279 – On Reminiscing 3 Classic PlayStation 1 Games

The COVID-19 pandemic has made a number of people revisit their old gaming consoles to alleviate the boredom of being indoors. As for me, however – my days of console gaming are over. The last gaming console I ever owned was the first PlayStation, back when I was 9 years old. I stopped console gaming when I turned 17 or 18, eventually dropping out when I became 19.

But even though I kept the old PlayStation console in our attic, some games have left an indelible mark in me as a gamer. More than twenty years on, some of these titles would either get a remastered version or serve as a basis for other franchise titles. I’m at that point in my life where even the latest edition of a gaming console is a frivolity for me. But give me a good laptop and an emulator, and I’d gladly play these games again and reminisce!

Here are three games that have left a lasting memory on me.

Ehrgeiz: God Bless The Ring

Way before Dissidia: Final Fantasy where heroes and villains from the franchise fought against each other, there was this fighting game called Ehrgeiz: God Bless The Ring. It notably featured a number of characters from Final Fantasy VIII, and a separate quest mode featuring some elements of the main game. I managed to finish this mode called Brand New Quest, but I found its ending rather short and underwhelming.

FF7 characters available from the start include Cloud Strife, Tifa, and Sephiroth – with Yuffie Kisaragi, Vincent Valentine and Zack Fair unlockable with multiple playthroughs. Brand New Quest main protagonists Koji Masuda and Claire Andrews are also unlockable in the main game. Whichever character you use, the most challenging part here is beating the final boss while the credits roll!

Squaresoft (now Square Enix) and DreamFactory were the ones behind this title. Unfortunately, there has been no news if Ehrgeiz: God Bless The Ring would see a reboot.

Jade Cocoon: Story of the Tamamayu

Jade Cocoon: Story of the Tamamayu is one of the rather underrated role-playing games for the PS1. It featured character designs from Katsuya Kondō, the animator behind KiKi’s Delivery Service. While some of the cutscenes were rather dragging, the surreal forest environment and soundtrack reminiscent of tribal music left a lasting impression.

The game’s capture mechanism is similar to that of Pokémon – enemy minions need to be weakened first before they can be caught. Most of the creatures in Jade Cocoon: Story of the Tamamayu look like insects (as the name implies), but some of them are also modeled after aquatic creatures and other members of the animal kingdom. The turn-based system can be a hassle at times, especially when multiple enemies are involved. I finished this game but didn’t bother to go through the Eternal Corridor after the first playthrough.

Genki and Crave Entertainment brought Jade Cocoon: Story of the Tamamayu to life, but the latter company folded up in 2012. Meanwhile, Genki went on to produce racing games and the Kengo franchise – a spiritual successor to Square Enix’s Bushido Blade series.

Monster Rancher 2

Many gamers cite Monster Rancher 2 as one of the games that left a lasting impression on them – myself included. This early example of a life simulation game was proposed as a more settled version of other monster titles compared to its contemporaries Pokémon and Digimon. Players raise their monsters on a ranch, experience the four seasons, join monster tourneys, and participate in expeditions.

Getting rare monsters is the game’s main challenge – and creating mixed-breed monsters adds to the excitement. Monsters you obtain impart certain attributes (e.g. space / futuristic, desert / Middle Eastern, armored, evil, godly / angelic, etc.) to your existing creature. Despite playing this game many times, I have yet to make a monster reach the so-called Major 4. Most creatures I obtain die within a span of two years at most – but a lot of YouTube videos now have tutorials on how to breed monsters beyond that duration.

Monster Rancher 2 is one of the main titles developed by Tecmo before it merged with game developer Koei (of Dynasty Warriors fame). More than 20 years later, Koei Tecmo released a re-mastered version of the game. Unfortunately, only the Japanese version is available for now – with an English release seemingly in the pipes.

How about you? What particular titles from this console still stay with you until now? What PS1 titles did you rediscover while on lockdown?

That’s it for this throwback post; until the next entry, stay safe!

(AUTHOR’S NOTE: The featured image for this post came from Karolina Grabowska on the free stock image site Pexels.)


21 thoughts on “279 – On Reminiscing 3 Classic PlayStation 1 Games

  1. sobrang blurry na ng memories but I also played Monster Rancher before hahah I play whatever I see from my bro anyway and when he stopped, I stopped too. It just feels nostalgic every time I see old games because it was our bonding moment not until they start working huhu

  2. My favorites are: Crash Bandicoot, Dance Dance Revolution, Bust a Move and our family favorite, Poy Poy Cup — have you played that? It’s the best family game ever.

    I also enjoyed Pocket Fighter but it’s only til Ps3, kasi wala na sa Ps4 eh… I can’t imagine I’d enjoy as much if Ps5 will launch their super enhanced version if ever — there’s something about the pixelated view 😀

    • Interesting picks! 😁 On a side note, I heard Crash Bandicoot 3 now has a remastered version! (The franchise is going strong, in-expand na nga nila yung universe haha)

      I do remember DDR and Bust-A-Move, but mainly for the soundtracks! For DDR, e medyo partial ako kay Reo Nagumo (NMR) – he’s a mainstay when it comes to the DDR franchise! For Bust A Move, it’s always Hiro’s theme (Natural Playboy)! 🕺

      As for Poy Poy Cup and Pocket Fighter, I’ve heard of the games before — but hindi ko nalaro. 😦

      (Thanks for stopping by, and thanks for following the blog! ☺️)

      • Hehe, we used to always focus on fun games as there weren’t any boys in our family.

        Yes, Crash Bandicoot keeps on evolving, getting better and better. I am excited to play Crash Bandicoot 4, it was released last 12th but I haven’t seen anything in stores yet, plus, we got sick…

        Oh yeah, DJ Nagureo is really good! His songs were best played by my middle sister…

        Nakikisali sa usapan yung husband ko, sya daw ang favorite nya is Castlevania: Symphony of the Night 😂

      • Hopefully, you can purchase the disc ngayong medyo umayos na pakiramdam mo. 🙂 And good to hear that I’m not the only one who likes the Bemani legend! May tradition nga na every November 20, magco-comment sa tune niyang “20 November” on Youtube! 😂

        Konami fan din pala husband mo, parang si Mr. A! Though he has different preferences pagdating sa titles, being a fan of Metal Gear and Suikoden!

  3. I remember playing Digimon games a lot when I had a PS1, though I never really braved at least one of them to a clear until recently. As much as I enjoy playing RPGs, so much that I consider it my favorite video game genre, it actually took quite a while for me to get used to the genre, with Pokemon dominating my gateway years there, followed by Final Fantasy being a culture shock to me, I think.

    • That’s good to hear! 😀 I’ve played Digimon World 1 and 2, but unfortunately both games didn’t appeal to me. 😔 I did play Digimon Rumble Arena though, and enjoyed using Omnimon as a main character!

      May I ask what particular Digimon title did you finish? 🙂

      • Well, they’re actually World 1 and World 3. World 2, well, I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to finish it with how much of a drag the gameplay mechanics are, hahaha~ Oh, and I have played Rumble Arena too before! Used to play that with a brother and our cousins, too! 😀

      • Woah, that’s nice! I would agree with you on World 2 — the “dungeon” type gameplay and the virus-vaccine quality in that title was rather confusing.

        And Rumble Arena is definitely an underrated game! The final boss on arcade mode (Reapermon) is slightly annoying at first, but keeping your distance is key to defeating him! (Sadly, I have yet to unlock Impmon / Beelzemon there.) 😦

  4. Not much with the PS1 kasi I became more of a “gamer” when we got a PS2 but the Capcom fighting games made a mark on me. Basta di CAPCOM gumawa, di ako fan.

    On the other hand, I’ve been discovering wrestling games that were released only in Japan but that’s more of the time I went with emulation na.

  5. Pingback: 281 – On A 2021 First Quarter Update (Part 1: The Blogger) | The Monching's Guide

  6. Pingback: 309 – On Recapping 2021: The Year That Was (Part 1) | The Monching's Guide

Likes don't have value anymore here on WordPress, so drop in your two cents below and share your thoughts!

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s