The PS1, despite being Sony's first foray in the video game industry sold an amazing 102.5 Million Units and is still the 5th best-selling console of all time and 3rd best selling home console of all time.
To me looking back it seems surprising to me that the PS1 did as successful as it did being Sony's first time in the video game business and pretty much killed the huge console brand Nintendo at the time beating the N64's 33M with the PS1's 102M. Nintendo was so big at the time to the point where video games were just referred to as a "Nintendo" from what I heard and for Sony to just easily take that throne from Nintendo seems quite amazing to me even to this day.
To those who lived and experienced the 90s, when did you first hear about PlayStation and what made you immediately trust Sony with the PS1 enough to buy one? And did you skip out on the N64 for the PS1? What do you think made PS1 so successful to beat out the well known and dominant Nintendo brand at the time?
Yeah, people did refer to videogames as 'Nintendo' for a while. But this was primarily by parents, school teachers, etc, who did not understand the difference.
But this was also perpetuated (at least in my circle of friends) by most of us owning only Nintendo systems, and the ones that had a Master System or Mega Drive were the odd ones out, so because of that we often said 'Let's go home and play some Nintendo' because we would in fact be playing on a Nintendo.
My first time hearing about Playstation was in gaming magazines leading up to the release of PS1 and N64. I remember FF7 ending up on PS1 was a big deal as it was hyped up all the time. But so were the screenshots of Mario 64 and Ocarina of Time. So, I did in fact not 'immediately trust Sony with the PS1', and instead asked mom to get me an N64. Which turned out to be a bit of a mistake.
I remember the first time I tried a PS1 in a toy store. It had demos of various games, and I tried Wipeout and Battle Arena Toshinden. PS1 came out 1,5 years before N64 in EU, but I still thought the N64 would just be straight up better than PS1 because it's 64-bit instead of 32-bit, and has some of my favorite franchises on it.
But I soon came to realize that the vast majority of my favorite franchises or even genres from the SNES days went to PS1 instead. I was mainly into JRPGs and fighting games at the time, and there was almost none of that on N64, while there was an abundance of them on PS1. Especially if you had a modded PS1 and could play burned or bootleg discs, which some of my friends had. So while I was stuck with an occasional game because they cost so much (I think I ended up owning around 12 games for N64), my friends were swimming in games that they imported for $1 each, or burned for free.
I remember also being intrigued by the CD technology for PS1 enabling it to have demo discs with multiple games that they gave away for free with gaming magazines. There was nothing like that for N64 because cartridges were so expensive.
This was also around the time I noticed that videogaming became a more casual thing, and people that usually didn't know about, let alone talk about, videogames now knew what Playstation was. Girls at school were talking about it, which was crazy to think of back then.
I did play a lot of games on my friend's PS1s, but because there were a lot of games I wanted to play by myself like JRPGs, I decided for the next generation that I would buy a PS2 because it's backwards compatible. And it was obvious that PS2 would continue to dominate in terms of new RPGs and fighting games even that generation, so I got that system, and it has been my preferred system ever since that I always buy. While with Nintendo's home consoles I'm usually uncertain, and wait it out and see how it goes first. Which lead to me skipping Gamecube (because I played Melee all the time on my friends GC anyway), Wii and WiiU. I don't have a Switch of my own yet either, but that's mainly because I still have a lot left to play on PS4, and my girlfriend has a Switch so I can play on that one if I want.
I did get the 3DS though, because it had a lot of Jrpgs and Pokemon, etc that I wanted to play.
Nowadays, the same crowd I mentioned before refer to gaming as 'Playstation' in some countries.
Last edited by Hiku - on 19 November 2020