It was an exceedingly difficult decision to choose which console made a bigger impact on the gaming community, the Nintendo 64 or the Playstation 1, but I had to ultimately side with Sony on this one.
While each Nintendo console is revolutionary in its own right, with the exception of series like The Legend of Zelda, Nintendo’s gaming platforms are directed more towards family and party games with emphasis on new graphics and gadgets (64-bit graphics and motion sensor controls.)
The first Playstation was a console that gave storytellers in the video game industry a real chance to share a plot that was gripping, engaging and took players into the world of the game in the form of RPGs, or role-playing games. With the introduction of this platform, one that was taken more ‘seriously’ than Nintendo, it gave developers the chance to be seen as real storytellers with work that now rivals the best of television and film. It was also a platform that welcomed adult gamers with titles not fit for younger audiences, such as Metal Gear Solid and Castlevania.
The Playstation also welcomed a series that made its original debut on the Nintendo but became famous as being a Playstation exclusive after its most well known title, Final Fantasy VII. Final Fantasy has since become one of Japan’s biggest gaming series and is exceptionally popular in the United States. Older titles originally seen on the Super Nintendo, such as Final Fantasy IV and V, were re-released on Playstation to reach a wider audience.
VII is one of the greatest examples of a Japanese RPG that used the Playstation as the ultimate storytelling platform, the first in its series to use 3D models for the characters, pre-rendered backgrounds and a storage capacity that exceeded what Nintendo was currently offering. It weaves a massive tale around the gamer who controls the protagonist, Cloud Strife, caught in a world-threatening incident between the antagonists Sephiroth and the Shinra Corporation. Final Fantasy VII has sold over 10 million copies as of 2010, is the greatest seller in the series, has been praised as being the game that led to the popularity of RPGs outside of Japan, and has been credited as the game that sold the Playstation, which led to console platforms finding active markets outside of Japan. VII has also be quoted by Gamefan as being “quite possibly the greatest game ever made.” and Playstation was the vehicle in which this treasure made fans, brought together gamers and helped to create an active and thriving community.
It is because of the titles that were released on the original Playstation that fans were made out of older audiences and those who simply were not into the lighthearted, party-esque titles from Nintendo. It is because of how Playstation rounded out the gaming community I find it to be the greatest and my most favorite platform introduced.