Best PlayStation 2 games: the 20 greatest PS2 games of all time
The PlayStation 2 was a classic console - these are the games that made it.
Sony's PlayStation 2 - or PS2 as the cool kids called it - is one of the world's best-selling console, meaning it was pretty popular back in the day.
So it comes as little surprise there were a hell of a lot of great games on the PS2 - we'd wager some of the best ever made for gaming device. Big words.
To celebrate the facts that the PlayStation 2 is now 20 years old, we've been rooting through the nostalgia banks and have pulled out these 20 titles, to allow us to remember just how wonderful and brilliant and impossibly awesome the PS2 was.
Here's our pick of the 20 best PlayStation 2 games.
- The best retro games console revealed
- These are the best PlayStation One games
- Which is the best console? We go in-depth
Best PlayStation 2 games
1. Grand Theft Auto III/Vice City/San AndreasView now on Amazon
It's impossible to mention the PS2 without talking about GTA. While not a series exclusive to the console, it was synonymous with Sony's machine for a long time, and it's where most of us got our first taste of what would become the biggest franchise in the world. Epic, epic and epic again.
2. God Of War IIView now on Amazon
Taking all the insane violence and epic action of the first and ramping it up 300 notches, GOWII is the PS2's answer to all those summer blockbuster movies. It's big, dumb fun and one you can enjoy over and over again.
3. Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake EaterView now on Amazon
The second game was a let-down (be honest with yourself), but the third brought Snake & co. back in spectacular style - those boss battles, eating snakes (ahh, now the title makes sense), sneaking about in your camouflage... MGS3 was the best of the best for a long time.
4. Shadow Of The ColossusView now on Amazon
An utter delight in nigh-on every category, Shadow of the Colossus can still be felt resonating through all other games to this day. Buy it, play it, love it.
5. Burnout 3: TakedownView now on Amazon
Here's that silly fun racer to sit alongside the Gran Turismo titles: Burnout 3. So fast, so crash-y, such a great soundtrack and a phenomenal sense of speed. For us, this is still the high point of the series.
6. Ratchet And ClankView now on Amazon
PS2's very own Mario 64? Not quite, but Ratchet and Clank brought enough of its own brand of shooting-and-jumping to make it a classic in its own right
7. Gran Turismo 4View now on Amazon
Driving games are either silly fun (see later in this list) or insanely detailed - GT4 ticked the latter box. Hundreds of cars, dozens of tracks and some of the most intense, detailed racing we'd ever seen. Look at that dust trail. Just look at it.
8. OkamiView now on Amazon
Playing as a wolf-god in the water-painted world of Okami was, is and forever will be one of gaming's truly magical experiences. Like Zelda, but better.
9. Guitar Hero IIView now on Amazon
Back in the day, this was the game to play at a party. It may have been bettered on a technical level, but for us the love for Guitar Hero II will never fade.
10. Silent Hill 2View now on Amazon
For many, the world of survival horror has never reached a higher point than in Silent Hill 2 - aside from maybe in the PS4 demo PT, which was actually meant to be a Silent Hill sequel. Terrifying - and we're still fuming PT got axed.
11. SSX 3View now on Amazon
Tricky might have made people pay attention to EA's snowboarding series, but SSX 3 was the game that perfected the formula. In fact, it's almost like Burnout on a snowboard...
12. Devil May CryView now on Amazon
The third game was, technically, better, but it's the first where it all began and which we recall more fondly. Taking the Resident Evil formula and adding swords and fast-paced combos, DMC spawned a series that's still loved to this day.
13. Tekken 5View now on Amazon
Another series synonymous with PlayStation, even if it's no longer exclusive, Tekken 5 fixed the shoddy Tekken 4 and gave us a nice send off for the then-ageing PS2.
14. Timesplitters 3View now on Amazon
The PS2's trademark FPS series, even though it ended up on other formats, hit its peak with the third (and still last) game. Timesplitters 3 had a great, fun single-player mode and some incredible online action to rival the greats of the genre.
15. Final Fantasy XIIView now on Amazon
RPGs that suck up dozens of hours of your time aren't for everyone, but Final Fantasy XII is one everyone should at least try. Epic, fun and telling a good story, its only real downer is the awful main character (yep, we said it).
16. PES 6View now on Amazon
The best football game ever made? Quite possibly. When PES 6 came out it was king of virtual soccer, even if Adriano was hugely overpowered. And it's still amazing fun to this day.
17. Katamari DamacyView now on Amazon
Never mind the (excellent) game - rolling a ball around sticking things to it, increasing in size until you roll up the world - Katamari Damacy's soundtrack alone is enough to get it on this list.
18. WWE Smackdown: Here Comes The Pain!View now on Amazon
Back in the era when wrestling games were still good, there was one title that almost reached No Mercy-levels of brilliance: Here Comes the Pain. And you know what? It's still great now.
19. Psi-Ops: The Mindgate ConspiracyView now on Amazon
You can blow people's heads up with your brain before surfing off on a telekenisis-powered chunk of wall. What's not to love?
20. God HandView now on Amazon
Insanity got its own game in the form of God Hand, but then so did brilliance. Hard, obtuse, utterly silly, it's both unique and excellent.