The only way that you can truly enjoy your PlayStation 2 is to get the right games to play on it. When it comes to choosing the best PS2 games, you are spoiled with the sheer variety available on the market. There are a few PS2 exclusives along with iconic best sellers on offer – choose whatever you may!

Each of these games has different genres, along with different pros and cons that will heavily influence your decision. While, of course, as there is so much variety, there is no need to stick with only one game. However, you should still be aware of the PS2 games that are worth your money and ones that just aren't.

To help you narrow down your list, we have made a list of the top 10 PS2 games that you can try. Check it out by scrolling below!

Editors choice

1. SoulCalibur II

8.28 / 10
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Providing you with better graphics, gameplay, and some exceptionally great game models, SoulCalibur II is a fun fighting video game that has a loyal fan base – and it's easy to see why.

In comparison to the other fighting arcade games, the SoulCalibur series has always held its own. Instead of using fists and punches, this version mostly relies on different kinds of weapons. This is also its biggest plus point, as the clashing of these weapons makes for some amazing imagery. In fact, you have the opportunity to collect 200 different kinds of weapons as you climb up the ranks.

Complementing the fighting is the interesting storyline of each character that works to get you more invested in the game. We also like how every single character that you find in the game somehow fits in the situation quite remarkably well. You get the samurai Mitsurugi, pirate Cervantes, and the female ninja Taki to name of few. There are also new additions, who weren't there in the previous series.

You can experiment with guard impact moves along with the tried and tested combat system. The lateral movement is much more precise, which is indicative of the improvements in the counters and defense that were missing in the case of its predecessors. If you are able to create a balanced fighting experience that involves skill, this video game can be quite enjoyable for you—no need to be dependent on the hyper-aggressive button pressing for SoulCalibur II.

Key Features
  • 13 historic fighters
  • 7 exciting modes of play
  • Get 200 different kinds of weapon
  • Interesting storylines of every character
Specifications
  • Publisher: Bandai
  • Genre: Fighting
  • Mode: Single-player/Multiplayer
  • Platform: PlayStation 2
  • Rating: Teen
Pros
  • Fantastic fighter characters
  • Several game modes
  • Well-timed sound effects
Cons
  • Quite a challenging gameplay for some
  • You have to read the storyline
Premium pick

2. Silent Hill 2

9.23 / 10
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Silent Hill 2 involves small-town American mysteries that are paired with psychological horror in Japanese style. In fact, this video game has been universally established itself as one of the best PS2 games in the horror genre with millions vouching for its excellent gameplay.

We like how fast-paced the narrative is while coupling with survival horror plots. That atmosphere is successfully scary, while the game includes several endings that leave you questioning the occurrence of the events depicted. Did you imagine this? How did this happen? These are all questions that you'll end up asking yourself.

Once you start the game, you are placed in an extremely foggy town, which adds to the shroud of vagueness. The eerie and haunted town of Silent Hill comes filled with new enemies and terrifying weapons. Think of gore and visual expressions along with an equally creepy and frightening soundtrack that pushes the boundaries of horror. Your rival monsters include Pyramid Head along with other monstrosities who act as side characters.

Dealing with dark themes like spouse's death, sexual abuse, and incest, you're truly made to feel every emotion that the protagonist, James Sutherland, feels. This might prove to be unsettling, but the adventure of interrogating the sanity of your character really does stay with you even after the end credits roll. Silent Hill 2 is not for the unbrave - dark, frightening, and thrilling is what it embodies fearlessly. You realize exactly why it's hailed as a horror masterpiece.

Key Features
  • Survival horror with a gripping storyline
  • Poe-like atmosphere with a a cryptic letter from a dead wife
  • Offers 10 new formidable foes and plenty of puzzles
  • Haunting soundtrack with Dolby sound
Specifications
  • Publisher: Konami
  • Genre: Survival horror
  • Mode: Single-player
  • Platform: PlayStation 2
  • Rating: Mature
Pros
  • Fantastic graphic and soundplay
  • Well-integrated scenes
  • Great soundtrack that adds to the feel
Cons
  • Survival horror might not be for everyone

The Prince of Persia is a game that has seen its fair share of ups and downs. Many people had thought that the game had completely died, until Jordan Mechner, the franchise creator reinvigorated the game along with Unisoft Montrail.

The Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time makes a powerful impact with its detailed storytelling and real imagination creativity. You start with exploring Persia, which using the precise and sharp controls, is a good treat. Whether you jump from one wall to another or roll through the breeze – the controls, along with the 3-D effects, will leave you pleasantly surprised.

You get three action playability: navigation, combat, and puzzle-solving. These are easy to play while giving you the perfect platform to show your skills. We like how realistic the graphics were that looked extremely cool, just like the other aspects.

As mentioned before, the controls are highly responsive, making sure that there are no glitches for you to worry about. However, there might be times when the camera angle might not be that good, but it can be managed.

Even though the background score is supposed to have a Middle Eastern vibe along with some instrumentation, it sounds like whispers and is barely intelligible. This is one area where we think lots of improvement is required.

The average time to complete the Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time is 12 hours, making it a bit short, but the breathtaking environments and graphics ensure that you get rich gaming experience.

Key Features
  • Take charge and restore order to ancient Persia
  • Classic game redesigned in 3D
  • Exotic worlds and vast kingdoms uncover the world's mysteries
  • Several different powerful swords
Specifications
  • Publisher: Ubisoft
  • Genre: Fantasy adventure/Action
  • Mode: Single-player
  • Platform: PlayStation 2
  • Rating: Teen
Pros
  • Spectacular graphics
  • Improved fresh innovations
  • No glitches to worry of
Cons
  • Average fighting sequences
  • Gameplay leaves you wanting more

Grand Theft Auto: Vice City is an improved version of GTA III that features expansive themes and concepts that were original to the latter. Any minor glitches which caused issues are promptly fixed in the latest version that gives you a lot of new abilities and items to play around with. It's certainly extremely stylish and enjoyable that can make you spend hours playing.

It has a 3D third-person perspective with a compelling narrative alongside being a satire of an 80s-inspired crime world set up. There is also an extremely upbeat video game soundtrack that actually gets you in the mood for playing in the world of fast cars with lots of action and adventure.

As the protagonist, Tommy, you need to find out people who are cheating you, run your business, fight a turf war between Cubans and Haitians, demolish properties, take down a bank, and drive – a lot! It's the abundance of missions that will never bore you.

This video game has a mature and violent theme, but it's always balanced the crime world with some wacky humor and style. In addition to this, new player actions are always being unlocked to help you with your shooting and taking cover accuracy. If you are a sucker for story missions, there is a lot that you can indulge in with this PS2 video game. Some are simple, and some not so simple. So, get ready for a lot of commotion and gameplay content with Grand Theft Auto: Vice City.

Key Features
  • Bigger, badder, and better version of the iconic GTA series
  • Represents a classic '80s crime saga set-up
  • Lots of side quests and other missions
  • Improved graphics
Specifications
  • Publisher: Rockstar Games
  • Genre: Action
  • Mode: Single-player
  • Platform: PlayStation2
  • Rating: M
Pros
  • Makes for a fun timepass
  • Fun background music that adds to the feel
  • Easy to play
Cons
  • Some buyers received scratched discs

As soon as you start playing the Shadow of the Colossus, you might assume it to be a very simple and empty game. Based on area exploration, you are dropped right in the middle of an open world that doesn't have any living being. There are also no spoken dialogue or enemies – other than the 16 giants that you have been tasked to kill. Yet, once you start playing the game, you realize just how magnificent it is!

It has a puzzle-solving element that is paired with action. Your main aim here is to become the hero by slaying monsters all the while when you embark on an unforgettable experience. This PS2 video game has a beautiful melancholic setting that is combined with a simple story to give you clever puzzles and dynamic music. Its understated storytelling features a colassi that's badass and gigantic to up the thrill factor.

We found that the camera and controls tend to clash that can become annoying after one point of time. While the aim here is to make the graphics appear artistic, it can end up giving you a poor view, which will have you repositioning frequently.

All in all, even with limited elements, the Shadow of the Colossus manages to deliver an extraordinarily deep gaming experience. Every fight that you'll participate in will include a mystery – each one of which builds to the narrative. The perfect blend of art and action make this a must-try for all gamers.

Key Features
  • Picturesque landscapes and richly-detailed 16 Colossi
  • Fight each Colossi with skill using magical weapons
  • Exploration-based with lots of terrain challenges
Specifications
  • Publisher: Sony Computer Entertainment
  • Genre: Action-adventure‎, ‎Puzzle‎, Kaiju
  • Mode: ‎Single-player
  • Platform: PlayStation 2
  • Rating: Teen
Pros
  • Completely unique battles
  • Suitable for all ages
  • Brilliants twists in storyline
  • Picturesque landscapes
Cons
  • Clashing camera and controls
  • Graphics can be sharper

The Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater takes the PlayStation defining game series is a step forward, to say the least. Set in the 1960s era that is experiencing Cold War, you get Solid Snake's father Naked Eye, who true gamers will know is the Big Boss, as the protagonist.

You get the chance to experience the most action-packed performance with a vast jungle as the main set. You have to camouflage yourself to protect yourself from enemies, kill animals for food, and even treat your own wounds – it's basically survival in the wild that you do with the help of the accurate control. In addition to this, it's the hunt for getting medical supplies, which also adds to the thrill factor.

However, the best thing about this PS2 video game has to be the stealth gameplay. It's truly a class apart with an emotionally wrenching story that gives you more insight around the iconic boss fights.

You will love this prequel for its idealistic operation, which makes for a pretty fun game. Complementing the theme is a tactical espionage action where you play hide and seek and shoot through mountain ranges, tropical jungles, sewers, and mangrove swamps.

The background score is also quite invigorating and gets you in the mood for some survival action. Composed by Harry Gregson-Williams, it adds to the overall experience.

On the whole, the Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater is profoundly satisfying, intensely exciting, and will immerse you completely with what it has to offer.

Key Features
  • Camouflage yourself from hostile territory
  • Test your hunting skills and instincts
  • Manipulate interactive environments for your survival
  • Uncover the secret behind Metal Gear
Specifications
  • Publisher: Konami
  • Genre: Action-adventure/Stealth
  • Mode: Single-player
  • Platform: PlayStation 2
  • Rating: Mature
Pros
  • Fantastic background score
  • Good story with a neat ending
  • Complex and challenging gameplay
Cons
  • Can be too hard at times

SSX Tricky is equal parts fun and crazy. It's a snowboarding game that is actually a sequel due to which it has new tracks, rejigged improvements, and some really cool moves to play with. Our personal favorite was the "guillotine air," where your snowboard will spin around where the riders neck would be. It looks even better than it sounds!

Heads up: don't play the game with expectations of your gameplay to be realistic.

Instead, you should enjoy the sheer ludicrousness of it all. Adding to the technicolor drama is a Tokyo Megaplex track. You get lots of neon with garishly colored snow giving you ample opportunity to soar high into the air with accurate control. As soon as you start the game, you'll fall in love with the engaging and highly entertaining gameplay.

There are three peaks, each larger than life, that need to be conquered. You have no restrictions and can explore the mountain easily to uncover hundreds of collectibles, shortcuts, and secrets. You can also use the Uber tricks that come along with a new combo system.

The graphics are richly-detailed, which is expected as the team is led by an Oscar-nominated visual effects artist. You'll love the scenic beauty of the mountains along with heart-pounding natural disaster twists to keep you at the edge of your seat.

Completing the deal are 150 unique hidden challenges that will test your skill, speed, and style. Do you see how SSX Tricky is worth every cent you spend?

Key Features
  • Seamlessly board from one mountain to another
  • Enter competitions, Big Challenges, and discover hidden collectables
  • All-new rail parks, racecourses, and unbelievable half-pipes
  • Over 100 challenges to board
Specifications
  • Publisher: Electronic Arts
  • Genre: Snowboarding
  • Mode: Single-player‎/ Multiplayer
  • Platform: PlayStation 2
  • Rating: Everyone
Pros
  • Crazy fun gameplay
  • Cool snowboarding tricks
  • 100+ challenges
Cons
  • Disc can come scratched at times
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Not mentioning Resident Evil 4 on a list of the best PS2 games would have been a sin, and we certainly didn't want to unleash the wrath of gamers across the globe on us!

The protagonist, Leon S. Kennedy is on a mission to save the daughter of the US president from the clutches of a European cult. As you would expect from the series' lineage, it has some really fantastic heart-pounding fights with a solid script to support.

We have to warn you that there is not much enhancement that has been done to the graphics of this video game. It's certainly sharper, but in comparison to the video games of today's standards, it leaves much more to be wished for. The soundtrack is also only decent. However, if you've never played the previous versions of Resident Evil, these won't matter to you.

You can also hear the conversations and monologues in real-time, which is a huge plus. We really liked the "Aim and Shoot" targeting that made killing your enemies easier and more seamless.

This version has a special feature called "Separate Ways" missions. The star of these is Ada Wong, a Chinese secret agent who is just as badass as you would expect.

Putting things to a summary, the advanced AI make the game more intuitive and challenging. Whereas, the 'Action' button gives you better play control on the whole. You'll love what the Resident Evil 4 has to offer even though it doesn't feature any of the usual series zombies.

Key Features
  • Advanced AI makes the game even more challenging
  • Action button for better player control
  • New 'Aim and Shoot' targeting
  • Intuitive movement with behind the camera view
Specifications
  • Publisher: Capcom
  • Genre: Third-person shooter/Survival horror
  • Mode: Single-player
  • Platform: PlayStation 2
  • Rating: Mature
Pros
  • Impressive gameplay will leave you addicted
  • Amazing graphics
  • Genuinely scary moments
Cons
  • Quite challenging which might frustrate you

If you like playing the original Grand Theft Auto style series, the free-form exploration of the video game, Bully might appeal to you as well. It tries to create a delinquent experience filled with childish pranks and lots of punch throwing. Yet, it still has plenty of charm that adds to this teenage-angst rebellion.

You play Jimmy Hopkins, a teenage rebel who has to survive an entire year at Bullworth Academy that houses elite snobs and delinquents aplenty. Fed up with the power struggles going on among the five cliques of the school, Jimmy decides to show them who's the boss and wants to become their leader, and that's where all the action starts.

However, you shouldn't mistake Bully to be just about violence. You have to run errands, go for bike races, do vandalism, and complete missions – you know, the stereotypical things that a teen needs to do.

You encounter new areas that further unlock diverse missions that give you a huge variety of things to do. It's a typical high school experience that consists of houses, taking photographs, doing illegal graffiti, and making out with girls. Among all this, you have Jimmy's trusty skateboard to guide you through it all.

The minus point here has to be the soundtrack – it can get a little repetitive, which might make you push the mute button.

There are plenty of sub-plots to keep the game interesting, which is combined with realistic graphics. Hailing from the action-adventure genre, Bully is certainly a winner.

Key Features
  • Great humor and voices bring the characters to life
  • Schoolyard setting with original gameplay
  • Navigate the obstacles of the fictitious Bullworth Academy
  • Stand up for the nerds, geeks, and unrepresented
Specifications
  • Publisher: Rockstar Games
  • Genre: Action-adventure
  • Mode: Single-player/Multiplayer
  • Platform: PlayStation 2
  • Rating: Teen
Pros
  • Free-roaming style of gameplay
  • Fun and varied missions
  • Great humor and engaging characters
Cons
  • Repetitive soundtrack
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Burnout 3: Takedown is an extremely exciting game that has aggressive and dangerous driving, which serves as its absolute apex. Being as addictive as ever thanks to the traditional Crash Breakers and Takedowns, this PS2 video game embodies the very essence of how people view the legacy of Burnout.

Even after having been released years ago, Takedown still is the best selling and highest-scoring game of this iconic series for teenagers and adults alike, and it is easy to see why.

You get the traditional basic races, Grand Prix, and a garage full of fancy cars that need to be unlocked. The best way that you can get around crashing cars is by using "Boost," a supply of nitro that serves as the basis for this gameplay. The plan of action is easy: the more aggressively you play, the higher your chances of not running out on it.

You'll be racing into oncoming traffic, passing dangerously close by motorcycles, and basically flying through the air in your sports car. As these are dangerous actions, the thrill only amplifies as you know that one wrong move can send your transport crashing. Special mention for the crash animations that are sharp and pretty impressive, to say the least!

We also like the accurate controls, which is quite obviously an important factor in this arcade game. Nevertheless, Burnout 3: Takedown gives you the perfect combination of abundant races, modes, and lots of thrill to keep that adrenaline pumping.

Key Features
  • Drive different kinds of cars from 12 different classes
  • New racing conditions and environments
  • Awesome crash technology
  • Online action in seven different modes
  • Up to 6 participants
Specifications
  • Publisher: Electronic Arts
  • Genre: Racing
  • Mode: Single-player/Multiplayer
  • Platform: PlayStation 2
  • Rating: Teens
Pros
  • Spectacular crash animations
  • Accurate controls
  • Several modes and races
Cons
  • Repetitive announcements before every race

Nothing can be worse than playing on your PlayStation 2 only for it to stop operating – oh, the horror! Or, even taking out the station to find it unresponsive and just, dead.

This becomes even more frustrating when you have to spend hours trying to reach destinations and unlocking new levels. Now, you wouldn't want all your hard work to go in vain, do you? This is precisely why we have listed the most common ways to troubleshoot your beloved PS2.

When You See Disk Drive Errors

When you see the message "Disk Read Error," simply open your disk and clean the lens. But, when you see that the PS2 still doesn't start working even after cleaning the lens, there might be a high possibility of the entire laser been broken. In this case, you need to get it replaced. The worst-case scenario is getting the entire disk drive changed because there are chances where it might be faulty itself.

Also, don't use just any rag cloth for cleaning the lens. It should be soft to avoid having an abrasive effect on it.

You Find Your PlayStation 2 Becoming Way Too Hot

As we often spend hours on the gaming console, overheating is a common problem. The main reason behind this is when the cooling fan starts to get faulty. Generally, the fan is connected with a small plug inside the unit, which needs to be replaced to get the PlayStation working back to normal. Yes, it's that easy when it comes to solving overheating problems.

When the Spinning Dots On The Main Menu Don't Spin Anymore

The main reason behind this error is when your system clock becomes static, or when the orbs get static.

You see, the blue spinning dots are connected to the system clock, which makes them spin in motion with the system's time. Hence, it's only obvious that when the system loses track of time, the blue orbs will stop spinning as well. In such cases, you need to set the date to the current date to get it resolved.

The other reason behind the static blue orbs might be when your battery has drained. Simply replace this battery with a new one, and it will be back to normal. However, don't automatically assume that the battery might have drained. Always try the resetting of the date before replacing the battery.

We hope you like the items we recommend! Screen Rant has affiliate partnerships, so we receive a share of the revenue from your purchase. This won’t affect the price you pay and helps us offer the best product recommendations.

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