Sony is getting into the retro console business with the PlayStation Classic, a nostalgic look back at the company’s very first video game platform. While we know that the mini console will be out this December, Sony is still being coy about what titles will be pre-loaded in the box. Only five of the twenty games have been announced thus far.
The list of games includes Final Fantasy VII, Tekken 3, Jumping Flash, Ridge Racer Type 4, and Wild Arms. That leaves Sony with 15 more titles to reveal ahead of the Dec. 3 release date. What other games might the PlayStation Classic include? Well, we have some ideas and not all of them are the obvious choices.
Here are 20 other games that could make it onto the PlayStation Classic lineup:
1996 | Capcom
Resident Evil is widely regarded as the game that first brought survival horror to mainstream audiences and put this very special genre on the map. The game is gripping and terrifying, thanks to a fixed camera that only allows the player to see what the developers want you to see, which allow zombies and other assorted ghouls to creep up on you at any given moment (the zombie dog scene is still one of the scariest scenes in gaming history.) Despite the questionable FMV cutscenes and voice acting, the game is still a must-play so many years later.
Metal Gear Solid
1998 | Konami
Metal Gear Solid may be video game auteur Hideo Kojima’s defining moment in the gaming industry. While not the first entry in the stealth series and arguably not even the best of the Metal Gear games, it’s the title that made Snake synonymous with the PlayStation brand. Indeed, no PlayStation era has gone without a Metal Gear game and it all comes back to this installment, which brought Kojima’s signature brand of stealth action to 3D and delivered the twisted story full of strange villains and soap opera melodrama that would become the formula for Metal Gear storytelling for years to come.
Castlevania: Symphony of the Night
1997 | Konami
Although the franchise’s roots lie in the 8-bit era, it’s the PlayStation’s first Castlevania game that is often regarded as the very best the series has to offer. A sequel to 1993’s Rondo of Blood, the game stars Alucard, the son of Dracula, and he is on a quest to bring down his father’s castle once and for all. If that’s not enough to make you scramble for a copy (you can find a digital copy pretty easily these days), Symphony of the Night is also responsible for solidifying the Metroidvania genre that’s still a mainstay of the gaming industry today. Oh, and there’s a pretty crazy twist midway through the game that will leave new players speechless.
1999 | Konami
Wow, we didn’t realize how Konami-heavy this list was going to be, but Silent Hill is indeed another title from the Japanese publisher that’s a cant-miss PlayStation title. While Resident Evil is the father of modern survival horror, Silent Hill offers a different kind of survival horror experience. Protagonist Harry Mason isn’t a specially trained police officer out to put the dead back in their graves but a regular guy who is looking for his daughter in the world’s most haunted town. The game also makes great use of a fixed camera angle as well as a radio mechanic that alerts you to the proximity of enemies. Hearing static on that radio will make anyone’s heart beat faster…
1998 | Square
Square is responsible for some of the best JRPG titles released on the PlayStation, as you’ll see below, but Parasite Eve is unlike anything else the famed studio put out on the console. With Parasite Eve, Square mixed elements of horror with classic JRPG gameplay, such as a time-based real-time combat system, creating a whole new kind of experience that was a departure from what the studio had put out before. The story is crazy, too. It begins with an entire audience spontaneously combusting inside of an opera house and it only gets weirder from there.
Crash Team Racing
1999 | Naughty Dog
Yes, we had to include a Crash Bandicoot game. After all, Crash was the unofficial face of PlayStation for a little while. Nintendo had Mario, Sega had Sonic, PlayStation had the whimsical Crash. But it’s not the myriad Crash platformers released for the PlayStation that marks the bandicoot’s best outing. It’s Crash Team Racing, the kart racer that gave Mario Kart 64 a run for its money back in the ’90s. The game was your standard kart racing fare but with excellent controls and graphics that helped the title become one of the most noteworthy entries in the genre.
Twisted Metal 2
1996 | SingleTrac
Speaking of racing games, forget about them completely because Twisted Metal 2 brought a whole other brand of vehicular mayhem to the PlayStation. The game pits outrageous vehicles packed with weapons against each other in a demolition derby packed with explosions and corpses that only ends when there’s only one maniac left on the road. Vehicles include Axel, an insane two-wheeled contraption held up by its driver’s own body, and the killer ice cream truck driven by a mad clown. Yeah, Twisted Metal 2 is delightful, especially if you’ve got a friend to blow yourself up with.
1996 | Konami
Policenauts is another kind of sci-fi tale from Kojima. This graphic adventure game takes place on a space colony and stars an astronaut-turned-private investigator who must find his ex-wife’s murderer. Like all Kojima games, the path to the killer leads main character Jonathan Ingram to a much deeper conspiracy. Policenauts is definitely Kojima’s least gameplay-heavy title, as you don’t do much more than point and click, but the game’s imaginative story and the beautiful art design make this another must-play from Konami. The catch is that the publisher has never released this game outside of Japan and probably isn’t planning to any time soon after Kojima’s rough exit from the company a few years ago.
Spyro the Dragon
1998 | Insomniac Games
Who could forget about little Spyro? Released during the golden age of 3D platformers, Spyro the Dragon was only Insomniac Games’ second outing, and it was a sign of things to come because Spyro is tons of fun. Yes, it’s your standard 3D platformer fare, but that’s actually a boon these days since the genre has pretty much gone the way of the dinosaur.
Resident Evil 2
1998 | Capcom
We might be cheating by including a second Resident Evil game, but we don’t care. Resident Evil 2, the installment that introduced Leon S. Kennedy, Claire Redfield, Ada Wong, and Raccoon City proper to the series, is awesome. Following up such a seminal title was never going to be easy, but Resi 2 does it in style, improving on many of the gameplay elements that made the original great while also adding branching paths that provided unique challenges for each of the two protagonists. You could play through the game twice and have very different experiences both times! If Resi 2 is a little too old for you, Capcom is putting out a remake that’s absolutely spectacular.
1999 | Sony Bend Studio
The PlayStation’s “other” espionage game is often unfairly overlooked. This more action-oriented spy title has aged roughly in some areas, but the title’s odd sense of humor and fun shines through any design deficiencies. Besides, who doesn’t love setting a guard on fire with a taser? Syphon Filter was surpassed by some of its sequels, but the sequel is worthy of an inclusion for historical purposes.
Final Fantasy Tactics
1998 | Square
There’s a strong argument to be made that Final Fantasy Tactics is the greatest console strategy game ever made. This classic utilized certain elements of the Final Fantasy series (like the job system and grand fantasy story) and combined them with a nearly flawless grid-based combat system. The result is a deep and satisfying strategy experience that deserves to stand tall with the PlayStation’s best.
2000 | Square
Once upon a time, we named Vagrant Story the most underrated PS1 game ever made. It’s well past time that this true gem of the PS1 library gets a second chance. This fascinating dungeon crawler RPG utilizes a revolutionary combat system, surprisingly deep story, and infamous degree of difficulty to deliver an experience that has never really been replicated or surpassed in terms of the overall package it offers.
Gran Turismo 2
1999 | Polyphony Digital
Gran Turismo was a driving simulation revolution, but Gran Turismo 2 improved upon it in just about every conceivable way. Gran Turismo 2’s collection of 650 cars is impressive to this day, and it’s courses rank among the series best. On top of that, you get some of the most devious license tests ever devised for a racing game. Anyone who has tried to take the Dodge Viper around the hairpin turn at Laguna Seca knows what I’m talking about.
Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 2
2000 | Neversoft
As tempting as it is to include the original Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater for nostalgia’s sake, our hearts belong to Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 2. Some have called this sequel the greatest game of all-time, and we don’t think that crowd has lost their mind. This is a fast, fun, and creative arcade-style extreme sports game that is just as addictive today as it is when it blew our minds in 2000.
2000 | Neversoft
We recently referred to this as the most underrated superhero game of all-time, so why not include it with the PS1. If the obvious license issues can be resolved, then gamers everywhere will get a chance to experience a title that still stands as gaming’s greatest love letter to the comic book medium. Spider-Man is a gorgeous, silly, and genuinely fun title that feels like a somewhat unofficial adaptation of the old Spider-Man animated series.
PaRappa the Rapper
1997 | NanaOn-Sha
PaRappa the Rapper is slightly outdated, corny, and arguably inferior to its spin-off, Um Jammer Lammy. However, this is a game that you need to play if you’re trying to understand the legacy of the PlayStation. This visually appealing (at the time) and inventive rhythm title offered gamers everywhere something they probably hadn’t really seen before. PaRappa the Rapper helped sell the PlayStation as something special.
1999 | Sony Japan Studio
PlayStation never featured a platformer as brilliant as Super Mario 64, but in this writer’s humble opinion, Ape Escape is as close as Sony came to hitting that historic mark. Ape Escape is a pure collect-a-thon, but its innovative analog stick controls (it was the first game to require a DualShock controller), fresh level design, and clever capture scenarios ensured that you never felt you were simply completing a digital grocery list or settling for an inferior 3D platformer.
2000 | Square
It’s utterly bizarre that there are so many people out there who forget that there is a sequel to Chrono Trigger. While some fans lament the changes that Chrono Cross made to its almost universally beloved predecessor, Chrono Cross stands on its own as arguably the best JRPG on a console that is known for housing some of the greatest JRPG titles ever made. It’s a complicated, mature, and deep epic that you will never forget once you’ve actually played it.
Dino Crisis 2
2000 | Capcom
Undoubtedly one of the oddest inclusions on this list, Dino Crisis 2 deserves a spot on the PlayStation Classic lineup for the simple reason that it will show the world why we need another Dino Crisis game like this. Dino Crisis 2 abandoned much of the Resident Evil-lite design of its predecessor in favor of a purer arcade action experience that saw you kill as many dinosaurs as possible. It’s the Aliens of survival horror sequels.
Matthew Byrd is a staff writer for Den of Geek. He spends most of his days trying to pitch deep-dive analytical pieces about Killer Klowns From Outer Space to an increasingly perturbed series of editors. You can read more of his work here or find him on Twitter at @SilverTuna014.