Imagine you're trapped on an island; an island with internet access and electricity, miraculously. On this island, your only company is a video game console. Any video game console, and its entire library of games.
So, in this hypothetical, impossible scenario, what console (and its library) would you choose?
Realistically, I could probably get the best mix of modern and retro games on the PlayStation 3. But to have a little bit of fun with this question, I think I would bring a Sega Genesis with me. I never owned a Genesis when I was growing up, so I missed a lot of the classics: Phantasy Star IV, Shining Force, NHL 94. At a minimum, I would have time to delve into my backlog.
And if I were allowed to bring along a Sega CD attachment, my library would grow exponentially. Lunar! Popful Mail! Sewer Shark! And I haven't even mentioned the abundance of high-quality shoot 'em ups that would be at my fingertips. I could spend the rest of my life mastering Thunder Force 3.
The Sega Genesis wouldn't be able to match the depth and breadth of other libraries, but it would be the champion of replayability. And on a hypothetical desert island, replayability is king.
Joke answer? The Ouya. Realistically? I'd probably go with the PlayStation 4. Not only is my PS4 backlog so large that I'd actually love a chance to be stranded on a desert island to catch up, but having the complete library of PS4 games means I'll finally get a chance to own P.T. on my console.
Also, I'll have a copy of Bloodborne, which honestly speaking is probably the only game I'll ever want or need on a desert island.
PlayStation 2, easily. Why? Because the majority of my all-time favorite games are PS2 games. I'll even list them exhaustively: Persona 3 FES, Okami, Katamari Damacy and We Love Katamari, Rez, Shadow of the Colossus, Tony Hawk's Underground, Dark Cloud 2, The Jak & Daxter and Sly Cooper trilogies, Silent Hill 3, Guitar Hero, Fatal Frame 2, and heck, even arguably my most-played game ever (that doesn't really hold up, to be honest), Kingdom Hearts. (Give me a break; it was one of the only few games I owned for years, and I got really into speeding through it and synthesizing new keyblades and whatnot. I had a journal dedicated to tracking enemy spawns and drops. It was an obsession.)
I often call the PlayStation 2 the greatest console, and that's not because it was a huge technological leap from the original PlayStation. It's my favorite console because of how it was home to so many of my favorite experiences of all-time in games, and it was home to some of the most inventive experiences too—ideas that weren't yet the norm for mainstream console games. I think a lot of that was born from the seeds of niche titles from the previous generation, where games like Vib-Ribbon and LSD were able to exist. PlayStation 2 only amplified the weird, and best of all, the ambitious. Game makers like Keita Takahashi and Fumito Ueda are household names because of it. If I were stuck on a desert island with miraculous electricity, I can think of no better console to keep me company until the end of time.
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