Sony’s PlayStation 2 celebrates its 20th anniversary this year, and what a legacy it holds – it was the best-selling console of all time and sold over 155 million units. Many people have debated that it was the backward compatibility to play PlayStation games and the ability to play DVDs, but it was arguably the diverse and expansive library of games that drew so many to purchase it.
As a sixth-generation console, it competed with Sega’s Dreamcast, Nintendo’s GameCube, and Microsoft’s original Xbox. Despite the competition, the PlayStation 2 is known as one of the greatest consoles, with some of the most interesting game titles to go with it. Here are five of the best games from the PlayStation 2.
5. RESIDENT EVIL OUTBREAK
Resident Evil Outbreak (2003), set between the events of Resident Evil 2 (1998) and Resident Evil 3 (1999), has players take control of eight different characters that have unique abilities. Featuring online multiplayer for the first time in the series, REO possessed a more fun and light-hearted style of gameplay.
It’s a shame that Resident Evil Outbreak was never ported for recent consoles, as it’s a game that was ahead of its time with online multiplayer. Regardless, REO provided an upgrade to the typical style of gameplay associated with the series, with some much needed adjustments for the series’ fanbase.
4. GRAND THEFT AUTO: SAN ANDREAS
After the wildly successful Grand Theft Auto: Vice City (2002), the next game in the series follows former gangster CJ as he returns home following the death of his mother. Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas (2004) takes place in the fictional U.S. state of San Andreas, a location based on the real U.S. states California and Nevada. San Andreas skyrocketed the Grand Theft Auto name and added many features that are prominent in the more recent titles.
From multiplayer modes to relationships, Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas gives players the ultimate experience by completely changing the landscape of open-world action-adventure games, showing that they can be fun in a realistic setting.
3. TIMESPLITTERS 2
Following the success of the first TimeSplitters (2000), the second game went bigger and better. TimeSplitters 2 (2002) is a first-person shooter game developed by Free Radical Design and features a story mode with ten different levels. In each level, the player assumes the role of one or two characters as they attempt to stop an alien race from ruining history in various time periods.
TimeSplitters 2 is an incredibly fun game with multiple different modes and legendary co-op. With a catchy soundtrack and memorable characters, TimeSplitters 2 is a game to be remembered.
2. FINAL FANTASY X
As the tenth entry in the Final Fantasy series, Final Fantasy X (2000) had a lot to live up to. Thankfully, Final Fantasy X is a worthy title in the series with a likeable cast of characters, stunning visuals, and a fascinating story to match. In Final Fantasy X, the story follows a group of adventurers as they try to defeat a rampaging monster known as Sin.
The game completely changed the battle system and gameplay from previous installments, but set a new precedent in the series. Final Fantasy X eventually became the fastest-selling console RPG on the PlayStation 2 and even launched one of the first Final Fantasy sequels.
1. SILENT HILL 2
Released first on the PlayStation 2, Silent Hill 2 (2001) is known as one of the best games in the series. Development began on Silent Hill 2 soon after the first game had been completed. The story follows a man named James Sunderland, who goes to the mysterious Silent Hill to find his presumed deceased wife after receiving a letter from her.
Silent Hill 2 features psychological horror mixed with taboo topics and symbolism. It inspired most modern horror games and is considered among the greatest games of all time for its narrative.
Words by Charlie Vogelsang