The original PS2 dashboard is making a return to the PlayStation 4

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PS2 PS4 Dashboard (1)

It used to be that when you wanted to play a game, you’d flick your TV on, stick a cartridge in the slot, eject it, blow on it and then stick it back in for a quick session. These days, consoles do more than simply games. They’re hubs of activity, offering apps that allow you to tinker with videos between marketplace purchases.

And so, so much more. To get all of those features rolling out of the gate, you need a solid user interface. It’s a facet of the video game industry that few people pay attention to, and yet it’s monumentally important as it exists as a foundation upon which we access our games. If it wasn’t for the pioneering work done during the PlayStation 2, Xbox and GameCube days, we wouldn’t have such slick menus to navigate through.

The PS2 dashboard is still a work of art, a simplistic collection of menus which allowed players a host of options to navigate through and tweak their game output that little bit more. It’s also getting a revival, just in time for players to slap on some rose-tinted nostalgia goggles and wax lyrical about the good ol’ days. See for yourself below:

“After multiple prototypes over the last 2 years, each of which were designed to mimic functional aspects of the PS2 Dashboard, we have been given the opportunity to combine multiple disparate elements into a single piece of theme software which mimics the sights, sounds, and functionality of the Playstation 2 Dashboard. Upon starting up, users are treated fully recreated ‘boot’ sequence,” developer Truant Pixel wrote.

PlayStation 2 logo cannot be used due to licensing restrictions, (believe me, we tried; also, using the PlayStation 4 logo in the same style was considered but ultimately not approved) so we have taken an opportunity to create a mid-boot ‘Easter Egg,’ which changes randomly with every login. From there, the “Seven Stars” make an appearance, coalescing from random points to recreate the mathematical and dynamic formations to accompany the passage of time, similarly recreated from the original PlayStation 2 bios in the form of the Crystal Clock.

Colour shifting is now controlled via user input, with subtle shifts in particle speed and behaviour. Additionally, original audio has been taken from the PS2 hardware and recreated in the background ambience and custom keynotes for this theme. Lastly, as is our standard, this theme has been designed for 1080p, 4k/UHD, and OLED displays.

It’s rather sexy, as I’m such a sucker for minimalist design. All of that hard work will cost you, albeit not much. For the price of a decent coffee, you can grab the PS2 legacy theme dashboard from December 6 for $2.99.

Last Updated: December 4, 2017

Darryn Bonthuys

Word-slinger at Critical Hit. Inventor of the macho Swiss gym chocolate known as Testoblerone. That's...that's about it really.

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