People always talk about dog years, or cat years, but what about video game console years?
It's hard to know what that math is, but one thing is certain: Sony's PlayStation 2 turned 9 years old Wednesday, and it sure feels like the best-selling video game console of all time has been around a whole lot longer than that.
Yet even though we're already more than three years into the PlayStation 3/Xbox 360/Wii console generation, the PS2 is still going strong. Routinely, month after month, its sales are in six figures--146,000 in September in the United States alone, according to The NPD Group--and there's no reason to think the 485 (and counting) developers who have made games for the platform are going to stop any time soon.
In large part, that's because there are millions of people for whom the world-beating processing power of the PS3 and the Xbox 360, and the graphics-so-good-you-can-see-beads-of-sweat-on-sports-players'-bodies aren't worth paying several hundred dollars for. For $100, they say, you can get one heck of a good video game playing experience with a PS2.
It "still holds a place in my heart--there's so many great games with huge amounts of replay value," said Michael Steavenson, a public relations professional who bought his PS2 around 2001. "I'm not so interested in blazingly fast processing speeds, graphics that make games look like a movie, or uber-cutting-edge hardware stats. If the game is well-designed, fun to play, and provides me with a good emotional connection, I'll play it forever."
According to Sony, one out of every three U.S. households owns a PS2, and, worldwide, almost 140 million people have one. To date, Americans have bought more than half a billion PS2 games, and all told, nearly 10,000 titles have been released for the platform. Not bad for a machine that has earned the right to be living out its golden years sitting on a porch somewhere, smoking a cigar and grumbling about kids these days. … Read more