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Why PS2 Compatibility Needs To Be On PS3

There was once a time when you could play any PlayStation game that you want on the PlayStation 3- namely PlayStation 2 and PlayStation 1 games. Since this admirable time, Sony has slowly removed the function altogether, leaving most people with PS2-less PS3’s as many of the original consoles begin to die.

Over the past year, we’ve seen many rumours floating around that Sony have has a secret firmware in their testing labs with PlayStation 2 compatibility. I, for one, would love for this to be true. There have also been rumours that this function will be embedded into another rumoured feature, a PlayStation Network Premium Service. However, there is one main reason as to why this would be bad for Sony.

PlayStation 3 needs PlayStation 2 compatibility.

A PlayStation Premium would mean that people would have to pay for its services, and having to pay for a feature that has already existed in the console and then been removed by Sony would cause an uproar, and I would certainly not be happy about it.

Back to the issue then, why Sony needs PS2 backwards compatibility in the PS3. Many people slag the PS3 off because it no longer has PS2 compatibility. It would also make the people with just a PS2 buy a PS3 (yes, there are still people like that), which would of course be beneficial as it is a bigger number of people than many think.

With E3 next week, and Sony really pushing the PS3 hard with 3D and PlayStation Move, PlayStation 2 backwards compatibility could not come at a better time.

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  • I agree. I think that maybe Sony should have a Premium “buy up.” Keep PSN free, but make a “better” version to be paid for.

  • Brian M

    Not sure what the issue is, unless of course, you’re one of the late adopters who didn’t get a launch model. I’d feel sorry for you…, but I managed to put the money together. If the options were desirable, so should you.

    It’s unfair, and hypocritical to blame Sony for an option that _was_ there in the beginning, but was ‘too expensive’ for the average (note, Average), user.

  • Chris Forbis (mensadad)

    nice write-up James.

    I have managed to NOT get a PS3 yet. 3D gets me closer but backward compatibility with the shelves of PS2 games that we have in the house would be the final straw. I’d have to get one and pick up some of the exclusive titles for it.

  • Sean

    I have the holy Grail 60 GB launch PS3 which I only got when I heard Sony was about to fuck with back-compat. At the time (late 2007), I had no other reason to own one.

  • I had been (and still am) waiting for GT5 to finally be released, but our PS2 still sees semi-regular use (used way more than our Wii) and there aren’t enough inputs even on out <1yr old HDTV to hook up a PS3 + a PS2 + a Wii + the Xbox 360 which is the workhorse in our household.

  • RuddigerPez

    Your opinion is tired and useless. There is only one reason left to play PS2 games: nostalgia. True, it’s nostalgia for five years ago, but that just means you should still have your PS2 around to play the games. Someone new to the Playstation line will be just fine playing only PS3 games.

    Sony isn’t going to bring BC back, no matter ho entitled to it you think you are, so just shut up about it.

  • Jam Doug

    I agree that Sony will not bring backward compatibIlity back unless they find away to make us pay for it. Now Sony has already started re-releasing their top PS2 games like the GoW Collection and they will continue to do so to make a profit. Either way it doesn’t matter my 360 gets more use than my PS3. Sony also needs to stop all this 3D shit because I already feel like a dork wearing a headset and now play a game with 3d glasses. Cut the shit and make some games!

  • Richard

    Sony did not take away backwards compatibility from those who already had it, and since the ps2 is still being sold as a budget console to ones with limited funds or as a alternative to a Wii for a kids/ party machine the who really cares. I do not have a ps2 or any games. I do own a 40G ps3 and while BC would have been nice, It is not a dealbreaker. If there was a premium PSN that would allow for BC then bring it on. The ones who paid for a release 20 or 60 Gig already paid the first adopter tax, so the rest of us pays a fee to open up thousands of games. I am a cheap SOB, but even I understand the economics of Sonys decidions.

  • ManaReaper

    Bring BC! If I have to pay to unlock the feature, then money well spent!

  • Tres21

    why play ps2 games on ps3 instead of gettin out the cords findin the old controllers & memory cards & makin room, not mention the slight upgrade in graphics u get playin the games on the ps3…course when ur blu-ray stops workin on the ps3 all u can do is play ps2 games & demos…i hate my life.lol

  • Hm

    Ah, when are people going to stop whinging about this. Jeez, backward compatibility isn’t that big of a deal. This article should be called “Why it would be nice to have PS2 compatibility”, not “Why it NEEDS to be on PS3”. It doesn’t need to be at all – PS3 is doing fine by itself thank you very much. And once you start playing next gen games, the number of times you will actually go back to PS2 games is minimal. Just get over it and move on already, or stick with PS2 and stop whining.

  • Sean

    I agree with those who say BC is not that big a deal…or rather, that it SHOULD not be a big deal. The console makers should all have treated it for what it is: a stopgap measure at the launch of a new console to make up for the usual lack of launch-time titles. (Not to mention a way to keep the faithful from feeling like their massive prior-gen library had become another victim of planned obsolescence.)

    By removing the BC from subsequent models of PS3, Sony made the issue far larger than it deserved to be. Even Microsoft has taken it out of the bare-bones Arcade version of the 360, leaving Nintendo the only one of the three to have shown that it gets the concept. One can only hope the makers all get it right the next time.

  • Gemini ace

    Honestly they just need to do what they did with the god of war collection on classic ps2 titles. That’s something microsft can’t or won’t do. Update the graphics and add trophies.

  • I would like to be able to play my PS2 games on my PS3, but you have to realize, it isn’t as easy as flipping on a switch. To play PS2 games on the PS3 hardware, Sony has to incorporate hardware and/or software emulation.

    Yeah, now that technology has advanced, maybe they can get the PS3s to do the old school stuff as well. But if it’s accomplished through the hardware, then it’s going to be a feature only in new model PS3s.

    If it’s software, that would mean, a few years after the fact, that someone would have had to be working on software emulation that would push it beyond the 60% software emulation previously accomplished.

  • Smartest Man Alive

    Of course backwards compatibility for ps2 is coming back. The big reason is that Sony would like to start selling ps2 games on psn. Selling ps1 games are already a nice cash cow for them.

    They are actively working on an emulator. The advantages to software emulation is that future playstations can also run them after being ported.

  • todd

    Sony removed it because they saw how the wii is catching up to the ps2 sales world record and the ds also. So they figure to remove it off the ps3 so that they can announce new games for the ps2 so that it will continue to sell and make it harder for wii or ds to catch up to its record. Its all bs what Sony is doing to their fan base. That’s why I sold my ps3 cause my friend works at Sony and he told me this. Sony is a fucked up company!