Let me paint you a picture. I'm working behind the counter at a local video game store, and people are starting to get the feeling that they may not be able to just stroll into a store and pick up a PlayStation 2. One such gentleman didn't respond too kindly when I told him all the systems the store would be getting were spoken for; after a few more words, he came across the counter and had to be restrained.The guy wasn't even a geek, this was a full-on jock!
Violence, and over a video game system at that! That day was the first time I realized how big Sony would be in gaming. The world of gaming was changing; soon the lines began, the eBay prices became insane, and the PlayStation 2 was launched. Today we celebrate the system's seventh birthday.
So happy birthday, PlayStation 2! You've sold 120 million units worldwide, and, even now, the hardware continues to be a solid performer in the sales charts. It launched with full backwards compatibility with the original PlayStation—and was also an inexpensive DVD player when such things were rare. As a piece of your home theater, it was an impressive addition back in 2000. So in the seven years of the PlayStation 2's success, what have we bought? Here are the top-selling games worldwide:
Grand Theft Auto: Vice City (13 million)
Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas (12 million)
Grand Theft Auto III (11 million)
Gran Turismo 3: A-Spec (11 million)
Gran Turismo 4 (8.79 million)
Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty (7 million)
Kingdom Hearts (5.6 million)
Final Fantasy X (5 million)
Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater (3.7 million)
Final Fantasy XII (3.68 million)
It's impressive to see just how franchise-driven the PlayStation 2 was in its life. This is a product that did a lot to change the face of gaming; the PlayStation 2 brought the mainstream to our hobby, and for better or for worse, we've never been the same. You've come a long way, baby, and hopefully your son will be able to have its own list of achievements.
So share your PlayStation 2 story. Did you buy one at launch? Were you a late adopter? Are you just now getting into the system due to the software library and low prices? Let's help the system have a happy birthday.