Did you know that Sony was working with Nintendo in developing Super Famicom before the project fell through?
As a result, they started working on their own home video game console.
PlayStation 1 was Sony’s entry into the fold, pegged directly against Nintendo 64 and Sega Saturn.
Industry critics considered it a gamble to pitch a new console against the established players. The gamble paid off and the dynamics of the home game console changed in a way that was unfathomable earlier.
In its long lifespan, over 7,000 games were released for PS1. They collectively sold 940 million copies of games, which was a record in itself during the time.
The beloved console continued to be sold even after PS2 hit the shelves. Sony discontinued production before the release of PlayStation 3.
This did not deter the fans, who still continue to play the PS1 games either on their old Playstation 1 or using a PS1 emulator on their phone or PC.
Here we have compiled a list of the top PS1 games of all time that you can play today on your PS1 or a PlayStation 1 emulator.
Table Of Contents
- Top 30 Best PS1 Games Of All Times
- 1. Final Fantasy VII
- 2. Gran Turismo (1997)
- 3. Tekken 3
- 4. Metal Gear Solid
- 5. Resident Evil
- 6. Crash Bandicoot: Warped
- 7. Tomb Raider
- 8. Crash Team Racing
- 9. Spyro the Dragon
- 10. Rayman
- 11. Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone
- 12. Oddworld’s Abe’s Oddysee
- 13. Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater
- 14. Frogger
- 15. Gran Turismo 2
- 16. Dino Crisis
- 17. Air Combat
- 18. WWF War Zone
- 19. Mortal Kombat Trilogy
- 20. Tetris Plus
- 21. Ape Escape
- 22. Chrono Cross
- 23. Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver
- 24. Silent Hill
- 25. Vagrant Story
- 26. Wipeout 2097
- 27. Twisted Metal 2
- 28. Ace Combat 2
- 29. Driver: You are the Wheelman
- 30. Mega Man Legends 2
- How to Play PS1 Games on PC?
- Which is the most sold PS1 game?
Top 30 Best PS1 Games Of All Times
1. Final Fantasy VII
A seventh installment in the Final Fantasy series, it is the best PS1 game in role-playing category. Winning several games of the year awards did put a stamp of quality on the videogame.
The game revolves around the protagonist, Cloud Strife, a mercenary working as a defender of the planet against eco-terrorism megacorporation.
There are three modes of play – the field, the world map, and the battle screen. As a player, you can explore the entire world of the 3D map.
2. Gran Turismo (1997)
Genre: Sim Racing
Gran Turismo is the best-selling game on PS1. This prompted the creators to start a series, producing 10 spinoffs and sequels.
As the name suggests, it is a racing game where you control your car and compete against AI-controlled opponents. Talking about the modes, we get Arcade and Simulation mode.
All in all, the game features 140 cars and 11 race tracks(that includes going reverse on them).
3. Tekken 3
Tekken has become synonymous with the fighting genre of video games. Arcade, along with PlayStation, made it popular across the world.
In its third installment, the game features a new cast of characters. The list of entrants includes the debut of several heavyweights.
Tekken 3 introduced beat ’em up a mini-game called Tekken Force. Many publications cited Tekken as the best PS1 game of all time.
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4. Metal Gear Solid
Genre: Action-adventure, stealth
Agent Solid Snake takes center stage in the game. He must filter through the nuclear facility while being stealthy.
Snake is recalled out of retirement by his superior, Colonel Roy Campbell. With the team’s help, the legendary infiltrator must get access to Shadow Moses, a nuclear site.
Swerving to the gameplay, the player has several stealth tactics and modes to use. He must use the radar and keep an eye on the evasion and infiltration mode to get through.
5. Resident Evil
Genre: Survival horror
You control either Chris Redfield or Jill valentine. Both a part of the elite task force, known as the S.T.A.R.S. They are investigating the disappearance of their team members.
The player is trapped in a mansion on Raccoon Island. He or she must uncover the mysteries and come out of the mansion alive.
In a nutshell, as a player, you will encounter different puzzles and mysteries that must be solved to move forward.
6. Crash Bandicoot: Warped
Crash Bandicoot: Warped is the third installment of the series. In line with the continuation, the game’s story takes place after the predecessor.
As a player, you must control Crash and Coco bandicoot. They must collect all 25 crystals, which are scattered across time. Much before the nefarious Doctor Neo Cortex and Uka Uka get ahold of them.
7. Tomb Raider
Initially released for Sega Saturn, the excellent reception prompted the release for PS1. The game’s protagonist is Lara Croft, an archeologist-adventurer on a mission to discover new artifacts.
The game is split up into four different zones – Egypt, Peru, Greece, and the forgotten continent of Atlantis. Lara is hired by Natla, a businesswoman, to find a precious artifact, Scion, which is buried inside the Tomb of Qualopec, situated in Peru.
As the story progress, Croft learns about the intentions of Natla and her ultimate goal with connection to Atlantis.
8. Crash Team Racing
Developed by the same team as Crash Bandicoot, the story has taken inspiration as well. A kart racing game where players get to race as the characters from the Crash Bandicoot universe.
We get 5 racing modes: Adventure, Time Trial, Arcade, Versus, and Battle. You can select 1 from the 8 characters to control. With the help of a PlayStation multitap, you can play with your friends.
9. Spyro the Dragon
When you are looking for a cute game to relax, this is the best PS1 game to play. You start a young purple dragon named Spyro, who is accompanied by his dragonfly friend, Sparx.
Spyro must rescue his fellow dragons who have been kidnapped by the antagonist, And along the way, recover all the treasures with it.
The dragon must visit all the dragon homeworlds, defeating the enemy forces on each of them for rescuing his fellow beings.
Rayman is a side-scrolling platform game. The main character is named Rayman, who must travel through six galaxies(The Dream Forest, Band Land, Blue Mountains, Picture City, The Caves of Skops, and Candy Château).
After freeing all the caged Electoons, Rayman will be able to confront the antagonist, Mr. Dark. But first, he must travel the world, gain powers from Betilla the Fairy before he can fight the odds.
11. Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone
Based on the Harry Potter movie of the same name and storyline. It follows Harry Potter, an orphaned wizard, who is left with his bullying relatives for ten years.
After discovering his wizard origins, Harry is sent to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. As a player, you control the character of Harry Potter from a third-person perspective.
On the PlayStation, the story and events are arranged in a different manner. The game is split into seven sections, out of which 4 are free to roam for exploration and collectibles.
The game was criticized for its underwhelming graphics. However, the license to the original Harry Potter helped it become the most successful and amongst the best PS1 game.
12. Oddworld’s Abe’s Oddysee
Genre: Cinematic Platformer
Coming to the two-dimensional games, we have Abe’s Oddysee. A game where the player controls the character, Abe. His objective is to travel across different screens, solving puzzles, powering through obstacles, and combating enemies.
Swerving to the story, Abe is a slave worker at the RuptureFarms, a large meat-processing farm. He overhears the owner’s plan to turn Mudokons like Abe into meat, owing to the plant’s failing business. As he decides to escape, Abe becomes a fugitive who manages to reach the Free Fire Zone.
With the help of Big Face, the shaman of the Mudokons beings, helps Abe gains the powers of the demigod. He returns to the RuptureFarms to rescue other slaves.
13. Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater
Skate your way in with the background of punk rock and ska music. Tony Hawk is a third-person with a fixed camera in a 3D environment game.
As a player, you will need to perform different tricks and collectibles to increase the score. For example, you can control different famous skateboarders, with each of them having eight grabs, eight slides, and eight flips of their own.
Tony Hawk’s Pro skater offers several game modes, including the career and multiplayer mode. In career mode, you get to choose a particular skateboarder and complete different missions. But, of course, you can skateboard without any mission as well.
On the other hand, in multiplayer mode using Bluetooth, you get a split-screen to play with your friends.
Enough with humans and demigods, now we have frogs at our hands. Collect all five colored(green, orange, purple, blue, and red) frogs to finish the game.
You start as a player with three lives, who must collect the frog within a limited time. Failure to do so will cause you to lose a life.
Along the journey, the player will come across different obstacles, traps, and enemies to be dodged for moving forward.
15. Gran Turismo 2
You guessed it right, the best PS1 game by sales number warrants a second entry. The second installment sees new cars, taking the total collection to 650 automobiles. On top of that, there are 27 tracks to rev around.
Just like the original Gran Turismo, we get two modes – Arcade and Simulation. Inside the Simulation mode, a player needs to earn a driver’s license, pay for the vehicles they use, and win races for earning trophies.
16. Dino Crisis
Horror genre will like this PS1 game. Dino Crisis is developed by the team which was behind Resident evil.
The plot starts with Secret Operation Raid Team (SORT) sending an agent Tom to investigate a death. A renowned world scientist who died under mysterious circumstances was reported dead three years ago.
SORT has four agents, Regina, Gail, Rick, and Cooper. You play Regina at the beginning of your journey. After landing on the mission location, one of the team members is killed by a wilderness predator.
17. Air Combat
Genre: Combat Flight simulation
Each of us has dreamt of being a pilot in our childhood. Watching an airplane fly high in the sky from your certainly helps you plan your ambitions.
Take it one step forward and become a part of the mercenary air force being assembled to stop the terrorists. You get one of the 16 fighter aircraft to fly. The fleet includes the likes of F-4 Phantom, Su-27 Flanker, and Lockheed F-117 Nighthawk.
Players need to complete each of the seventeen levels, filled with different objectives. Earn money to hire a wingman and additional gear for yourself. You can get extra cash by destroying “optional enemies” during the missions.
18. WWF War Zone
Genre: Combat Flight simulation
Another walk down the memory lane. WWF made wrestling into a gripping entertainment show.
Play with your favorite wrestler from the roster of 18 WWF stars. Don’t find your favorite wrestler? Create one using the create-a-player feature.
All the match modes of the time are available in the game, including cage and Battle royal. Start with the single mode and learn your way through.
19. Mortal Kombat Trilogy
Mortal Kombat Trilogy is a second update to the Mortal Kombat 3. Features similar gameplay, with added characters and stages taken from the earlier installments.
Trilogy has introduced an Aggressor bar, which fills when the players fight. Once full, it gives the combatant an increase in movement and attack damage for a shorter period.
This installment has added a “Brutality” finishing move, an eleven-button combo that knocks out the opponent.
20. Tetris Plus
And last on the list of the best PS1 games is Tetris, a classic, world-renowned game. You have played in one way or the way, on a device/platform that is obsolete now.
Moving on to the game, it has two modes – Classic and Puzzle. The former is a standard Tetris game, while the latter is more than that. Puzzle mode is a mission-based game with a limited time in which the player must clear a pre-arranged layout.
In the aesthetic department, we get four different themes inspired by real locations. The game starts with Egpyt and moves to Angkor Wat, Maya, and Knossos.
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21. Ape Escape
Viewed from the third-person perspective, we control a character, Spike. A boy is handed the momentous task of preventing the rewriting of history while pursuing and capturing apes.
We get two weapons at hand for capturing the mammals. The first one is a Stun Gun, which is for immobilizing enemies. And the second is the Time Net, for capturing the apes and then transporting them back in time.
The apes have helmets at their disposal for protection, which has a colored siren attached. It changes color based on their alert level.
Every time you take damage, you lose a life. Gather cookies around to replenish health. Also, look out for Specter coins; they will help in opening three bonus levels.
22. Chrono Cross
Chrono Cross is all about role-playing with a great story, with a diverse cast of 45 members. We start with Serge, the game’s protagonist, who is a teenage boy living in the fishing village of Ani.
His side-kick and assistant on the journey is Kid, a feisty and skilled thief. They navigate through the world on foot and occasionally on a boat.
Converse with locals to gather more information, items, and clues. The player must go between the two major parallel dimensions for recruiting new party members.
There is an unlockable game mode, the Game+, which unlocks 12 different endings to the game.
23. Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver
Enough with animals and warriors, now we talk about a ghostly vampire with face disfigurements. Raziel is everything you would want in a protagonist, fighting his way forward.
The fictional world of Nosgoth is on the brink of collapse, centuries after Kain leaves it to misery. A final boss and the antagonist, he leaves Raziel at the mouth of death, but fate had other plans for him.
The protagonist went through the chambers of the cathedral upon his return, only to find them turning into vile creatures.
24. Silent Hill
Let’s meet Harry Mason, a regular guy who is going about his life with his daughter. Then tragedy strikes, and the deserted town has turned into a monster apocalypse.
His daughter, Cheryl, is nowhere to be found. Now it’s up to him to find her before something unfortunate happens.
The game begins with a third-person view and carries on like that except for scenes with predetermined scenes. Harry has a firearm and a melee weapon to combat enemies as they arrive at every corner.
Along the journey, Harry meets several side characters who help him progress with the search for his daughter.
25. Vagrant Story
Genre: Action-role playing
We explore the mythical land of lea Monde and the catacombs running underneath. We follow Ashley Riot, in either first or third-person view, depending on our choice.
Ashley and her partner Callo arrive in the city after being away on the mission. The protagonist infiltrates it through the underground channels, leading into the wine cellar.
Callo is captured by Sydney, a partial antagonist with deep magical powers, which was witnessed at the Graylands incident.
While being captive, Callo learns of Haddin’s growing telepathy powers and larger plans involving a “key” known as the Blood-sin.
26. Wipeout 2097
Part of the Wipeout series, 2097 does not disappoint at all. Set four decades after its predecessor, we get to see the more aggressive, fast F5000 AG racing league.
We see new damage interfaces, weapons, and tracks. Like the first installment, players race against AI-powered opponents to win the race by finishing the race in the least time.
While racing in crafts, you get the chance to eliminate other drives by destroying their vehicles using weapons.
Each craft can take up a certain amount of damage which reflects in their quota bar. When it gets full, the vehicle blows up. The primary aim of the game is to finish with the highest possible performance and advance to the next level.
27. Twisted Metal 2
Taking car racing to another level, we have a game where destruction and demolition are essential to the main objective. We have different arenas for car battles.
As a player, you choose a vehicle and an arena to go all guns blazing. The weapons are scattered around on the ground for the player to use.
And the objective is simple, be the last to survive by destroying the enemy cars. There is also a cooperative mode where you can bring in a player through multi-player.
You must defeat all the enemies and the final boss to win the Twisted Metal tournament. The game takes around the several cities of Moscow, Paris, Amazonia, New York City, Antarctica, Holland, and Hong Kong for car battles.
28. Ace Combat 2
Genre: Air combat simulation
We go from surface to air with Ace Combat 2. The arcade-like game helps you get on the wins in a combat mode.
The game has a squadron of 24 different fighter jets, each having different missions to complete, with their distinct weaponry. Their objective primarily consists of destroying enemy squadrons or protecting the base from enemy fire.
Fourth mission onwards, we get a wingman to fly with us, which provides additional support. Be wary of the fuel meter, which should be kept in mind while flying, as it depletes fast while fighting enemies.
A new class of enemies, the elites, are introduced in this installment. Defeat them to unlock special medals and also a chance to fly their special aircraft.
29. Driver: You are the Wheelman
Genre: Driving, Action
A former racing driver and now an NYPD detective, John Tanner, is sent undercover on a mission. Investigate the crime syndicate led by Castaldi by infiltrating the group through his driving skills.
The game is set to spread in Miami, San Francisco, Los Angeles, and New York. Tanner goes to Miami and meets Rufus, a pimp with inner contacts to help break into the circuit.
Tanner rises through ranks and reputation by winning different races. The turning point of the story comes up when he rescues Jean-paul, an associate of Rufus.
30. Mega Man Legends 2
The game begins on the ruined islands, following the protagonist, Mega Man Volnutt. He is fighting against the Reaverbolts and exploring on the side through the ruins.
After events at a renowned conference, Mega Man and his partner Roll Casket decide to rescue Professor Barrell Caskett and his long-lost daughter Matilda.
They began their journey to the center of the island with the aim of finding the four keys essential to the mission. As they reach the Sulphur bottom with keys, Sera does something which dashes the hope of everyone.
Remember that Mega man must earn a Digger license on specific levels to gain access to different ruins.
How to Play PS1 Games on PC?
There are a bunch of emulators that can run PS1 games on PC without any hurdle. You can try Mednaffen, RetroArch, and several others for playing PS1 games.
Check out the entire list of the best PS1 Emulators for PC.
Which is the most sold PS1 game?
Gran Turismo is the most sold PS1 game of all time. Developed by Polyphony Digital is a Sim racing game.
It sold around 10.85 million units worldwide.
Over to You
Playstation One was released to compete with the consoles of other companies. However, it completely changed the console market forever and started a series of home consoles that dominate the market to this day.
To this day, the fans of the console look for the best PS1 games to play. You can check out the list compiled by us and, along the track, suggest the games which deserve to be here.