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Opinion Retro What PS1 hidden gems would you recommend?

Slateee

Formerly 'kawaii_mom'
Mar 20, 2020
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I've got a couple of great imports for y'all. not tryna dump a whole load of games on you just a couple of shining gems!

First is a game I've been loving is called Hokuto no Ken - Seikimatsu Kyuuseishu Densetsu
It's a beat em up game based on the the Fist of the North Star anime.
And let me tell you, the textures are gorgeous!!

the combat layout is simple with singular punch, kick, and jump buttons but combine them in the heat of battle and there are plenty of interesting combos to discover. There's also the occasional quicktime event within combat to finish off an enemy, usualy a boss. And man do you finish them in full MK glory, making their heads explode from lightning fast punches to their vital points. It's very cathartic!

The only real downside of this game as fare as I've played it there seems to be no way to skip the story cut scenes and the game does follow a rather tight narrative although it's humorously corny and easy to follow for those of us that haven't yet learned to speak japanese XP
~~~~~~~~~~
secondly I've been captivated by an underwater game of exploration. This game is b.l.u.e. Legend of Water

The main mode of gameplay finds you navigating the lush ocean floor looking for ruins that you see in your dreams. Along the way you solve puzzles and find stone tablets accompanied by your best friend... who happens to be a dolphin. Much like the dog in Haunting Grounds, you need to give the dolphin commands to get through these puzzles and predicaments. Unlike that dog, the dolphin always complies. Thank god!!

unfortunately there is another type of game play that is sandwiched between these bouts of swimming which is less hand-on and less english friendly. In this mode you point and click your way through the submarine station talking to the other people there to progress the story. Thankfully these segments are not long, there aren't that many rooms to explore, and you don't really need to know exactly what these people are saying to you. Just get back out there and swi~~m!
ALSO THE MUSIC IS PRETTY AWESOME and is always appropriate for the mood.

if you are emulating, then there's no reason not to try these out
(send me a message if you're having trouble finding the ROMs (*ゝω・)ノ
 

Slateee

Formerly 'kawaii_mom'
Mar 20, 2020
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Silhouette Mirage
Einhander
Gradius Gaiden
In the Hunt
Pepsiman
Philosoma
Raycrisis
Raystorm
Thunder Force V
Vanark
Zanac X Zanac
you sure do like your shoot em ups!! I was never exposed to the genre but since I've been branching out I was overwhelmed in my research. What's your opinion on a good game to start with having never played one? I got Einhander but haven't really sat down and given it a couple hours yet. I chose this because (besides it being from Square) I prefer 3D rendered graphics over 2D sprites. But Raycrisis looks great too. WHAT'RE YOUR THOUGHTS?!!!!
 

fallingdove

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Dec 8, 2011
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Because it's not hidden? People haven't mentioned FF7 or Tactics
I always considered Vagrant Story to be a hidden gem. Definitely hidden comparatively to other Square titles.

That said, it did release on PSN so maybe it’s not as hidden as I’d like to believe.
 

TeezzyD

Neo Member
Mar 18, 2020
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Chocobo's Dungeon 2 my favorite PS1 dungeon crawler, and arguably my favorite PS1 FF game.


One Piece Mansion initially this puzzle game feels fairly obtuse... but once it clicks - dear lord. Defines hidden gem for me


Swagman Another gem I never hear anyone talking about. Swagman is like if Tom Burton designed a game after playing too much Links Awakening and Star Tropics

 

sublimit

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Aug 28, 2009
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Kingsley's Adventure. I remember playing the demo back in the day and absolutely loving it but unfortunately i couldn't find the game anywhere in shops here in Europe (no internet bavk then :p). I'm still looking to find it but it's a bit expensive to get in very good condition and complete.
 
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Kokoro2020

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Dec 29, 2019
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Mega Man X4 and X5. Rare 2D platformers coming out at a time when 3D gaming was all the rage.

Gex: Enter the Gecko is another game I have fond memories of.
 
Feb 17, 2020
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Not sure if these count as Hidden Gems:

Martian Gothic - Unification

Countdown Vampires

Second Omega Boost.

Clock Tower

Echo Nights

Nightmare Creatures
 

Slateee

Formerly 'kawaii_mom'
Mar 20, 2020
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slateee.bandcamp.com
Chocobo's Dungeon 2 my favorite PS1 dungeon crawler, and arguably my favorite PS1 FF game.


One Piece Mansion initially this puzzle game feels fairly obtuse... but once it clicks - dear lord. Defines hidden gem for me


Swagman Another gem I never hear anyone talking about. Swagman is like if Tom Burton designed a game after playing too much Links Awakening and Star Tropics

Great recommendations! 3 games that haven't been mentioned yet in this thread. I've been thinking about trying out One Piece Mansion for a while now since I love action puzzle games but whenever I watch gameplay I can never figure out what is actually going on even though I know the premise. And I'll definitely have to play some Chocobo Dungeon 2, it's a game I never thought to take seriously before.
 
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Erdrick

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Alundra
Incredible Crisis
Azure Dreams
Silent Bomber
Tomba!
Nectaris
Klonoa
Hell, even Shadow Madness if you want a FF7 style RPG that apes that series but with the benefit of writing in English to begin with as opposed to a translation. Solid soundtrack as well.
Tobal No. 1
Bushido Blade
Ghost In The Shell
Tecmo's Deception
Kagero: Deception 2
The Granstream Saga
Rival Schools

Just some of the lesser profile titles here in North America that I played and enjoyed, regardless of popular consensus.
I miss games being in jewel CD cases.
 
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anthraticus

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Sep 11, 2018
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you sure do like your shoot em ups!! I was never exposed to the genre but since I've been branching out I was overwhelmed in my research. What's your opinion on a good game to start with having never played one? I got Einhander but haven't really sat down and given it a couple hours yet. I chose this because (besides it being from Square) I prefer 3D rendered graphics over 2D sprites. But Raycrisis looks great too. WHAT'RE YOUR THOUGHTS?!!!!
Gradius Gaiden for me. Not really a fan of the look of Einhander myself.

As far as a hidden gem on the PS1 goes....

Wizardry: Llylgamyn Saga & Legacy of Llylgamyn
 
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CRUNT

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Sep 21, 2006
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Guardian's Crusade

I played it back in the day and don't remember much except for it being a solid, somewhat kid friendly rpg, that felt like a hidden gem at the time.

This guy can tell you more.
 
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stranno

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Black Ops Entertainment's (Treasures of the Deep guys) Agile Warrior: F-111X. Not a great flight combat sim but it features 2-players cooperative play, one player being the gunner and other the pilot (ala Star Fox Zero).



Vivid Image's Street Racer. A Mario Kart Clone. Saturn and Playstation versions were the only 8-players split-screen games ever developed until the Virtua Racing remaster for Switch. And every single version of the game uses a different technical approach. The Genesis version was a regular raster-effect road game (ala OutRun). The Super Nintendo version was a Mode 7 game. The Saturn version was a more advance Mode 7 game. And the Playstation version featured a fully polygonal road. This version probably has the shortest rendering distance i've ever seen on Playstation, playing the 8-players split-screen (even shorter than Driver 2).


Mizruna Hills
That’s Japanese game no English localisation unfortunately
It has an unofficial translation but, afaik, it is not 100% stable.

The Spanish translation is perfectly playable. I already finished it three times and yes, it is an amazing game.

 
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bravoguy

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Black Ops Entertainment's (Treasures of the Deep guys) Agile Warrior: F-111X. Not a great flight combat sim but it features 2-players cooperative play, one player being the gunner and other the pilot (ala Star Fox Zero).



Vivid Image's Street Racer. A Mario Kart Clone. Saturn and Playstation versions were the only 8-players split-screen games ever developed until the Virtua Racing remaster for Switch. And every single version of the game uses a different technical approach. The Genesis version was a regular raster-effect road game (ala OutRun). The Super Nintendo version was a Mode 7 game. The Saturn version was a more advance Mode 7 game. And the Playstation version featured a fully polygonal road. This version probably has the shortest rendering distance i've ever seen on Playstation, playing the 8-players split-screen (even shorter than Driver 2).



It has an unofficial translation but, afaik, it is not 100% stable.

The Spanish translation is perfectly playable. I already finished it three times and yes, it is an amazing game.
Any availablie information link ?
 

stranno

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Any availablie information link ?
The Spanish version (1.1) is available on Romhacking.
The English version was banned from Romhacking because a disagreement between the author and the guy who compiled the patch, it seems it wasnt ready and, afaik, it is not 100% stable. I dont know if it can be finished.

You have an PM ;-)
 

Zelent

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Sep 13, 2019
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Ape Escape is a good one.

Bust a Groove 1 and Bust a Groove 2 are also incredible games that have been lost to time.
I can't believe they never made more of these types of games!
 
Oct 26, 2018
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Also check out Colony Wars. I think I only played the first one. I'm going to assume the sequels are better, but I don't know.

Smooth 60 fps space fighting. Lots of loading screens. Hit detection is totally wonky. Definitely an action geared space game. So don't expect Wing Commander stories or cut scenes.

 
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Rat Rage

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This thread is getting good. Thanks everyone for participating. There are games in here I've never heard about (and I consider myself a huge PS1 fan), which have caught my interest. Will definitely check them out!
 
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Oct 26, 2018
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Not really hidden since it was well known, but one of fav games was Ace Combat 2.

I never played AC3 Electrosphere.... (I don't think I did!?), but AC2 was awesome. Chunky polygons but a smooth 30 fps.

First person mode is so much better than third person. Feels much faster with things whizzing by you.

 
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Shit. I never played that one. Never even rented either, but looking at YT vids, I would have liked it. It's like a 90s bloody twin stick shooter.

Reason why I didn't bother was I remember one mag give it a 5 or 6/10. So I bailed.
 
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Skyfox

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Shit. I never played that one. Never even rented either, but looking at YT vids, I would have liked it. It's like a 90s bloody twin stick shooter.

Reason why I didn't bother was I remember one mag give it a 5 or 6/10. So I bailed.
Nah it's great, but not for everyone and reviewers sometimes misunderstand odd gems!

Cool music, fun weapons, stuff youd never get away with today (butchering absolutely everyone in what appears to be a mental institute while dressed as a baby).

Levelling up that plasma beam is the best. I still play it on my vita (streamed from the original ps1 disc via ps3 as they never released it digitally). Its increasingly rare as a disc as it's so old.

25 years old and was the pinnacle of cutting edge at the time! Still holds up ☢
 

Slateee

Formerly 'kawaii_mom'
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Ape Escape is a good one.
it's not so hidden but still I feel like most people haven't played it. It was the first game to require dualshock analog control and imo still one of the best/creative uses for them (along side Katamari Damacy & Space Fisherman) and is easily in the top rankings for best 3D platformer on the system. I grew up on Crash and Spyro and only got to Ape Escape in my 20s. WHAT A SHAME!!