22 Japanese Import Classics on the PlayStation Network

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22 Japanese Import Classics on the PlayStation Network

One of the secret best features of the last generation of consoles was the removal of region locks. Sony’s consoles in particular boasted not only a total region-free approach, but plenty of games worth importing. With the advent of digital distribution, however, you can skip the wait and costs associated with shipping. By making a Japanese PlayStation Network account you can not only download PS4 and PS3 games, but digital versions of PS2 and PS1 games that would otherwise be region locked and require a region specific machine to play.

PlayStation Lifestyle has a 60 second rundownthat will help you get a Japanese PSN account in no time. From there you’ll need to add pre-paid credit to your account (I’m assuming you don’t have a Japanese credit card). I buy mine from Japan Codes, but other import stores will also sell them to you. Just make sure that they send you the codes directly and don’t ship the cards themselves to you. Keep in mind that you’ll also pay a bit more than the value amount you buy.

From here we’ll actually be using a web browser to navigate the store. It’s much faster than the notoriously slow PlayStation Network.

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Click the option above the left side of the search bar, then sign into your new Japanese PSN account. From there hover over your username, pick the third option down and redeem the code on the next screen.

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Using a web browser to browse the store has other benefits as well. By hovering over links you’ll get a URL preview that will end in a category ID, which will probably give you a much better idea of what you’re clicking. Seeing PS1ARCHIVESALL in a URL might not be an elegant way to parse a menu, but it’s easier than trying to parse a foreign alphabet.

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Even better, you can copy and paste the kana of a game title (from a Wikipedia article for example) and use it to search for a title, as you can almost guarantee that you won’t get results for the English title. For this list I’ll actually link to the store pages.

With that out of the way, let’s get to the games themselves. Please note that I’ve picked games that require little to no knowledge of Japanese to play, as well as titles that were either never localized or are unavailable on the US store.