PS1 games that are still worth playing in 2023.
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PS1 Games Still Worth Playing In 2023

What draws me to keep playing old PlayStation 1 games is the feeling of nostalgia that it brings. So, what exactly makes a PS1 game still worth playing? Well for me, it’s about bringing back so many happy memories of booting up the PlayStation after school and playing some classics. I love revisiting my collection of retro games and picking something to play.

Not every game is as good as I remember it to be though, but there are a lot of Playstation games that are still worth playing today, some are downright trash! To help you identify the good from the bad Here’s 10 PS1 games that are still worth playing in 2023 and beyond.

  1. Crash Bash
  2. Resident Evil 2
  3. Grand Theft Auto
  4. Parasite Eve
  5. Time Crisis
  6. Clock Tower
  7. Silent Hill
  8. Castlevania Symphony Of The Night
  9. Dino Crisis
  10. Resident Evil

After coming up with the list, I wanted to keep it below 10 games, two more popped into my head. So, let’s call these the ‘Honourable Mentions’

  1. Metal Gear Solid
  2. Heart Of Darkness

If you want to revisit some of these retro classics, I’ve included a link to the Amazon page where you’ll be able to purchase it, not all of the games are going to be available. The link should take you to the search results page.

Full disclosure, if you buy anything from Amazon after hitting the link, we may get a small commission, but it won’t cost you anything extra. It’s just a way for me to pay for the web server.

Below you’ll find a game synopsis and other details of the game aswell as some of my thoughts on why I think it’s worth re-visiting. First up on the list is Crash Bash, one of the lesser known games in the Crash Bandicoot universe.

Crash Bash

Crash Bash is well worth re-visiting.
Crash Bash is well worth playing in 2023 and beyond.

Crash Bandicoot is such a classic series, it’s one of those must play games and one that’s worth playing in 2023 and beyond. I know it sounds a bit silly, but I really like the artwork on the game case, it’s kinda what drew me to it when I bought it from CEX about 3 years ago.

Crash Bash is a party game that can be played either solo, with a friend, or with up to four players using a PlayStation Multitap.

As the fifth installment in the Crash Bandicoot series, Crash Bash includes eight playable characters that each have different advantages and disadvantages, as well as twenty-eight mini games. There are also powers and skills that can be used to secure an advantage, with each character possessing a different set.

The game can be played in either Adventure mode, Battle mode or Tournament mode.

In Adventure mode, one player, or two players working together, attempt to win all twenty-eight mini games and overcome certain challenges to recover trophies, gems and crystals.

Adventure mode includes four Boss Arenas that, once defeated, enable the corresponding mini game challenges. This allows players to go up against AI enemies to win gold and platinum Relics. Unlocking mini games in Adventure mode allows them to be played in the other modes.

Battle mode is intended to provide a way to quickly verse each other in any mini game that has been unlocked, either as teams or in a free for all match.

Finally, Tournament mode consists of four mini games with a point scoring system that determines the overall winner.

Developer:Eurocom Entertainment Software
Release Date:November 6, 2000 (NA), December 1, 2000 (EU)
Controller:PlayStation controller, Dual Analog Controller, DualShock

Resident Evil 2

A classic PS1 game, it's one that you simply must revisit.
A classic PS1 game, it’s one that you simply must revisit.

You’ll see Resident Evil 2 on lists of the greatest ever PlayStation games, it thoroughly deserves it’s place on those lists. It also deserves it’s place on this list of PS1 games still worth playing.

Resident Evil 2 is a survival horror game taking place two months after the first game, Resident Evil. The citizens of Racoon City have been zombified by a biological weapon and players control two characters attempting to escape, Leon Kennedy and Claire Redfield.

While finding a pathway leading out of the city, gameplay involves exploring, solving puzzles, and engaging in combat with zombie enemies.

Players can obtain guns, however ammo is scarce which results in strategic weapon use. Extra weapons and clothing can be earned, although the number of items that a player can carry is limited. Storage boxes are also scattered throughout the world allowing players to store items for later use.

There is a status screen that shows the players health, allowing them to use their medical items to heal, and organize their weapons. The health of the character currently being played is also evident in their posture and movement speed.

With a similar saving system to the first Resident Evil game, Resident Evil 2 includes typewriters that the players can use an ink ribbon with to make a save. The catch is that there is a set number of ink ribbons hidden in the world so saving the game must also be strategic.

Genre:Survival horror
Release Date:January 21st 1998
Controller:PlayStation controller, Dual Analog Controller, DualShock

Grand Theft Auto

PS1 games still worth playing: GTA speaks for it's self!
PS1 games still worth playing: GTA speaks for it’s self!

I’m not even going to bother to introduce this one, the franchise speaks for it’s self and I don’t think my words can do it justice.

Grand Theft Auto is the first installment in the Grand Theft auto series, featuring a top down 2D view.

Designed to be a free roaming game packed full of crime, players are free to do as they wish within the world, however there is a storyline with missions laid out as well.

There are eight characters that can be played and a plethora of ways to make money and progress through the game.

Players can also die or get arrested, which causes them to lose equipment and lives. Since the focus of the game is on freedom, the player is given a lot of choice in their actions even within missions.

Grand Theft Auto includes three main cities and six levels between them. For each level there is a target to reach for the amount of points collected. Playing missions awards points and the game is dynamic such that opportunities can be opened or closed off permanently based on the outcome of a mission.

Grand Theft Auto is a single player experience on most systems, however network based multiplayer gameplay was enabled on the PC version.

Genre:Action, adventure
Developer:DMA Design, Tarantula Studios
Release Date:21 October 1997
Controller:PlayStation controller, Dual Analog Controller, DualShock

Parasite Eve

Parasite Eve is one of THE BEST PS1 games, period!
Parasite Eve is one of THE BEST PS1 games, period!

Arguably one of (in my opinion) of the best PS1 games ever made. I don’t play it often but it’s a cherished game in my collection.

Parasite Eve is a sequel to the novel with the same name, written by Hideaki Sena. Being the first game in the Parasite Eve series, Parasite Eve is a 3D action roleplaying game with aspects of survival horror.

Players control an NYPD officer, Aya Brea, that is making an effort to stop the plans of a woman who aims to destroy the entire human race with human combustion technology.

The gameplay involves exploring New York through various levels, making use of a realtime combat system with the ability to pause, and other elements found in roleplaying games. When in combat, the Active Time Bar displays the waiting time to take the next action.

During each turn in battle, players have many choices as to what action to take. They can attack with the weapon they have equipped or they can use their Parasite Energy for either defence, providing assistance, attacking, item usage, weapon swapping, changing armour, or escaping.

As players progress through the game, their level increases based on experience. When a player levels up, their attributes increase and they are awarded Bonus Points to spend on improving their character.

If a player is not in battle, they may change their weapon and armour attributes and effects provided they have the correct tools.

Genre:Survival horror, action roleplaying
Release Date:March 29, 1998 (Japan), September 9, 1998 (NA)
Controller:PlayStation controller, Dual Analog Controller, DualShock

Time Crisis

Originally an arcade game, it's replay value is through the roof.
Originally an arcade game, it’s replay value is through the roof.

Originally released as an arcade game, Namco’s decision to bring it to the PS1 was probably one of the best decisions they ever made. It’s a game that when I play, I just can’t put down.

Time Crisis is a single player shooter game that was later ported to the PlayStation and packaged with the light gun controller made by GunCon.

In the 3D first person rail shooter, players wield a light gun to defend themselves against oncoming enemies. The cover system allows players to hide behind cover and switch between positions for crouching and attacking.

Players progress through three stages that each include three areas and a boss battle. Playing with a time limit means taking risks and playing fast paced is rewarding. Extra time is awarded after completing an area, and also for killing some enemies quickly.

Since you can’t advance through the game while ducking behind cover, it can be most effective to use it sparingly.

The PlayStation version of Time Crisis also includes Special mode, which dynamically determines a player’s path through the game based on their performance. This introduces multiple endings and means replaying the game can be worthwhile.

Release Date:June 27, 1997 (Japan), October 31, 1997 (NA), November 30, 1997 (PAL)
Controller:GunCon light gun, PlayStation controller, Dual Analog Controller, DualShock

Clock Tower

You simply have to re-play this PS1 game, it's a little slow but has an amazing ending.
You simply have to re-play this PS1 game, it’s a little slow but has an amazing ending.

I’m not the biggest fan of ‘point and clicks’, but I do find my self revisiting this epic survival horror occasionally. It’s one of the creepiest, scariest games I played as a kid. If you haven’t heard of it or played it, the entire series is worth checking out.

In the first installment of the series, Clock Tower is a survival horror, point & click adventure game that requires players to control Jennifer Simpson, the main character, with the use of an on-screen cursor.

In the 2D world, players can command Jennifer to investigate objects, navigate to other areas, walk, run, etc. and the game’s inventory system allows players to keep items to use at a later time.

There is a stamina mechanic which means Jennifer cannot run or walk indefinitely, and an indicator on screen reflects the stamina usage.

The main antagonist in the game, Scissorman, consistently taunts the player, sending them into a panic mode that causes Jennifer to stumble and move slowly, or even die, depending on her health. Weapons have no effect on Scissorman so the only choice is to use a trap or find one of the hiding spots tucked away in the mansion.

If players are caught by Scissorman, they enter a quick time event giving them the opportunity to escape. With eight possible endings, the game has plenty of potential to be replayed.

Genre:Survival horror, point & click adventure
Developer:Human Entertainment
Release Date:September 14, 1995
Controller:PlayStation controller, Dual Analog Controller, DualShock

Silent Hill

If this isn't in your collection, it should be.
If this isn’t in your collection, it should be.

This game features heavily in so many lists; from horror lists to greatest games of all time lists, it’s on all of them. So, this means it’s a worthy inclusion on my list of PS1 games worth revisiting in 2023 and beyond.

Silent hill is a single player survival horror experience where players control the main character, Harry Mason, in third person view.

While engaging in combat, exploring, finding keys, and solving puzzles, the goal is to find Harry’s daughter who went missing. Enemies are spread throughout the town and cut scenes occasionally highlight the main points of the storyline.

Although harry is only a normal person going up against vicious monsters, melee weapons and a range of guns are available to take advantage of. That being said, Harry can only run for a certain duration before he runs out of breath and his aim is far from stable because he doesn’t have any history of firearm usage.

To locate enemies, players are sent bursts of static when they’re approaching one because of the portable radio found near the beginning of the story. Also, Harry’s heart beat can be felt through the DualShock controller when health is low to provide extra feedback.

To improve navigation, maps of each area are hidden throughout the world ready to be collected. Once found, the maps can be viewed from the menu, but only when the lighting around Harry is bright enough. These are particularly valuable due to the points of interest marked on each map.

Genre:Survival horror
Developer:Konami Computer Entertainment Tokyo
Release Date:February 23, 1999 (March 4, 1999 in Japan)
Controller:PlayStation controller, Dual Analog Controller, DualShock

Castlevania: Symphony of the Night

One of the rarest and most expensive PS1 games. If you do have it in your collection it’s well worth playing through again. It was, in my opinion at least, ahead of it’s time.

The 2D side-scrolling gameplay in Castlevania: Symphony of the Night involves searching Dracula’s castle to find and destroy an entity that controls the self-proclaimed lord of the castle, Richter Belmont. Once players find a certain item, they are able to see the entity and therefore defeat it which unlocks the second half of the game.

To complete the game, players must survive the final battle against Dracula.

Although the game is not played linearly, the areas of the castle are only unlocked when players collect certain items and abilities.

There is also a map available which shows the unlocked progress. A range of weapons are hidden throughout the castle which are managed through an inventory system, which organizes all items in the game. There are also eight spells that can be used, consuming the player’s magic points.

There are four attributes that can be developed throughout the game: strength, intelligence, and luck. These attributes serve to make the game more interesting and dynamic as gameplay is constantly evolving throughout progression.

Killing enemies allows players to level up and build up attributes required to increase your playable power.

Genre:Platformer, adventure, action roleplaying
Developer:Konami Computer Entertainment Tokyo
Release Date:March 20, 1997
Controller:PlayStation controller, Dual Analog Controller, DualShock

Dino Crisis

Probably my favourite PlayStation game ever.
Probably my favourite PlayStation game ever.

I’ve covered Dino Crisis before on my article discussing some amazing PS1 horror games. It genuinely terrified me as a kid. But, it was a genuinley fantastic game.

I’d love for a full re-master or re-make on next gen consoles. I recon it’d work really well on the Nintendo Switch as when you play via handheld it’s only 720p, so wouldn’t need much re-working in terms of graphics.

Dino Crisis is a survival horror, action-adventure, light gun shooter that is set in a fictional world on an island called Ibis Island. Set in 2009, Dino Crisis has players control an agent sent by the Secret Operation Raid Team to investigate a research facility, the only thing is that it’s overrun with dinosaurs.

Players can interact with the 3D world in a single player experience as they kill dinosaurs and progress through the storyline.

The gameplay involves players finding their way through the research facility and uncovering its secrets, before finding a way out to safety. There are three different storage boxes in the game, often packed with loot, and players are required to find Plugs to open them.

The game is packed with action and puzzle solving that gets the heart racing. The dinosaurs are intended to be quick, agile and intelligent, creating an atmosphere of visceral fear.

Saving in Dino Crisis can be done as many times as a player likes by simple travelling to one of the many save points. Full motion videos in the game also create an interesting storyline with entertaining voice overs.

Genre:Survival horror, action, adventure, shooter
Release Date:July 1, 1999
Controller:PlayStation controller, Dual Analog Controller, DualShock

Resident Evil

Saving the best until last, it’s Resident Evil. What self respecting gamer hasn’t played atleast one of the games in the resident evil series?

As the first game of the series, Resident Evil is a single player survival horror game focused on two members of an elite task force intended to enforce the law, called S.T.A.R.S.

There is a choice to play as either Chris Redfield or Jill Valentine and progression through the story starts after one of their team members goes missing. Quite early in the game, the characters find themselves locked in a mansion along with a slew of all types of monsters and mutants.

While navigating the mansion and discovering the secrets hidden within, players aim to fully understand the mysteries of the mansion and find their way out.

The game save system is quite unique in Resident Evil. In order to make a save in the game, players are required to find a typewriter and use an ink ribbon on it, however the ink ribbons are limited in availability so saves need to be used carefully.

Documents going into detail about the lore in the game are hidden all throughout the mansion, and they’re needed to progress through the game. There are also clues and items to be found which allow the player to solve puzzles and unlock new areas and items.

Although they’re scarce, medical items, weapons and ammo are scattered throughout the mansion as well. If these were in order of what I think you should revisit first, Resident evil should be number one on the list of PS1 games you should replay.

Genre:Survival horror
Release Date:March 22, 1996
Controller:PlayStation controller, Dual Analog Controller, DualShock

PS1 Games Still Worth Playing

I’m interested in hearing what you think about my thoughts on the PlayStation games that are still worth playing. Let me know in the comments below if you think I’ve missed any obvious classics or if you disagree.

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