Looking to expand the offerings of the PlayStation Store, Sony is filling in the generation gap between its classic PlayStation titles and downloadable PlayStation 3 material with a selection of PlayStation 2 titles. Yes, PS2 games are headed back to the PS3 in their original non-HD, unTrophied form. Kotaku has the news.
Simply throwing old games onto the PlayStation Store with no enhancements is a surefire way to get a lot of them up quickly (Sony seem on track to do around 4-6 per month), but it will also grate with those who own those games on PS2 and, once upon a time, could have played them on a PS3 for nothing. A little polish, even trophies, would have soothed that savage beast. The first five games to be made available sometime later today are GrimGrimoire, Maximo: Ghosts to Glory, Ring of Red, Odin Sphere and God Hand.
While this is an overall good thing, I can't help but notice that this news means that Sony has finally come up with its long-demanded PS2 emulator for the PS3. Unfortunately, we can't just have the emulator itself for use with our old PS2 discs. Obviously making us pay for this older content again is more profitable than sending out a PS3 firmware update with the new functionality included, but I have a difficult time dealing with paying for functionality that was once free yet removed in the name of being cost-effective. Rumor has it that the emulation isn't 100% and that not all PS2 games are up to the challenge of running on the PS3, so I can understand the rationale for not unleashing the emulator for us to use with broken games, but there must be a middle ground somewhere. Why not follow Microsoft's route on this one and send out updates that enable backward compatibility for select titles as that company did when it came to running classic Xbox discs on the Xbox 360? Sony should still sell PS2 games on the PS Store since plenty of those older titles are hard to find and long out of print, but those of us who still have a nice PS2 library should be able to use them on a machine that is capable of playing them. After all, it works for PS1 discs and once worked for PS2 discs before that ability was removed.