At this year's pre-E3 Sony press conference, one of the highlights in terms of upcoming PSP projects was the possibility of downloadable PS1 games on the handheld. The only game shown at the time was the ancient Riiiidge Racer!, but the promise was there.
Well, in the latest issue of the UK-based PSP Magazine, the editors suggest several classic games will be available at the launch of the service. Whether wishful thinking or not, the list they've published includes such classics as Final Fantasy VII, Final Fantasy VIII, Silent Hill, Tomb Raider and Castlevania: Symphony of the Night. Quite a list, and the magazine goes so far as to say that Sony has actually confirmed these titles for the download service. There's also a claim thrown out that Sony plans on having over 7,000 PS1 games available for download on PSP by the end of 2007, and that there'll also be a new firmware upgrade for the PSP at the PS3's launch that will be required to play the emulated games.
Of course, all this is to be taken with a large chip covered with quite a few grains of salt. It's one thing to download Ridge Racer, a game that takes up about 20 megs of space. But Final Fantasy VIII is 2 Gigs - you'd need quite a memory stick for that one. And unless the emulation does absolutely all the work, it's hard to imagine developers being interested in putting the effort in on to bascially 'port' hundreds of old games. But we're sure to hear more on the topic towards the end of the year, so stay tuned!