Sony PlayStation 5 Will Allow Older PS4 Games To Be Played Without Any Authentication Or Verification Under Extensive Backward Compatibility?

Backward Compatibility has always been an issue with Sony PlayStation’s multiple generations. After ignoring the critical service for a couple of iterations, Sony appears to be taking a highly relaxed and gamer-centric approach with the upcoming high-end dedicated gaming console’s fifth iterations, the Sony PlayStation 5 or PS5.

According to a new report, Sony could allow complete backward compatibility with games designed to work on PlayStation 4. Interestingly, the approach will be so relaxed that PS4 game buyers won’t need any authorization from Sony to play their purchased PS4 games on PS5.

Sony Pushing Unconditional Backward Compatibility As Important Selling Feature On PS5?

Sony clearly ignored Backward Compatibility, an important feature that allows buyers to play their games that are meant to be played on previous generations of dedicated game consoles, on the newly acquired latest generation of the hardware. Backward Compatibility has been an issue with Sony PS4 and PS3. However, this appears to be changing fundamentally for the better with the upcoming Sony PlayStation 5.

An abruptly posted and quickly deleted Tweet offered some confirmation about Sony PS5’s liberal Backward Compatibility policy. The deleted Tweet reads:

There’s been some confusion about this in the past and I can clear it up now. The PlayStation 5 can run all PlayStation 4 games without per-game whitelisting. Sony continue[s] to test titles but the system will not prevent you from launching untested games.

The Tweet indicates Sony is completely altering its perception of Backward Compatibility, and instead of disabling access to games meant for older generations, the company will now offer unconditional access to PS4 games. There is always the case of incompatibility and unoptimized software that can cause problems and prevent games from working correctly on newer dedicated game consoles. However, Sony won’t officially block access to untested games?

Will All PS4 Games Work On The New Sony PlayStation5 (PS5) At Launch?

While Sony is reportedly testing Backward Compatibility with ever more PS4 games, there’s no certainty that all PS4 games will work well on PS5. Sony has been rather open about its intentions with Backward Compatibility on PS5 in the recent past. However, individual testing and optimization of PS4 games for PS5 consoles will take time. Sony has indicated that the majority of games meant for PS4 will work well with PS5, but the final list is still unclear.

The Tweet also mentioned there’s no “per-game whitelisting”.  This essentially could mean Sony won’t intentionally mandate a process of pre-approval of every PS4 game title. In other words, buyers would have the assurance that their PS4 games will be automatically be allowed to work on PS5. If true, this is a substantial improvement in the Backward Compatibility of PS5, which wasn’t seen in PS4 as well as PS3.

Sony has reportedly promised that at least 100 game titles that worked on PS4, would be completely compatible with PS5. In other words, PS5 would already have an extensive game library of more than 100 games at the time of its launch. It now appears the list will only grow bigger from there and that too in both the directions owing to the seemingly liberal approach to Backward Compatibility on PS5.

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Alap Naik Desai


A B.Tech Plastics (UDCT) and a Windows enthusiast. Optimizing the OS, exploring software, searching and deploying solutions to strange and weird issues is Alap's main interest.
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