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PS2 FAQ

Machine: Sony PlayStation 2 (PS2 for short)
Price: $299.99
PS2 Controller - $34.99
PS2 Memory Card - $34.99
PS2 Multitap - $34.99
DVD Remote - $19.99

Release Date: Japan Ė March 4th, 2000
USA -- October 26th, 2000
Europe Ė TBA (November 24th?)
Australia Ė TBA (November 24th?)

System Specs: Clock speed Ė 294 MHz

CPU Ė 128-Bit Emotion Engine
Graphics: Graphics Synthesizer (can push up to 75 Million polygons/second)
Floating Point Power: 6.20 GigaFlops/second
Image & Video Decoder: MPEG 2
Memory Bus Size: 3.20 GigaFlops/second
Co-processor: FPU (Floating-Point Unit)
Console Memory: 32 MB Direct Rambus
Audio: SPU2+CPU
Number of Voices: 48 Channel
IOP: I/O Processor
CPU Core: 1st Generation PlayStation CPU
Media: Supports DVD, CD-ROM (both audio and games)

Accessories: Dual Shock2 controller
AV Multi Cable
AC Power Cord

Size: 301mm (With) x 182mm (Height) x 78mm (Depth) (12" x 7" x 3")

Weight: 2.4 kg (5 lbs. 5 oz.); can be placed in either a vertical or horizontal position

Interfaces: Controller port (2)
Memory Card slot (2)
AV Multi Out connector (1)
USB connector (2)
i.Link (IEEE1394) connector
Drive bay (for 3.5" hard disc drive)
Expansion unit (for network interface)


Frequently Asked Questions:

Q: Why is the PlayStation 2 even coming out? Iím perfectly happy with my original PSX

A: Well, basically because technology pushes forward. Sony is putting a lot of its marbles behind the PS2, having a ton of developer support and money being the pushing forces.

Q: Can I still play my older PlayStation titles? I donít want to forget the classicsÖ

A: Donít worry, the PS2 is backwards-compatible, meaning just about every game in existence should play fine on your PlayStation 2. Also, you can turn on a few hardware effects that might or might not enhance the way your individual game looks (some games receive better textures and are aliased, while others simply remain the same).

Q: Do my older accessories work as well? Like my controllers and memory cards.

A: Yup. Since Sonyís controllers for the PS2 are virtually identical to that of the PlayStation, your older controllers will work. As far as memory cards go, they will still be able to save games from your existing PSX titles, but will not work with the newer PS2 games.

Q: Can the system really get over 70 million polyís a second? Thatís unheard of!

A: Technically, yes. But if that were so, youíd be looking at some very boring games. After a full scene anti-aliasing turned on, real-time light, ray tracing, texture mapping and the works, a more realistic number would be between 10 Ė 18 million polys, depending really on how well a development team knows the PS2 hardware. To get an idea in your mind, think or Ridge Racer V, one of this fallís launch titles. On average itís pushing a little over 3 million triangles per second, so just consider how well a game will look quadrupling that number.

Q: Is it more powerful than even my new Sega Dreamcast?

A: Sure is. While itís not light years ahead (as Sony would like you to believe), the PS2 can still chug out a raw performance that most Dreamcast games couldnít even dream of accomplishing. While a lot of the early PS2 games donít look much better than the current crop of Dreamcast games, once the developers get more friendly with the hardware you will soon see a large difference in the visuals between the two consoles.

Q: How come it uses DVDs instead of the traditional CDs?

A: Simply because DVDs are better. While current CD-ROMS can only hold 650 MB of information, a Digital Video Disc can grasp a near whopping 4.8 Gigabytes (thatís over seven times as much as a single CD can hold!) Most developers arenít taking to DVDs quite yet, but once projects and ideas become larger, a DVD will be the only feasible choice for publishers.

Q: So if it plays DVD games, I assume that goes for DVD movies as well, correct?

A: Bingo. Sony has publicly stated that the PlayStation 2 will support DVD movies. The attraction of a game system and movie player in one will be a large part of Sonyís upcoming ad campaign.

Q: How about online play? Segaís got its Dreamcast network, and I wanna play network games too!

A: This is what may be Sonyís weakest part of the PS2. They are not so quick as to jump on the online gaming idea as Sega is. While it certainly doesnít mean they arenít thinking of it, Sony is holding out until more people are connected to the Ďnet via a broadband connection (DSL and cable, to name a few). Recently, though, Sony announced that there would be a narrowband modem to use this fall (meaning a 56k-flex dial up connection will be used, like the Dreamcastís). Notice that it wonít be packaged in with the PlayStation 2 itself, but rather will be on sale at retail stores.

Q: Okay, okay, Iím just about sold. But whatís the point of owning a machine without a strong library? There will be a healthy selection to chose from, right?

A: Mark my words, there will be many, many games to chose from. Sony has multiple games in development as we speak from about every publisher and developer under the sun. Square, Namco, Capcom, Konami, Acclaim, Lucas Arts, THQ, plus much more are signed on for create games. All in all, there are nearly 280 games (!) being made for the future right now, most of which should be arriving next year and the year 2002. If thereís anything the PS2 has enough of, itís games. Check out our Release List here.


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