Freelance writer and poet from London; if you would like to read my poetry, please check out my book, 'Poems on the Page', available from goo.gl/Ta4oAX.
Published September 25th 2012
I came to the world of gaming pretty late. I was ten by the time I got my first console, and that was a Playstation 1. At the time, Sony's only real rival was Nintendo and its mass of Mario fans. But at this point, I led a technologically sheltered life, and had not even heard of a Nintendo or the famous Italian plumber in dungarees. The only reason I knew about the playstation was because one of my friends owned one. She lived quite far away, but on the odd occasion that I did visit, there was always one game I wanted to play.
Crash Bandicoot. I loved that marsupial mutant. In fact, Crash was the whole reason I wanted a playstation in the first place. I loved progressing from island to island, avoiding TNT boxes and getting swallowed by bandicoot-eating plants. By the time I got a playstation, the Naughty Dog company had already released two sequels. Crash Bandicoot 2: Cortex Strikes Back was the first game I ever owned. After being defeated in the previous game, Crash's evil creator, Neo Cortex, has seemingly turned over a new leaf. Now he wants to save the world. In order to do this, he needs crystals, so recruits Crash and his sister Coco to collect them via warp rooms, which take you to different levels of the game. As well as crystals, there were other collectables that could be won by completing certain tasks like destroying all the boxes in a level. I bought Crash Bandicoot 3: Warped around the same time, and loved riding on that cute polar bears and tiger cub. Then there was Crash Team Racing, which in my opinion is the best racing game ever – yes, better than Mario Kart.
Crash Bandicoot was not my sole repertoire. There were other fantastic games on the market as well. One of which was Rayman: the limbless dude that could still manage a whopping soccer punch. This side-scroller is the best selling playstation game of all time in the UK, with the protagonist, Rayman, having to traverse many a strange realm to save his world from the evil Dr. Dark. There was the standard jungle realm, which seems to appear in most platform games, but there was also Band Land, and realms made of cake. Although it was fun, the levels got very tough, and I often needed cheat codes to progress.
Another platformer was Spyro. Once upon a time dragons lived in harmony, but then Gnasty Gnorc comes along and uses magic to imprison them all in crystal. All but Spyro that is. It looks like he is the only one who can save the day (oh, and his little dragonfly too). I only ever played a demo version of this, but it was good fun. Did anyone else play the full game? What did you think?
All these games were based on original ideas, but there were also PS1 games adapted from movies. Disney films were the most common to turn into games, and it is no surprise. Not only are the films hugely popular, but the storylines lend themselves to creating levels. My favourite of these was Hercules. It is mainly a side-scroller, which I like because it avoids troublsome camera angles that you get in poorly made 3D games.
Other great TV spin-off is Bugs Bunny: Lost in Time. After Bugs takes a wrong turn at Albuquerque, he ends up in Nowhere. The magician Merlin tells Bugs he is lost in time, and must collect clocks in different time periods to return home. In the game, Bugs goes up against a Neolithic Elmer Fudd, the swashbuckling Yosemite Sam, and 1930s gangsters, Rocky and Mugsy.
As you have probably guessed, my favourite type of game is a platformer, but there are many others: fighting, racing, puzzle, etc. Which do you think are the best Playstation 1 games?
I bloomin' well owned on Spyro lol got all the way through and got to a 100% completion where I think you got a bonus level... there were a couple of worlds within the main levels that had tricky parts and were hard to finish all the way through, but once you knew the secrets you were alright lol