A 22-Year-Long Mission to Scan Every PS2 Game Manual Just Finished

PS2 Game Manuals are Fully Archived

Remember the last time you finally got home after a long day of work/school/whatever, fresh new game in hand? Remember cracking that thing open on the couch, setting the whole game aside, and just diving into the physical manual? That was a long time ago – not quite as old as the PS2, but not far off. Back when each game would try their hardest to transform a basic set of instructions into a unique experience. They’d teach you about the game lore, they’d immerse you in the game’s general vibes, and build a ton of hype for the full experience.

playstation 2 feature

Physical manuals may be a thing of the past, but that doesn’t mean you can’t recreate it. A game-preservation diehard just finished a project that’s been over 20 years in the making. You can see the fruits of their labor here.

Each entry is a complete, high-quality scan of every single PS2 game manual. Every last one. Considering the depth of the PS2’s library, this was no small feat.

I consider this ‘functional preservation’ for now,” the man behind the project said in an interview with Kotaku. “Since I’ve popped the staples, I can always chuck them on a flatbed to properly preserve them. But then it goes back to my perfectionist nature. What is ‘good enough’? 2400 dpi at 48-bit color (over one gigabyte per page). At what point are we archiving ink instead of images? There is no easy answer.

In the future, I’d love to have an AI that can truly reconstruct the text and images as they were intended, correcting skew and properly descreening without blurring line art,” he said. “As it is, no one really wants a 600 dpi scan with staple holes and black edges, they just want the polished, finished project.