Sony Playstation

The Sony Playstation - Pretender to the Throne?

In the battle of the 32-bits, Sony won out with this console. As a result, they got enough into the gaming market to bring out the PS2 and now the PS3 (which I thought might be their downfall, prohibitively overpriced as it was, especially with the Wii around).

The Playstation had clear limitations, the graphics weren't as sharp as the Saturn, the pads weren't as comfy (although the design actually seems to have endured), and it was obvious that "number of buttons on our pad wars" was reaching a whole new level...

The optimum design for the pad was the "Dual Shock" pad. With a large vibrator unit in one side of the pad, and a little one in the other, there was the ability to give different levels of feedback. The pad had a D-pad, TWO analogue pads, FOUR shoulder buttons, Start & Select (plus a toggle button for the analogue control) and the four main thumb buttons. My other gripe about the Sony pad was the choice of symbols for buttons instead of letters or numbers. This just made it difficult to record combinations in the mind, remember how complicated Mortal Kombat 2 got on the SNES? Imagine that on the Playstation!

To me, this machine is always going to be the one that got the success, but didn't entirely deserve it. Sure, there were some good games and add-ons (the Gun-Con gun, for example, was almost as good as the Saturn Virtua Gun, which for me is the best home light gun EVER), but the success wasn't down to the specs on the box, more the superb marketing campaign that Sony embarked on.