Video gaming started for me, back in 1980. My Father brought home the Atari 2600. Yes, I know, I said “My PlayStation Story”, but it all started somewhere. From day one, for better or for worse, I was hooked on gaming. We had that Atari for seven years and, in that time, I wanted to get every new system out there. It was not to be the case, at least for a while.
In 1987, my friends all got their Nintendo Entertainment Systems (NES). My Brother and I wanted one so bad, we kept asking our parents for one. We pleaded our case, highlighting to my Father the inferior games the 2600 had. We pointed out; the generation skips that had occurred with Atari as well. We wanted the 5200, and didn't get it. At one point, we even asked for the Sega Master System, and didn't get that either.
Christmas of 1987 rolled around, and to our delight, we saw a big box under the Christmas tree. My Brother and I both ran to that gift first, and ripped off the paper. To our dismay, it was the Atari 7800. I know; we should have been grateful for getting anything, but while the World was moving away from Atari, we were stuck once again. We got games for the system, but did not give it much attention for the next two years. I would go to friends' houses and play NES all the time. My Brother and I had given up hope of ever getting the NES, and started to stray from gaming all together.
Christmas Eve 1989, (I have shared part of this on another thread, so if you read it, please bear with me), my Brother and I were cleaning up after dinner, when from down in the basement came the 8-bit sound of Super Mario. (I am getting to the PlayStation part. What is a story without any buildup?). We ran down the stairs, and pretty much stayed down in the basement for the entire week. I think my parents regretted getting the system after that. Regardless, my gaming enthusiasm was reborn!
Fast forward a few years, and past the SNES acquisition, (funny story, Brother and I bought it with money from the last check we got after getting laid off. Not a wise way to spend one’s “last foreseeable” paycheck). I digress; I was friends with this kid who got every system that was ever released. He had ALL the systems, but one day he brought over to my house, the Phillips / Magnavox 3DO (I know, still not PS, but give it a chance). Cartridge gaming was just about ruined, in my mind, with this new gem. As much as we liked that system, he told me he was anticipating the release of a new CD based gaming system, by Sony of all companies. To those who have grown up knowing Sony as a game developer and Console maker, yes, there was a point when this was surprising news. Regardless, I was in.
The system sold so many preorders, that on the release date, I could not even play the system. I had traded in the SNES and all games for it, got store credit, and waited patiently for the call to come from Babbage’s. Three weeks later, the system was in for me to pick up. I rushed out and picked it up, along with Battle Arena Toshinden and Wipeout. I am surprised it did not burn out, I played it so much.
A year or two went by, and the console started to stagnate. Additionally, the N64 released, and my old friend Nintendo started to call me back. I felt like I had to give it a chance. I traded in my PS1 for an N64 (mistake). I played it for a while, enjoying fully; Golden Eye, Mario 64, and Ocarina of time (and some other titles). I thought PS1 was going to die out, so I figured it wouldn't hurt much. I was wrong.
I was at another friend's house one day, and there were a bunch of people there. They had all gone over to watch my friend’s Brother play Final Fantasy VII. I couldn't figure out what all the fuss was about, and then I saw it. It was fantastic. Later, they played Triple Play Baseball, and I thought to myself; what have I done. I immediately went out and bought another PS1. I picked up FF VII, and played it until my eyes hurt. I was back with PS, never to leave again!
The day came when I heard about the PS2 release. The night before release, I skipped my College class, and went down to my local Best Buy. It was 3:30 p.m., and I was third in line! It would be a cold October night, but I had thought ahead and brought my Winter Sleeping bag. A lot of people ended up showing for the release, and I was glad I came early. We all took turns holding spots for bathroom and coffee breaks. I even got to get something to eat.
When the doors opened in the morning, they started by handing availability vouchers to those in line. A woman from around the building (in line) complained when she didn't get one. She explained that she had been there since 4 a.m.. I told her I had been there since 3:30. She replied with some comment about it only being a half hour before her, and she didn't understand. I corrected her assumption, by telling her I meant 3:30 p.m., the prior afternoon. She wasn't happy, but I was.
Although there were really no games available at the time of release, I was glad to have my system. At the very least, I now had a DVD. At this time DVD players were still pricey, and the PS2 was both a DVD player and a gaming system.
Throughout the PS2 years, I was very happy with the system and all releases for it. I did not ever go back to Nintendo, although I now own a Wii as well. I wanted a PS3 very much, but decided to wait until my PS2 was completely obsolete. That and I did not feel like risking hypothermia again.
I finally got my PS3 back in November of 2011. Despite not getting much gaming time these days, I fully enjoy the system, the network, and everything associated with it. I did not even consider an Xbox, because my heart then and forever belonged to Sony PlayStation.
When the PS4 comes out, I will most likely take the same approach I did with waiting on the PS3. One thing is for sure though, I will get one eventually.