As they have gone from low memory cartridges to Blu-Ray discs that hold dozens of gigabytes, video games have evolved with the times. There is a sense of nostalgia, though, for many for the older formats of video games. The original PlayStation was at an awkward moment in gaming evolution as consoles moved away from cartridges and toward CD storage. This extra space gave developers more room to work on better graphics and grander worlds to explore. The PS1 specifically housed some pretty elaborate and expansive RPGs. Some of these did not get large printing amounts or were just so sought after that they vanished from the market. Today, the players who seek these nostalgic RPGs may have to pay a pretty penny. Here are ten of the rarer and more expensive RPGs for the first of Sony’s consoles, the PS1.
Published in the US by Working Design, Alundra sold relatively well in its first month when it launched in December of 1997. Moving about 100,000 units to start, it received positive reviews across the board and even warranted itself a sequel in Alundra 2: A New Legend Begins. While this one is available in digital format for the PS3 and PS Vita for $5.99, that is not what collectors are looking to purchase.
9. Tactics Ogre
Tactics Ogre for the PlayStation was actually a remaster/port of the Super Famicom version released back in 1995. Despite being the first Tactics Ogre to make it over to the US, it is actually the 7th entry in the series. The Quest developed Japanese tactics RPG has a cult following overseas, but the game was met with a rather limited release. Due to it being such a rare game back at release, it continues to hold high value.
8. Vanguard Bandits
Another tactics RPG, which was a popular development style in Japan, Vanguard Bandits hosted a world where soldiers would engage in combat via mech battles. With a large cast of characters and a large variety of missions, Vanguard Bandits offered a massive amount of content for fans of tactics games. The packaging included a demo disc for Lunar 2: Eternal Blue Complete and was a rather limited release in the US.
7. Persona 2: Eternal Punishment
Persona was always a cult classic, but the third entry on PlayStation 2 sent the series skyrocketing in both fame and value. Persona 2: Eternal Punishment was released in North America in late 2000 after being released almost six months earlier in Japan. Originally a two part entry as the “second” Persona, the other half, Innocent Sin never saw North American release on the original PlayStation. Met with positive reviews across the board, the game performed well critically but was not a massive sales draw. The series was reprinted in a limited run in 2008 to celebrate the release of Persona 4, which may have attributed to it being slightly less valuable than the original.
6. Brigandine: The Legend of Forsena
Released in North America by Atlus in 1998, Brigandine: The Legend of Forsena is a tactics RPG. Brigandine featured several playable nations in the story line which allowed plenty of replay value. Brigadine was a more traditional tactics RPG focused around conquering enemy castles with an array of human troops and mythical creatures. This was a rather minor release in North America but as with many of the rpgs on this list, collectors held onto their copies and many were kept in excellent edition.
5. Tales of Destiny
The Tales series has grown to a cult following here in North America as of recent with standouts like Tales of Vesperia for the Xbox 360 and the upcoming anticipated entry, Tales of Berseria. The first entry to make it overseas was the action RPG, Tales of Destiny in 1998 for the PlayStation. Despite being a new series, the debut did generally well earning decent reviews thanks to a strong localization by Namco. Thanks to the series strong following and being a game that holds up well, Tales of Destiny has held some strong value.
4. Persona Revelations Series
An early Atlus release for the PlayStation, Persona Revelations came out in North America in late 1996, a few months after the Japanese release. A much darker JRPG, instead of focusing on the fantasy worlds that Squaresoft and Enix had developed, Persona was oriented around demons and starred high school students. Gameplay was turn based combat along with a rather deep story and numerous demons to collect and fuse. The early Persona games have rose in value over the last decade as the series went from obscurity to main stream in North America.
3. Tales of Destiny 2
Known as Tales of Eternia in every other region except North America, Tales of Destiny 2 is not a direct sequel to Tales of Destiny. It is a continuation of the series but the naming here helped draw a line to the first as it did reasonably well in its North American debut. With better overall reviews than its predecessor, Tales of Destiny was critically acclaimed, but the entry sold less overall world wide which could attribute to it’s higher value.
2. Suikoden II
As of recent, the genius and value of Suikoden II has sky rocketed, but when this gem first released it was privy to poor sales despite its positive reviews. The lackluster release led to no reprints being made, thus increasing the value of Suikoden II in North America. This strategic-like RPG features a massive cast of recruitable characters and a rather mature and dark storyline akin to something you would find in the Game of Thrones books. Besides its original release on the PlayStation, players can now download Suikoden II on the PlayStation 3 and PS Vita.
1. Valkyrie Profile
A true hit for Enix on the PlayStation, Valkyrie Profile was a critical and commercial hit. This action RPG is heavily influenced by Norse mythology and features players controlling 24 characters throughout the narrative. Despite a re-release on the PSP as Valkyrie Profile: Lenneth, the original has held its value as the game has aged well with its comprehensive combat system and compelling narrative. There was a follow up released on the PlayStation 2 titled Valkyrie Profile 2: Silmeria.