Today marks the 20th anniversary of the PS2, one of the world’s best and most popular games consoles.
Sony’s second run would prove to be a huge hit for the company, with a seemingly unending supply of games arriving on the platform week-in, week-out. It wouldn’t be another 16 years until Sony would get into the VR game with PSVR but, even so, there’s still a handful of the console’s most cherish games that you can play in VR today.
Below, we’ve rounded up four classic PS2 games you play play on PSVR and/or PC VR, as well two you can (or will soon be able to) play on Quest. Time to take a trip down memory lane; we’re heading back to the glory days of PlayStation.
Native VR Games
Zone of the Enders: The 2nd Runner
What Platforms?: PSVR + PC VR
What Is It?: Produced by none other than Hideo Kojima of Metal Gear Solid fame, Zone of the Enders is a Japanese mech combat game with a cult following. Its sci-fi story sees you travelling across galaxies to do combat with hordes of machines. It’s weird, janky, and utterly essential for Kojima completists.
How Can I Play It In VR?: Via Zone of the Enders: The 2nd Runner M∀RS, a PS4 and PC remaster of the game with optional VR support. It puts you in the cockpit of Jehuty
Should I Play It In VR?: If you’re one of the many that holds a special place in their heart for this game, absolutely. Jumping into Jehuty in VR can be an amazing experience. If you’ve never played a ZoE game before, however, you’ll likely find this a little too dated.
What Platforms?: PSVR + PC VR
What Is It?: Tetsuya Mizuguchi’s seminal on-rails musical shooter, hypnotic in its approach to both visuals and audio. People love Rez for its relaxing vibe and absorbing beat-based gameplay, which blankets you in neon-infused synthetic sounds.
How Can I Play It In VR?: Through Rez Infinite, a fantastic remaster of the original game which includes all of the base content and some new features. The VR is optional, too.
Should I Play It In VR?: Absolutely. VR brings Rez to life like never before, pulling you even further into its dizzying world. Just make sure you don’t get lost.
Space Channel 5
What Platforms?: PSVR, (Quest + PC VR coming soon)
What Is It?: An oddball treat, Space Channel 5 started life at one of Sega’s Dreamcast front runners before making its way to PS2. It was a rhythm-based memory game in which you memorize inputs and then repeat them. But, more importantly, the game had a zany flair to it that left its mark on the gaming industry even two decades on.
How Can I Play It In VR?: Space Channel 5 VR: Kinda Funky News Flash hit PSVR last and, while it’s not a direct translation of the original game, it does remix much of that content. You’ll revisit familiar environments and characters throughout.
Should I Play It In VR?: Unless you’re a huge Space Channel devotee, not really. Kinda Funky News Flash is super short and mechanically inferior to its predecessors. It promises a fun trip down memory lane, but you’d be better off seeking out the originals.
What Platforms?: PSVR
What Is It?: Gungrave was a cult favorite third-person shooter with a wacky style. Taking the definition of ‘Run ‘n Gun’ very literally, you sprint around levels with the fire button held down, unleashing hell and helpless enemies. Massive boss battles peppered throughout also bring the pain.
How Can I Play It In VR?: Gungrave VR released on PSVR last year. It’s a remix of some of the original game’s content alongside an all-new expansion.
Should I Play It In VR?: Oh dear sweet Jesus no. Gungrave has aged horribly over the years and there is next to no reason for this version to be in VR. It’s sluggish, hastily pieced together and woefully short. Avoid at all costs.
Mods And Emulators
What Platforms?: PC VR + Quest
What Is It?: Like I need to explain. Valve’s immortal shooter that represented a huge leap forward for the genre. Now, it might be cheating a little but PS2 did get a port of Half-Life all the way back in 2001, so it counts in our book.
How Can I Play It In VR?: There are two mods, one that allows you to play with PC VR headsets and one that lets you play on Quest. Sadly you won’t be able to play the PS2-exclusive local co-op campaign (for obvious reasons), but you can play the two expansions, Opposing Force and Blue Shift, that never came to PS2 as a constellation prize.
Should I Play It In VR?: If you have the stomach for it, sure. Both mods are really good and allow full motion control. But Half-Life’s quick movement isn’t ideally suited for comfort. Still, you may want to see the game through different eyes before Half-Life: Alyx drops.