You may have seen them in the shops, PlayStation 2 games with a metallic border bearing the moniker "Platinum: The Best of PlayStation 2", but what are they all about?
Games that warrant a Platinum release are the cream of the crop, the very best games that have been published for PS2. They're often titles that are innovative in their design and feel, offer immersive gameplay, wowed game critics and received their fair share of accolades and awards. They're games that have sold over 400,000 copies and have been out for over six months
Now this may seem a little odd after mentioning obvious benchmarks like innovation and awards, but there is method in our madness. The ultimate test of a game's merits is how well it is received and that is where you come in. In effect the panel deciding what games go Platinum is you and your peers.
It is like karma for console owners; the games which are judged the best become available again for everyone. If you caught the wave first time, you help make the second.
So what is all the splashing about?
FORMULA ONE 05
Games with high levels of realism, especially the racing genre, are often branded as intimidating for novices, but FORMULA ONE 05 is surprisingly easy to pick up.
Easy on the eye, even at speeds of 200mph, FORMULA ONE 05 is a feast of visual splendour boasting superb levels of detail, from the cars themselves to the onlookers in the stands. The detail doesn't end with the game's pretty looks; all of the teams, drivers, cars and tracks from the 2005 season are featured.
Where FORMULA ONE O5 excels is in Career mode. You can create your own driver to race against the great names in the sport, moving from the back of the grid to pole position over the course of five seasons.
Online play rounds off the package, letting you pit your skills and nerve against a grid-full of other players.
God of War
God of War is a stunning, visceral action adventure inspired by the Greek myths. As Kratos, a mighty Spartan warrior pitted against the god of war Ares, you embark on a long and bloody crusade for vengeance against your former master.
Beautifully designed and written, with a good balance between puzzle and combat elements, God of War pits you against a range of classical foes and monsters such as minotaurs, centaurs, sirens and gorgons.
A critics darling, Santa Monica Studio's anti-hero, Kratos, won a phenomenal seven categories at the 2006 Interactive Achievement Awards, including Game of the Year
, Console Game of the Year
and Outstanding Achievement: Animation