Sony unsure if PS5 backwards compatibility will cover every game

Backwards compatibility wasn’t mentioned during yesterday’s PlayStation 5 news, but Sony has confirmed they’re still working on it.

It’s going to be a slow drip feed of information on the PlayStation 5, probably lasting several months, and so there was plenty of things Sony didn’t talk about yesterday, even as they confirmed the name and rough release date, and some hardware details.

What they didn’t discuss was backwards compatibility, even though Sony has confirmed it will be a major part of the new console – in large part because of how Microsoft has promoted the feature on Xbox One.

But Japanese magazine Famitsu was able to get a statement out of Sony about the issue which, as translated by BlackKite on Twitter, reads: ‘Currently, the dev team is putting all power on verifying whether they can secure a complete compatibility. Please wait for more information’.

Even given the vagaries of translation there’s a few different ways you could read that statement: do they mean complete compatibility with just the PlayStation 4 or are they talking about earlier consoles as well?

A series of patents have suggested that Sony are not only planning to make sure older games run on the PlayStation 5 but that they will look and play better than ever before, thanks to a process described as ‘remastering by emulation’.

The patents don’t make it clear exactly which formats this would cover but it does seem as if Sony is trying to mimic Microsoft’s approach of upscaling older games and improving their performance on newer hardware.

It’s very likely that Sony will focus specifically on backwards compatibility in a future news update, at which point we should learn the full scope of their plans.

That’ll hopefully also make it clear what will happen to major titles, like The Last Of Us Part II and Ghost Of Tsushima, that are being released just months before the launch of the PlayStation 5 and which Sony will certainly want to get onto the new console in some form.

 

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