It might be difficult to believe, but the PlayStation 2 that many of us grew up loving and playing came out almost 20 years ago. It set the tone for a generation of consoles, and during its production time, which lasted about 13 years, it sold about 155 million consoles. In 2013, production was finally ceased and since then it's been gaining popularity as a retro gaming device and sort of a small, precious thing that most devoted console gamers keep in a box at their house. Although technology back then wasn't what it is now, there's still a bunch of surprising things the PS2 was capable of.
10 It Can Be Used As A Desktop PC
The PS2 isn't entirely insignificant with what it can do, which is why Sony provided a special package for those interested in using the console to make their own games and even use the Internet. This was an incredible step forward in enabling the indie gaming industry, which was pretty much non-existent at the time. For those who were committed to developing their own games, they could snatch this cool package of a keyboard, mouse, Linux CD, Network Adapter, installation disc and a hard drive with about 40 GB of memory inside. Not bad at all for its time!
9 You Can Fight In Real Time
We've come a long way with add-ons and motion-detecting games. Nowadays the PS4 VR lets us play incredibly immersive games while moving our arms and our head. Back in the day, however, the closest thing we had to that aside from the EyeToy was something called the Thrustmaster.
This add-on was made by a third-party company and could be used to fight in the so-called Fighting Arena. This was a great way to get a workout in, but demanded a lot of space in one's living room. Thankfully we have Just Dance these days!
8 It Can Connect To The PSP
Remember PSP? Well, just like the PS Vita can be connected to the PS4 for some extra functionality, the PSP at its time could be connected to the PS2. Sure, the functions weren't exactly as extensive as with the PS4, which allows you to use it as an extra controller or even play remotely, but for its time it was revolutionary. As PSP emerged as one of the most popular handheld consoles of its time, it provided players with extra content on a few games and even new powers that weren't included in the full console version.
7 It Can Connect To Broadband Internet
It's no surprise to any of us these days that a console can connect to the Internet. In fact, we've come to think of that as a given. When PS2 came out, initially this feature hadn't been fully planned out for the console. As the years went by Sony was quick to come out with a Network Adapter, however, which allowed players to connect themselves to broadband Internet and use some of the online features of some PS2 games. It definitely set an example for the next consoles that came out, as the developers understood online features were kind of a necessity.
6 Play With Eight Players
Nowadays if we want to play with your friends, it's a simple task of everyone hopping on their own consoles and connecting to the Internet. At the time this feature wasn't as widely spread, however, and if people wanted to play together they needed to plug in more controllers.
The PS2 Multitap was an add-on that could allow players to connect up to eight different controllers to their PS2, which just seems like a staggering number for the time. Multiplayer functions have gone a long way, and we're thankful for it.
5 It Can Play Burned Discs And DVDs
In the early 2000s, it was still quite common to see most electronics perform one and only function. When PS2 was able to read DVDs and doubled not only as a gaming console but also as a movie theater, it became the one thing every teenager needed. Even better, the PS2 is able to read burned discs with the infamous Swap Magic disc. In a time when it was definitely more common to secretly download and share brand new games rather than buying them, this was the absolute best feature, despite the risks it posed to the player's console.
4 Early Motion Detection Through EyeToy
When cameras like Eye Toy first came out, most people probably thought of it as amazing. It was pretty clunky and had a lot of quality and detection issues, but it was something brand new, a sort of undiscovered territory for console games. The Eye Toy could be positioned on top of your TV, and would work with a bunch of different game titles. It would even come with its own arcade gaming disc with tons of interactive mini-games that would blur the line between reality and the virtual world.
3 It Has Tech Beyond Its Time
There's a tiny secret about the PS2 that most gamers probably never heard about. During the early 2000s, it was commonly thought the PS2 could only run its games to a resolution of 480i. This is quite measly when compared to what we're capable of producing now with the PS4 and Xbox One.
However, it was actually possible even at the time to up this resolution manually from the PS2 menu to about 1080i. This wouldn't work without its own issues of course, but for the small-time it did work in-game, it was a pretty awesome promise of what was to come in just a few years.
2 It Can Run PS1 Games
If you're a true nostalgic and love everything related to retro games, you'll be happy to know the PS2 lets you play all PS1 titles as well. Keep in mind, however, that you might experience some issues with saving your progress for your games if you're not using a PS1 memory card to do so. This is really good news for everyone who sold their PS1 years ago when PS2 came out and now regret not being able to relive those nostalgic moments from way back.
1 Horizontal And Vertical
Consoles are kind of sensitive machines, especially when it comes to the older ones. It's common knowledge you shouldn't carry your console around while a disc is inside and avoid manhandling it too much. The PS2 is actually quite special in this regard because it offered the players the option to set it up in two different ways. You could either stand it vertically like a tower of sorts and same some room on the table or just set it horizontally like a DVD reader. Whatever your choice was, it was more flexible compared to other consoles of its time.