UPDATE: For full details on Playstation 2 compatibility, and which consoles support PS2 games, please see this PS3 model guide for details.
We’ve hinted at it in the past, that removing the Emotion Engine chip from the 80GB (and future) Playstation 3 consoles would ruin backwards compatibility with many Playstation 2 games. Without it, the console runs these games via a software emulator. You may not even care about this feature if you no longer play PS2 games, or kept your old console plugged in along with your new one. But one of the writers at Curmudgeon Gamer put his 90 game PS2 library to the test, playing each game on a 60GB and 80GB Playstation 3. The results weren’t pretty:
On the 60GB PS3, 84 of the 90 games worked perfectly fine, without any problems at all. 4 more had minor problems; 1 required a special controller that did not work with the PS3, and 1 suffered a show-stopping crash.
On the 80GB version, only 50 of the games worked perfectly (just 56.67% of his library). 12 of them crashed completely, 1 doesn’t work online, and there’s the one that required the special controller.
So if you care at all about playing your PS2 games and were planning on buying a PS3, you better run to the store now to pick up a 60GB version (as all remaining units are in stores now, and no more are being made). This is probably your last chance to buy a full-featured Playstation 3.