PS5 will be not backwards compatible with PS3, PS2 and PS1, UbiSoft reveals (unintentionally)

In the first place, SIE's CEO is negative about backwards compatibility.

Engadget JP (Translation)
Engadget JP (Translation) , @Engadget_MT
2020年09月2日, 午後 06:13 in egmt

This article is based on an article from the Japanese edition of Engadget and was created using the translation tool Deepl.

Sony's PlayStation 5 and Microsoft's Xbox Series X are scheduled for release at the end of the year. The latter of these has revealed that it will be able to play four generations of games from the original Xbox to Xbox One from day one of their releases, but Sony has remained silent on backwards compatibility (i.e. the ability to run exclusive software from past hardware).

UbiSoft, known for the Assassin's Creed series, has reportedly mentioned, perhaps unintentionally, that the PS5 will not be backwards compatible with PS1 to PS3.

According to international tech media outlet BGR, a support page added to UbiSoft's official website states, “Backwards compatibility will be available for supported PlayStation 4 titles, but will not be possible for PlayStation 3, PlayStation 2, or PlayStation games.” At the time of writing, it has been changed to " from PlayStation 4 to PlayStation 5" and references to PS3 and earlier have disappeared, but MSPowerUser also reports that there was a similar description.

Incidentally, the page for Xbox Series X states that "Backwards compatibility will be available for supported Xbox One, Xbox 360, and Xbox titles," so it seems clear that the company is aware of the backwards compatibility of both consoles.

Sony first commented on the PS5's backward compatibility at a management policy briefing last May. Next, after announcing in a technical briefing for developers that nearly all of the top 100 most popular PS4 games would run on PS5, the company added that "eventually" the majority of the 4,000+ PS4 games will run on PS5. While the company was keen to promote PS5's exclusive titles, it made no comment on backwards compatibility with the pre-PS3 games.

SIE CEO Jim Ryan said of backwards compatibility in a negative light, “When we’ve dabbled with backwards compatibility, I can say it is one of those features that is much requested, but not actually used much,” and he said “That, and I was at a Gran Turismo event recently where they had PS1, PS2, PS3 and PS4 games, and the PS1 and the PS2 games, they looked ancient,” they may decide that being able to play with past titles that have sold out does not benefit their company and is unlikely to be a conduit to bring in new customers.

However, for the PS4, which was also not backwards compatible with the pre-PS3 version, PlayStation Now is now offering a subscription service that lets you play PS titles of all time. It will be interesting to see if this will carry over to the PS5, but even after PS Now has undergone a major price cut of less than half, it's being bolstered with a limited time offer of 30% off, so hopefully, Sony hasn't already lost the appeal of its past software assets.

Source: BGR

This article is based on an article from the Japanese edition of Engadget and was created using the translation tool Deepl. The Japanese edition of Engadget does not guarantee the accuracy or reliability of this article.

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