Here are 5 rare PS1 games that you need in your collection before it’s too late. One of which is actually cheap right now!
Do you hate micro transactions? How about games shipping out full of bugs and glitches? Do loot crates make you angry? Don`t you love it when you buy a game and before you get to play it you have to download a 45 Gigabyte update?
It didn’t always used to be like this! Way back in the mid to late 1990s video games shipped complete! With lovable stories and lovable characters! It was a great time to be a gamer! There was so much passion and love put into every game! With modern gaming disasters and scandals happening about every week (Looking at you Metal Gear Survive as well as you Battlefront 2) there has been a slow return to retro gaming over the last few years.
Whether you are an avid retro game collector or someone who is new to retro gaming we at Gaming LAD gave you covered! You need to act fast though! Some of these games are only going to skyrocket in price and only so many copies actually exist! When they are gone they are gone! There is no coming back and please, if you happen to score one of these babies protect it with your life! Here are 5 Rare and Valuable PS1 Games that you to add to your collection before it’s too late!
1) Lunar Silver Star Story – Complete.
Factory Sealed: $375 – $500
Used: $100 – $175
Lunar Silver Star Story Complete is somewhat of an oddity. First released on the Sega Saturn in 1996, it was actually a remake of Lunar: The Silver Star which was released on the Sega CD genesis add on in 1992. The story doesn’t end there however. It was then re-remade for the Sony PlayStation in 1998 with a north American release in 1999. The game was also shipped in a standard version packed in a jewel case and came with a soundtrack disc and your typical manual. The price listed above however is for the strangely more commonly found complete edition which ships inside a box covered in holographic artwork containing both game discs, a soundtrack disc, a ‘’The Making of Lunar’’ disc which is essentially a DVD that is on a normal black PlayStation disc as well as a hard back expanded game manual. The game play isn’t too different than your standard JRPG however when ported to the PlayStation cutscenes were now replaced by beautifully hand draw animation complete with voice acting with the rest of the game playing out from a top down view with 2D sprites and backgrounds.
Lunar never obtained a greatest hits reprint and didn’t sell well which is a shame because with all the ports and the awesome packaging you can tell that the creators loved what they had made. Lunar deserves to be played, it had an unfortunate start through no fault of its own. (Found mine for a steal at a local electronics store for dirt cheap!)
2) Suikoden II.
Factory Sealed: $425 – $???
Used: $125 – $200
Suikoden II developed by Konami ‘’Thanks for ruining Metal Gear’’ Studios. It was originally going to be released on in internally developed Konami games console slated to release in 1993 or 1994 before being cancelled. The Suikoden series was then scrapped. With the release of the Sony PlayStation development on Suikoden II was restarted with the plan for it to actually be one of Konami`s first offerings on the PlayStation. The developers not wanting to rush instead released a prequal to Suikoden II mid-development titling it surprise, surprise, Suikoden! The first Suikoden sold fairly well. In 1999 Suikoden II came to north America, the game that first started development in 1993.
Suikoden II broke the mold for traditional JRPG`s at the time. You could recruit over 100 playable characters which wildly increased replay-ability which is something JRPGS both then and now struggle with. The game featured THREE different battle systems, a traditional turn-based system pitting your party against a group of enemies, a more cinematic one on one duel system, as well as a MASSIVE turn-based strategy system pitting entire armies against one another.
Unfortunately, despite being an awesome game and pushing the limits of the JRPG genre as well as receiving great reviews. No body bought Suikoden II. That’s it, that’s all folks, it was just one of those games that didn’t sell well. It shipped to retailers one time and was never reprinted. Konami went on to release several other Suikoden games on the PlayStation 2 but it just doesn’t compare to its little brother on the PlayStation 1. This is definitely a game you should get while you still can. (I had to import mine from Italy with a ruined manual and broken case. >_> It was on a boat for 3 months)
3) Valkyrie Profile.
Factory Sealed: $750 – $1,000
Used: $100 – $200
Valkyrie Profile was one of the last releases by the company Enix (the makers of Star Ocean before square ruined it) before its merger with Square Soft. The game released just before Christmas 1999 in japan and in the summer of 2000 in North America. It was a commercial success selling over 700,000 copies. However, 649,000 of those units sold were in japan leaving only 73,000 copies having been sold in both the PAL regions as well as North America assuming the sales were split even that means only 36, 500 copies are floating around North America give or take of course.
Valkyrie profile is a JRPG-platformer hybrid. The game contains beautiful 2D sprites over 2D backgrounds however the level of detail in these sprites and backgrounds is astounding. Due to the games sales success in japan it received a port the PSP in the mid 2000`s but much like the quality of a vinyl record on a record player there is no better feeling or experience as to own and playing the original game on the original format.
If you can find a copy and you have the money to spend, buy this game, put it in a zip-lock bag, find a time capsule and bury it. This is another game that will only increase in value (I snagged my copy from an eBay auction at the very last second for 99$, and it’s not for sale stop asking.)
4) Thousand Arms.
Factory Sealed: $125 – $325
Used: $45 – $70
Thousand Arms is a highly enjoyable however meagerly talked about game. It was developed by Red Company and published by Atlus. The game released in Japan in 1998 and saw a 1999 release year for North America. This was the one and only game developed by Red Company for the Sony PlayStation. Its both surprising and uncanny how and why it was released in North America but it happened! The game came packaged with cool stickers for your memory cards as well as a cool holographic hologram card. The games manual also contained a mail in offer for a free Thousand Arms Soundtrack disc as well as a multimedia CD that could be inserted into your PC for access to desktop themes as well as other cool content.
Thousand Arms is a very unique game. It contains 2D pixel sprites that are rather adorable within a completely 3D polygonal environment. The battle system is rather weird, rather than your party standing side by side and all participating in battle your characters form a line with only one character fighting the enemy while those in the back rows are in a supportive role. However, what makes this game extremely unique and entertaining is the dating sim themes.
While not being the main focus of the game per se it does play an important role. Your main character is a black smith and the only way to upgrade your weapons is to go on dates with the female party members. Each girl can add different attributes to the weapons your team carries and at times the dialogue can go from hilariously entertaining to slightly cringy but in a good Japanese anime style type of way. This title has beautiful sprites, Japanese anime styled cutscenes and a superb English dub.
Thousand Arms was not a commercial success and didn’t sell well. It never received a greatest hits re-print and never received a sequel or a spin-off. Currently the game is selling for fairly cheap on E-bay even complete copies. This is likely due to the fact that so few people know it exists so pick it up now before too many people read this article! (I rented this game at the hormone fueled age of 13 I loved this game with all my heart don’t judge me!)
Factory Sealed – $350 – $450
Used – $40 – $70
Koudelka is a cross between a survival horror game and a JRPG. This was the Debut game from the developer Sacnoth and published by SNK in japan back in 1999. The game was almost published by EA (Thank god that didn’t happen) for the North American and PAL regions but somehow Infogrames scored the deal. Koudelka plays and feels like a nice cross between Resident Evil and Parasite Eve. It didn’t review that great and as a result sold poorly. The IP owners talked about a possible re-release for PC via steam back in 2015 but nothing has come to fruition as of yet. If you are a fan of Survival Horror you definitely should look into this gem!
That’s a wrap folks! These games are not only expensive and rare but they are also amazing games that should not be forgotten about! If you have the cash get them while there hot! If your tight on moolah take a weekend trip and check out your local Flea Markets, Re-Sale shops and electronics stores! You will never know what you`ll find! If you don’t find any of these games you may find some other beloved game from your childhood and you will be supporting small local business as well!
If your a long time fan of the game or JRPGs in general and would like to network with a great community check out my Facebook group and discord server below. Where you can find other like-minded JRPG fans where we share regular retro JRPG news and content.