There's been quite a bit of news lately on the next generation of consoles including the situation on backwards compatibility. For a few gamers this rose the question of "What's the point?" When the PS3 first launched there were only few models of the console that were backwards compatible with PS2 games, and this was great news to some folks...that is until they discontinued production, leaving all available future models of the console not backwards compatible. This angered some people and leaving many puzzled as to why Sony made such a decision.

I see this feature as a transfer phase between generations of gaming. People who want the new console, but have little to no interest in any of the new launch titles. So instead of wasting money on hardware that won't be used for a couple more weeks or months, backwards compatibility will fill in that gap, and maybe make your old games look a little nicer in the process. I feel this was Sony's thought process with the initial PS3 models, to have them backwards compatible for the first couple of months and by that time everyone who buys a PS3 should have a couple games they want to play without the need for backward compatibility. Unfortunately, I don't find this to be the case.

When I bought myself a PS2 I had never owned a PS1, so the backwards compatibility that was included worked perfectly for me. I could pay for one machine to play a ton of games between two separate consoles. When the PS3 launched I had no use for the feature since I planned on keeping the PS2 just for the PS1 compatibility. That, in turn, I had no problems with it not having the feature included. For others that may have not bought a PS2, it may or may not be a necessity.

One other note to backwards compatibility is in the name, "COMPATIBILITY". This is the definition of not ALL games will work for the newer console. There will be some where colors may be slightly different, graphics are a little lower quality, or the game will not load at all. This is mostly due to certain processors or chipsets used in the older console that were not included in the newer one. Usually it's the minority of games that use these specific chips that get the cut from the compatibility to run on the newer console. With situations like this, I would usually recommend spending the few extra dollars and getting the original console to ensure all your games work properly, but not until you've tested out your games to make sure they work alright on the newer console.

All in all it's mostly dependent on what you already have. If you have every console of one brand, the backwards compatibility may not be a must have, however if you want to save a little money and room it'll be perfect for you. Just be aware of any certain compatibility issues with some games, maybe look up a compatibility chart to see if the game you're curious about runs flawlessly or not. If the console does not provide the backwards compatibility then you're fresh out of luck and would have to spend the extra money for two consoles.


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