There were some gamers back in the 90s that managed to stand up to the insane challenges set by developers and complete some of the hardest games ever produced.
Have a look at this list of 10 classic games made on the PS1, and see how many you completed. Some of them are on the list because of their toughness and others due to their status within the vast amount of PS1 games. Rest assured, if you managed to complete all of these games, then you truly are a legend of the PlayStation!
10.Crash Bandicoot (1996)
If Super Mario is the mascot for Nintendo, then you could argue that the true mascot for the PlayStation throughout the years has been Crash Bandicoot. The game first hit stores in the UK in the winter of 1996, and from there it became one of the most successful games in the history of the console.
Though it was always great fun to play as a kid, it was definitely one of the most infuriating games that I ever played. With more than just a little of the old trial-and-error gameplay going on, you have to help Crash navigate native islands, castles and watery cliffs to try and stop Cortex from taking over the world.
Now I don’t know whether this is just me, but as a kid, I could never even get off the first Island, let alone complete the game. With graphics systems that look deceiving by modern standards – such as not being able to judge jumping distances – and a number of booby traps designed to disguise the game’s relatively short run-time, the original Crash Bandicoot was definitely a game that fans loved, but found frustrating at the same time!
Even now, it is regarded as one of the hardest games that we all played as kids.
9.Metal Gear Solid
In a time when people tended to consider playing video games to be the refuge of kids and teenagers, this was a game that was designed for adults. Cerebral and challenging, it is still regarded as one of the benchmarks of gaming, and is also considered to be one of the finest games ever made, and revolutionary for its time.
If you’re a gamer, then it goes with saying that Metal Gear Solid is one of the best games not only of the PlayStation 1 era, but of all time. So ahead of its time was Metal Gear Solid that it still holds up today as a masterpiece of gaming which makes the case that a video game can indeed be a work of art.
With superior graphics for the time, cinematic cut scenes, a Hollywood-like story and exceptional voice-over work, Metal Gear Solid remains as the gold standard for video games. However, despite being such a great game, it was still unfathomably difficult – on hard mode at least. The complex into which Solid Snake is dropped is riddled with security cameras and highly perceptive guards that will detect any and all ill-timed movements. The inherent difficulty to this game comes with the territory of the stealth genre, but it still makes the list nonetheless.
8.Broken Sword: Shadow of the Templars
This game, in and of itself, isn’t too special in terms of its difficulty, but the click and shoot classic was praised at the time for its graphics and overall gameplay. Released in 1996, Broken Sword follows the main player character as he attempts to unravel a conspiracy about the Knight Templars in France.
But this game makes this list for one reason and one reason only, and if you’ve played it, you’ll know what I mean. These two words send shivers down the spines of old school gamers, and just the mere suggestion of these two words can make any 90s gamers shudder and shriek. I’m talking, of course, about the Goat Puzzle.
A game puzzle so complex and legendary, it even has its own Wikipedia page, the idea of the puzzle is for the main character to gain access to a castle by bypassing a goat that is tied up in the entrance way that keeps butting you as you get closer.
Regarded by many gaming experts as one of, if not the single most challenging and complex puzzle in gaming history. Broken Sword makes our list because of it.
7.Grand Theft Auto (1998)
Back to where it all started. Grand Theft Auto may be the 5th most lucrative game series of all time, and arguably the most consistently critically acclaimed and one of the most revolutionary, but every dynasty, no matter how large, has humble beginnings. And for GTA, these humble beginnings are light years away from what the series evolved into.
While being the game that kicked off the world’s fascination with open-world gameplay, the first GTA puts the player in a top-down setting, and the point of the activities is to obtain points. The top-down setting proved to be difficult for the player from the word go, but combine that with one-hit kills, limited and hard to find weapons, a lack of mid-level saving and a limit on lives, this game kick-started the cultural phenomenon that is GTA in a toe-curlingly difficult way.
Rayman is a game long on levels and short on checkpoints and the margin for error is razor thin, especially given that the player only starts off with five lives and five continues, which can all quite easily be used up by the second world. The amount of lives Rayman can find is drastically decreased after the first few levels, and by the latter stages, lives are placed in such precarious and dangerous places, it’s not even worth trying to get to them.
The electoon cages are scattered across the levels, and if they’re not hidden in absurdly hard to get to corners of the level, then they only appear when Rayman hits completely random and often practically undetectable trigger points.
And if you don’t find them all – 102 to be exact – then you can’t even get to the final boss. This is a game that everyone played and no one completed. Moreover, many of us didn’t even get past the second world – a part of the game that is easy compared to the latter stages. And by the time you get to the final two worlds, the game is as difficult as it possibly can before it becomes actually impossible.
5.Tomb Raider III (1998)
The key difference in the development of Tomb Raider III is a reason behind its difficulty. Instead of building on the more action and shoot-‘em-up style of Tomb Raider II, the developers decided to take advantage of the blossoming technology available for games by upgrading the engine used in its predecessors. The engine offers better speed efficiency and new graphical features such as coloured lighting and triangular polygons, allowing developers to achieve greater detail and more complex geometry.
As a result, the game walks confidently into a brave new world of difficulty. Combining complex puzzles, hidden items and combative humans and animals, Tomb Raider III really separates the men from the boys. Moreover, the limited save structure (a key difference between Tomb Raider II and III) means that the exploration of the levels, which are littered with booby traps, poses a much greater intensity of complexity than ever before. In past releases, it was a case of trial and error, but now, it’s a different beast entirely.
4.Silent Hill (1999)
It’s safe to say that in the late 90s, Konami were absolutely killing it when it came to releasing quality games, and with Silent Hill, they looked to try and steal some of the glory that Capcom had built up over the years, and tried to get into the survival horror business.
This game represents more of a physiological difficulty than an actual one. While the game is not easy by any stretch of the imagination, it requires a steady hand and a strong will to survive it. Because while the likes of Resident Evil may have been more gory and more tense, no game messed with your head quite like Silent Hill did.
It put the willies up gamers in the late 90s, and if you were brave enough to see this one through to the bitter end, then you were a true champion of the PS1
The game is very exploration heavy, and with a combination of real-time action combat, extremely challenging puzzle solving that is so subtle and so complex that you basically need to be Sherlock Holmes to figure them out. The insanely precise platforming makes the game unlike any other. The platforming is isometric, and therefore straight from the outset, you are thrown into the deep end, from which you are never afforded the opportunity to escape.
Upon release, the game was universally acclaimed and was fairly successful commercially. It was praised for its well-written story and characterisation, smooth game mechanics and platforming, challenging gameplay and puzzles, and expansive overworld exploration. But despite all this, it has become infamous in some circles of the gaming community as not just the undisputed king of difficult ps1 games, but arguably to some the hardest game of all time.
2.Oddworld: Abe’s Oddysee (1997)
While Abe’s Oddysee was critically acclaimed for its innovative gameplay, stylish graphics, good art direction and engaging cut-scenes, the game was nonetheless criticised for its difficulty.
The game had a steep, almost vertical learning curve, and having a system in which saving was only possible at designated checkpoints made the game extremely difficult. Couple that with a one-hit-kill design, a designated number of freed Mudoken’s needed for a good ending, and its puzzle and strategy elements, and you have a game that is not for the weak at heart, or thumbs.
1.Final Fantasy VII (1997)
Final Fantasy VII is considered to be one of the greatest games of all time, and was one of the titles that defined not only the original PlayStation, but the gaming memories of so many 90s gamers.
It was the first entry in the series to launch in the European market and the first to use 3D visuals, featuring fully rendered characters on pre-rendered backgrounds.
The game was released on PlayStation back in 1997, at a time when the big grey giver of irreplaceable memories reigned supreme as the undisputed king of home consoles. It later came to PC and then to the PlayStation Network and by 2010 it had moved over 10 million copies, making it the bestselling instalment in the series.
This is one of the true epic games, in as much as it covers three disks, has a boat load of difficult puzzles and bosses, and is one of the best immersive experiences that 90s gamers, or indeed any gamers, could hope to have. This was a test of wills, and if you managed to complete this blockbuster marathon of a game, then consider yourself the truest legend of the PlayStation.