One of the many questions that everybody in the gaming community had regarding the PlayStation 5 was how Sony would handle backwards compatibility. The company has briefly mentioned that there would be backwards compatibility functionality during the Road to PS5 event in March. And, many were wondering if the recently announced PlayStation Plus Collection was their answer. They haven’t revealed any concrete details until now. Over on the PlayStation Blog, Sony has provided details on backward compatibility, how Game Boost enhances select PS4 titles, and more. They say that “when the PlayStation 5 launches this November, more than 99 percent of the 4000+ games available on PS4 will be playable on PS5.”
More than 99% of PS4 games being playable on PlayStation 5 means that everything from the titles that defined the PS4 generation such as The Last of Us Part II and Ghost of Tsushima, to blockbuster hits from third-party developers will be playable. This extends to PlayStation VR games as well as PS4 games that will be on PS Now and PS Plus. Remote play from PlayStation 4 to PlayStation 5 and PS Now streaming is also supported. However, PS4 games will not leverage PS5 Game Boost through streaming.
With two skews, playing PS4 games on the PlayStation is only different in the way you access the game. If you have the PS5 Digital Edition, you will be able to play digital versions of your compatible PS4 games on the console. These are the digital games you have already purchased or plan to purchase, via PlayStation Store on PS4, PS5, web, or PlayStation mobile app. With the Digital Edition, you cannot play disc-based games since there is no disc drive. If you have the PlayStation 5 with Ultra HD Blu-ray disc drive, you will also be able to play the digital versions of compatible PS4 games, but you can also use physical PS4 game discs. If players originally purchase a PS4 game disc, the PlayStation 5 with Ultra HD Blu-ray disc drive is required to upgrade to the PlayStation 5 version of the game and transfer the saves over.
Certain PlayStation 4 titles will see increased loading speeds on the PS5 and will leverage Game Boost, which offers improved or more stable frame rates. Some titles with unlocked frame rates or dynamic resolution up to 4k may see higher fidelity.
Transfers between the PlayStation 4 to a PS5 can be done using LAN cables, or with WiFi. You can bring over any PS4 games stored with an external USB storage device directly to the PlayStation 5. PS Plus members will also be able to sync PS4 game saves on PS5 through cloud storage. The ability to transfer saves between a PS4 version and a PS5 version of a game is a developer decision and will vary title by title.