Widescreen Games On The PlayStation

Joe from Game Sack recently released a video showcasing every single game on the original PlayStation that supports some kind of widescreen mode.  More importantly, Joe also goes into detail about which games actually benefit from it and which games feature modes that are mostly useless.  If you play PlayStation games on a widescreen display, this video is a must-watch!

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I have a few thoughts on this.  First, at the beginning of the video, Joe goes over how these widescreen modes work.  Basically, the same amount of detail is sent to a wider area, meaning 4:3 modes will always be “sharper” than the 16:9 modes of the same game.  I’ve personally tested this with PlayStation 2 and Dreamcast games, with mixed results;  Rayman on DC did look softer in 16:9, but overall I felt it was worth the tradeoff.  OutRun 2 for PS2 (at least to my eyes) seemed to look noticeably better in 4:3 mode though.

This is totally preference-based and I suggest trying both just to see.  If you’re using a RetroTINK 4K, it’s easy to just auto-crop either vertically or horizontally.  While I haven’t had time to test myself, I imagine adding a CRT filter might help reduce some of the softness.  Hopefully similar cropping can be added to the MiSTer core, to make the odd “14:9” games fill the screen properly.  I wish I’d kept notes while watching the video, as I think it’s worth adding how each game’s widescreen mode performs to the Wiki, along with any RT4K or MiSTer profiles/settings – This way people can have an easy reference for which games are worth trying and which are pretty useless.

Speaking of which, I really wonder why so many games had wide modes that were all messed up?  Like Joe said, maybe Sony sent out some bad info and developers just followed the instructions with no widescreen display to test it on?  I’d love to hear from a dev who worked on those games, but for now just enjoy the Game Sack video and feel free to speculate along with us!

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