In a somewhat odd choice, Sony has revealed that the PlayStation Classic’s library will be partly based on the PAL versions of these games. Essentially, this means that several games on the PlayStation Classic will run slower than they did in the American releases.
PAL, or Phase Alternating Line, is a television standard used through most of Europe. For proper conversion, older video games would run at 50 hertz, necessitating that games that ran at 30 frames per second in an America would run at 25 frames per second in Europe. I suggest checking out a proper technical analysis, but long story short: this basically changes the way the game runs and results in things like different speeds for racing games and different timing for fighting games.
Sony confirmed the news in a blog post for the PlayStation Classic today. While it was assumed that European PlayStation Classics would retain their PAL versions, for some reason the North American version is following suit. The games based on the PAL releases are Battle Arena Toshinden, Cool Boarders 2, Destruction Derby, Grand Theft Auto, Jumping Flash, Oddworld: Abe’s Oddysee, Resident Evil: Director’s Cut, Tekken 3, and Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six.
In the case of games like, say, Tekken 3, this effectively changes the way the game is played for people who remember the North American versions. It is certainly an odd choice for Sony, which presumably comes down to ease of manufacturing or running the games.
In the blog post, Sony also quashes the rumor that the PlayStation Classic will ever be upgradeable with more games. “The PS Classic is preloaded with 20 of the best games from the original PlayStation,” the company writes. “It is not possible to purchase additional games for PlayStation Classic.”
The PlayStation Classic releases on December 3.