The Year 2000. What is known as one of the greatest years in video game history. 20 years ago many big names were coming out in the arcades and home console and a major gaming system would release their second console. It’s what is to be known as the last hooray for the 5th generation as the 6th generation is slowly creeping around the corner. I find it very memorable since few of the games I grew up with came from the year 2000 and they have stuck around me since then, getting small reboots here and there, and having a slight farewell once 2001 arrive, and on this blog, we’re gonna take a look at the best years of 2000, in my retrospect of course.
When you think of the year 2000, one of the easiest moments to think about is the arrival of the Playstation 2. Sony’s second console, it was pretty much the prototype of what would be the norm of today. While the Dreamcast was able to experiment on online browsing and gaming, as well as portable interactive memory cards, the Playstation continued with their trend of making awesome gaming and the idea of online gaming and expanding it 10 times better. It was more powerful, meaning games like the Metal Gear Solid series and Final Fantasy series look more crisp and cinematic. It stores more data, giving games like the Grand Theft Auto series and Shadow of Colossal were more open world and holding stronger music. And it plays DVD’s, a gimmick that allows non-gamers to go with the cheaper route since DVD’s were becoming a hit sensation at the time. The PS2 didn’t have great releases at the time with the exception of SSX, Midnight Club, and TimeSplitters, but nothing major at all, but that didn’t stop people from purchasing a PS2 due to it’s gimmick. A year later with releases such as Devil May Cry, Metal Gear Solid 2, and Final Fantasy X, and soon the Sony Playstation 2 would rocket themselves into stratosphere of greatness, becoming one of the most iconic video game consoles of all time since the Nintendo Entertainment System.
Although the Playstation 2 had a rough start, the Dreamcast didn’t have it easy either as well. Released only a year later and hearing the news of Sony making an even more powerful console that would easily topple the beloved video game company once more since the release of the Sega Saturn and the first Sony Playstation, Sega really needed to prove that their console was the greatest and why fans should pay more attention to them rather than the upcoming PS2. Sega went all out with their releases. We’ve seen Sega Dreamcast release no more than 8 hit games. It’s not all the time we get a console that can release major hit games, especially if you are Nintendo at that time. Skies of Arcadia, Crazy Taxi, Space Channel 5, Resident Evil: Code Veronica, Jet Set Radio, Dead or Alive 2 even Marvel vs Freaken Capcom 2. When your console releases amazing games like this, you sure know you have a winner. Even Shenmue, a game that sadly couldn’t save Sega from financial obscurity, was widely regarded as one of the greatest games Sega has ever put out and one of Yu Suzuki’s greatest work. Hell, it even got fans to break the record for fastest $1 million pledge for a crowdfunded game in nearly 2 hours. That’s just how amazing Sega can be when they allow their creators to have the freedom to make games. Sure, Sega would fall under a year later due to a lack of interest and upgrades to keep up with the PS2, but just for one year we were stuffed with amazing games that would forever continue on in other 6th generation consoles and so on.
While the 6th generation is gearing up for an amazing era, the 5th generation is still in tact, still bringing out amazing games that we can enjoy until the next set of consoles arrive, unless you already own a Dreamcast.The Playstation brought out games such as Spiderman and Tony Hawk Pro Skater 2. Square Enix had the time of their year, release 4 RPG games on the same year (Vagrant Story, Chrono Cross, Parasite Eve II, and Final Fantasy IX), and Mega Man Legends 2 were release alongside with a spin off game cal The Misadventures of Tron Bonne. Nintendo on the other hand released Mario Party 2, which is widely regarded as the best in the series. Pokemon Stadium allows us to use our game files from Pokemon Red, Blue, and Yellow, and play time on the television screen without the need of a cable link in full color, although you do need to own your own game and cartridge as well. Perfect Dark, and The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask, which has given us creepy night terrors unlike anything we have seen in 2000.
Handheld games were treated nicely with Wario Land 3 and Bust-a-Move Millennium and computer games were a sneeze, releasing games such as The Sims, Diablo II, Command and Conquer: Red Alert 2, Deus Ex, and Counter Strike.
IGDA, the International Game Design Association, was formed, Microsoft would acquire Bungie which would bring us the Halo series, THQ would acquire Volition which would bring us the Saint’s Row series, and UbiSoft would acquire Red Storm Entertainment which would bring us the Rainbow Six Series.
The year 2000 was more of a love note from the 5th generation, thanking us for all the excitement that they have given us for the past 5 years and a hello note from the 6th generation that is coming to be. We gave time to look back at what we got from the three major companies as a year later one company would fall off the console wars and new one rises. It’s an event that we’ll never forget and one we ought to celebrate with joy and nostalgia to our hearts content.