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10 Best PS1 Secrets, Ranked

CBR 11/30/2022 Patrick Arellano
© Provided by CBR

Sony's first foray into the console market, the PlayStation, has become one of the biggest names in the industry. The brand has recently reached its fifth iteration with no signs of slowing down. However, there are still plenty of reasons for players to check out the little console that started it all.

RELATED: 10 PS1 Games Critics Loved, But Haven't Aged Well

It's been over two decades since the original PlayStation was discontinued, but people are still discovering neat little secrets and hidden features. Since many of its successors are backward compatible with PS1 titles, gamers likely sold their original consoles long ago. However, there are still plenty of surprises for those who have these consoles lying around.

Players Could Play Their Game Boy Titles On The Console

Many gamers probably know that Sony's PlayStation console was originally intended to be a CD-based add-on to the Super Nintendo before both parties went their separate ways. Once Sony decided to go into the industry independently, it made several adjustments to its machine. However, the console could be modified to run some of the Big N's titles.

With the help of a third-party peripheral known as the Super GB Booster, players could play their Game Boy titles on Sony's 32-bit console. It was undoubtedly useful for players who didn't have a Super Game Boy and a SNES lying around.

The PlayStation Had A Mouse

The PlayStation 1 was a cheap alternative for players who wanted to try out first-person shooters and graphic adventure titles, but couldn't afford a high-end PC to run them. Doom, Riven, Broken Sword, and even Quake II all had versions that could be played on Sony's 32-bit console.

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However, there's no denying that these genres work much better with a mouse and keyboard than with a controller. Fortunately, Sony's console had just the peripheral for those gamers. The PlayStation Mouse was only compatible with a handful of titles, and eventually faded into obscurity.

The Nature Of Psycho Mantis' Demonstrations

The Psycho Mantis boss fight from the original Metal Gear Solid is a notable highlight that mixes the game mechanics and hardware with the story. To demonstrate his psychic prowess, Mantis tells the players which games they enjoy playing and their play habits. For example: if players neglect to save their progress,

Mantis will say, "You have not saved often. You are somewhat reckless." Now, everyone knows that it's all a trick. The game is simply reading players' memory cards to get info on what games they play and how effectively they play them.

PlayStation Black Disc Contained Secret Messages

PlayStation game discs utilized Redbook audio for their soundtracks and extensive voice-overs, resulting in players being able to listen to some of it on their CD players. However, many games, such as the JRPGs localized by Working Designs and Castlevania Symphony of the Night, had secret messages discouraging players from doing this.

Lunar Eternal Blue had its main villain praising the player for listening to the outtakes the easy way instead of completing the game legitimately. In contrast, Symphony had Alucard chastising the player before an unused music track played.

The Console Was One Of The Best CD Players

It's hard to believe that a game console from 1994 could outclass dedicated CD players released in even the 2000s, but it's true. Audiophiles have gone on record lavishing Sony's console with praise for its uncompressed audio quality.

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Jeff Day of 6moons.com praised the machine as late as 2007, stating that it was "better than just about every multi-kilobuck digital source." While competing CD players charged upwards of 6,000 dollars to offer the same level of performance, the PlayStation 1 went for a considerably cheaper 30 dollars when its more cutting-edge successors were on shelves.

Players Could Store Their Data On Floppy Discs

Before the days of internal storage and cloud saves made things so much more convenient, any saved data for games on consoles was usually stored on memory cards. However, these things weren't cheap, and many games, such as Final Fantasy VII and Legacy of Kain Blood Omen, required the use of these things to complete them.

However, players with a bunch of floppy discs lying around had a cheap way of storing all those saves. Players had to buy a Datel PS1 Memory Drive in order to transfer these saves onto their floppies.

The Console Could Play Burned Discs

One of the contributing factors to the failures of consoles such as the Atari 2600 and the Panasonic 3DO was the lack of robust copy protection. It was amazingly easy to make a fraudulent reproduction of a legitimate title and play it on these machines. When companies such as Nintendo and Sega came into the gaming scene, they made sure to protect their hardware from pirates.

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However, there was a surprisingly simple workaround to the PlayStation's copy protection. All players had to do was swap an official PS1 disc out and replace it with a burned disc two times as soon as the black screen popped up.

Crash And Spyro Games Had Secret Demos

Naughty Dog and Insomniac had a very interesting parallel history with Sony. Both companies are famous for their cartoon platformer franchises, such as Crash Bandicoot and Spyro the Dragon. This resulted in a bit of a friendly rivalry between the two developers as they shared technology and even featured hidden demos in their games.

Players who entered a special code into some Crash and Spyro games found hidden demos of the other franchise. For example, Crash Bandicoot Warped featured a demo for the original Spyro, while the second Spyro had one for Crash Team Racing.

The Console Actually Worked Better Upside Down

There's always that feeling of dread when players put the disc in and wait during the startup screen to see if the console has read it. It always provokes feelings of frustration and sorrow when it freezes on that black screen. Should players reset the console? Should they clean the disc? Should they go as far as to clean the console's optical lens?

Fortunately, there is one workaround that's deceptively simple yet effective. Just turn the console upside down. It turns out the laser is more focused on the disc when it's played at this angle.

Players Can Restore Their Deleted Saves

There's nothing more soul-crushing to players than accidentally deleting a game save file that they've spent hours on. It's amazing how such a simple mistake can undo so much progress. If only there were an equally simple solution. As a matter of fact, an easy fix that wasn't advertised was discovered many years later.

Players can put those feelings of dread aside as a simple trick can immediately restore all that lost progress. To achieve this, they must simply press all four shoulder buttons twice.

NEXT: 10 Harsh Realities Of Replaying PS1 Games

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