Over the 11 year lifespan of the Sony PlayStation, countless platform games made their way onto the 32-bit powerhouse. With such a wide selection to choose from, RetroCollect takes a look at what could be considered as the top 10 Sony PlayStation platform games released.
While Nintendo were riding comfortably with the Mario franchise and Sega were beginning to push Sonic into questionable directions, a whole cast of characters stepped forward to make the Sony PlayStation name what it is today. As the console was one of the first to offer a more accesible portal to 3D gaming, it should be no surpise that the platform genre which was once a 2D genre, also became littered with both 2.5D and 3D games.
With 1459 PAL PlayStation releases documented in the RetroCollect Retro Game Database to date, there is more than enough to be searching through before making your next purchase. Hopfully this guide should give you plenty to be considering the next time you visit the RetroCollect Marketplace or eBay.
The Adventures of Lomax
This gorgeously designed pixel art platformer was an early release on the Sony PlayStation which soon faded into the unknown. Psygnosis took the popular Lemmings franchise and decided to ambitiously create a protagonist out of the dozy creatures.
Also seeing release on Windows, this obscure title comes well recommended for those who enjoy a challenge. Those more familiar with the Commodore Amiga, Sega Mega CD and Sega Mega Drive release Flink may see a slight resemblance between the two, given the inherited gameplay and design style.
While many would argue Klonoa defined the 2.5D platforming genre, Pandemonium arrived nearly 2 years before the long eared Dream Traveller almost claiming the rights to the genre.
This bizarre dual character adventure offered a rather simplistic adventure, yet an incredibly involving one at that. It’s inclusion of the percentage based score, calculated on how many of the level’s trinkets were collected kept many gamers hooked unnecessarily. The perfectionists within us found ourselves revisiting the many levels over and over, hoping to better each percentage gathered on the quest so far.
The Adventure of Little Ralph
Upon release of the Sony PlayStation, the Western gaming world was instantly possessed by the 3D capabilities of the console, kick starting a wave of ‘nothing but 3D is good enough’ mentality amongst the masses. So once the Super Nintendo styled Adventure of Little Ralph arrived in Japan 5 years into the console’s lifespan, it came as no surprise that the game remained a Japanese exclusive.
But as all retro gamers should know by now, graphics aren’t everything. This gorgeous pixel art adventure is without a doubt one of the finest (and most challenging) platform games the PlayStation has seen to date. While it’s price tag is that of a current-gen game, it’s worth every penny invested.
Croc: Legend of the Gobbos
As Super Mario 64 was gaining all the praise available for inventing the 3D platformer genre, there was one certain crocodile left behind in the plumbers fame.
While lacking the polish Nintendo had to offer, Croc brought a very similar style of gameplay to the PlayStation in an rather expansive adventure. Despite being well received, Croc today remains locked in the Unversial Game Studios vaults after his last outing in Croc 2.
Unlike many that tried to break through with 16-bit graphics on the 32-bit console, Rayman was without a doubt the only successful arrival to not be cursed with the lack of polygons. Ubi-Soft’s platformer proved that graphics weren’t everything in as Rayman eventually became the best selling Sony PlayStation game in the United Kingdom.
Rayman adopted a similar approach to Super Metroid, starting out with an under powered main character. As Rayman progressed, so did his abilities and inevitably the challenges ahead. If you’re yet to play Rayman, our main advice is to not let the adorable visuals fool you into what appears to be an easy ride.
Every console needs a mascot! While Sega and Nintendo had more official mascots, many contenders stepped forward to make themselves heard on the Sony PlayStation with a certain marsupial omnivore taking the centre stage.
This launch day release had gamers worldwide screaming at the infuriatingly taxing levels while repeatedly coming back for more and more. Following the success of the first game, Crash Bandicoot has now spanned a multitude of consoles and releases worldwide becoming quite a mascot in his own right. However from a RetroCollect point of view, the first two games will always be the best of the bunch.
Oddworld: Abe's Oddysee
In what could be described as the most daring outing on the Sony PlayStation, Oddworld: Abe's Oddysee brought not only an underlining political vibe to the console but an amusing storyline riddled with very dark humour.
While the ultimate aim was to rescue every captured Mudokon slave working at the RuptureFarms meat processing factory, there was always a twisted laugh which left gamers as the occasional one slipped into the meat grinder.
With some incredible mechanisms such as enemy manipulation combined with a range of hidden areas, Oddworld: Abe's Oddysee to this day is one of the most engrossing and deep releases to ever grace the PlayStation name.
This block based 3D platformer offered a whole new depth to games previously unseen to date. The intricate puzzles combined with deadly traps and treasures shot the famous adventurer Lara Croft into instant virtual fame.
In true Indiana Jones style, the adventure spanned elusive locations of the world with various hidden locations which were somewhat believable. Gamers were hooked solving the mysteries within while watching the treasures corrupt the enemies in game. But for many, the real jaw dropping moment was coming face to face with an overpowered Tyrannosaurus Rex in the first level.
While the more recent Tomb Raider games have strayed far from the quality of the initial releases, the original series offer more than enough hidden caverns for countless playthroughs.
Klonoa: Door to Phantomile
If there was ever a game to have undersold greatly leaving many future retro gamers in awe at what they missed, Klonoa is one of them. With a similar release story to Adventure of Little Ralph, the majority of gamers wanted graphics over gameplay and missed out on this adorable gem from Namco in 1998.
Klonoa made the best possible use of the Sony PlayStation’s technology while maintaining a retro platform feel. Defining the 2.5D genre, the game saw a mix of a 3D environment combined with 2D platforming gameplay done with such accuracy and flair.
Klonoa still remains a fantastic purchase today, however those wanting to experience the game in all it’s glory may want to consider the updated Nintendo Wii remake of the game.
Whoopee Camp’s only two releases came under the name Tombi. Despite putting together two of the finest and most innovative games to ever grace the Sony PlayStation, poor sales sent Whoopee Camp deep under.
Tombi also adopted the trending 2.5D gameplay and managed to combine elements more commonly seen in Role Playing Games. Starting out with nothing but a grass skirt, Tombi found himself taking on an array of missions from island residents with the overall aim of restoring the land around him from the evil pigs curse. As the game progresses, Tombi finds himself acquiring various clothing and items which turn levels which were previously considered to be complete, into whole new challenges.
With such poor sales, Tombi is inevitability in high demand amongst retro gamers today. Fetching at least £50 on a good day, Tombi 1 and Tombi 2 are purchases which every gamer should at least consider.
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