurred to me to get more games. About three years after the PlayStation 2 launched, though, I bought one on a whim. I couldn't believe what I'd been missing. This kicked off my current, all-you-can eat gaming binge. Seven years. I'm on a roll, baby.
Eric Eckstein: Whip Wielder
Ten years ago, I was in New York, working for what is now UGO Entertainment. These were during the glory start-up years where we had a huge space, lots of like-minded folks and very little executive oversight. My editorial team had a large open space adjacent to another team that worked with the UGO affiliated websites, and when our PS2 arrived, it joined the Dreamcast and Soul Calibur as a means to resolve any argument over stupid things (Where should we go eat? Should Brent wear a dress to the meeting? etc.)
The new games of choice: NHL 2001 and SSX. To the victor went more than the spoils as those games settled all bets, but it took a while before the team collectively played more PS2 games than PSOne titles in the office. Except for Kessen and I. We shared a deeply personal private relationship for a while after launch. I miss you, Kessen.
Kevin Kelly: Insert Self-Referential Joke Here
I was living in Hollywood and working at Jim Henson Pictures at the time, and I wanted one of these so badly, but there was a shortage and they were going for kajillions of dollars on eBay. Then, the 7-11 on our corner suddenly had one of these behind their counter, to the tune of $500. Screw those guys. I briefly had fantasies of writing a stern letter to 7-11 corporate and getting a lifetime supply of free Slurpees, but my lazy gene kept me from writing it.
One of my close friends got a PS2, and that became my gateway to inviting myself over every other day. We played massive amounts of SSX over and over again. I'm not sure exactly why that game was so mesmerizing, but we found just about every way possible to score points in that game. Then my friend discovered the light show you could activate when listening to a CD on his normal PlayStation, and he quickly turned his living room into something akin to the Pink Floyd laser light show. It was hard to get game time in after that.
Rob Manuel: X-Play Laser Beam
Ten years ago I was sitting in a dorm room, squinting at a medium-size TV, and playing split screen GoldenEye for the N64. We would never know the touch of a PS2 until many semesters later. And even then, some guy in a green outfit calling himself Master Chief would gain most of our attention.
Matt Keil: X-Play Plasma Bolt
I was in Woodland Hills playing Dreamcast games, due to the fact that the PS2 had one of the worst launch lineups ever. I didn't get a PS2 until the Gran Turismo 3 bundle came out in Summer 2001. Currently I own somewhere in the neighborhood of 200 PS2 games. What a difference ten years make.
Mike D'Alonzo: Attack of the Awesome
Ten years ago, when I got my PS2, it was as a wedding gift back in Austin, Texas. I went off to direct a play for the first four months of our wedded relationship, and my wife took that time to become an expert at Tiger Woods. Not like an expert, ha ha, sure, but a f***ing expert. I would bring people over who thought they knew what they were doing, and she would routinely beat them by about 20 strokes. It was fun to watch them get schooled by a married woman.
I remember going to Best Buy with my dad for some trivial reason knowing that we were going to leave with a PS2. My dad did not know that. I used Medal of Honor: Frontline to convince him that the PS2 was the only thing missing from his life. He's a sucker for war shooters so it didn't take too much convincing to get him to buy the PS2. Making him buy me Spyro took some extra whining, something 13-year-old me was surprising good at.
That however isn't where the story for my PS2 ends. At the time my brother was seven and didn't know how to properly take care of a disc. When our Budokai disc got scratched he decided that covering it in peanut butter and putting back in the PS2 would do the trick. Spoiler alert: It didn't. It ruined the game and broke the PS2. That was the day my second PS2 was born ...
Moye Ishimoto: Blogger Extremus
10 years ago, I was sitting in some college dorm room, waiting for my friends to finish playing Madden or some football game on the Dreamcast. I remember when one guy showed up with his new PS2 and being impressed by how sleek and thin the console was. AND it played DVDs! Talk about technological advancement. I hadn't really started playing games yet, but as a fashion conscious girl (at the time), I liked how the PS2 looked. It was like the skinny pretty girl in the room that outshined the squatty, round little Sega console.
Leah Jackson: Game Cap Lab Bouncer
When the PS2 came out it was before I really was into gaming, probably because I was just 12 years old. The first game that I played on the PS2 was actually Final Fantasy 10 about a year after the system came out. It was also the first Final Fantasy I had ever played and it completely blew my mind. The music, graphics, crazy story, characters, everything was so new and awesome to me. Looking back on it, FFX has a lot of flaws, but as my first real RPG I thought it was awesome. PS2 was definitely the most influential console for me. Having the experience I did with FFX, going and getting all the ultimate items and getting super involved with every aspect of that game really opened my eyes to gaming and how fun it could be.
Chris Monfette: Preview Magoo
I was at Fordham University yawning my way through the beginning of yet another year and hoping desperately for something to come along and distract me from actual schoolwork. Enter: the PS2 and Metal Gear Solid: Sons of Liberty. Exit: productivity.