Sony is reiterating its intention to continue supporting PS4 for years to come, including offering intergenerational games (from third party studios at least) on PS4 and PS5. They expect the transition to the last three years… even if that means the games do not get the full benefit of PS5.
In the months leading up to the launch of PlayStation 5, Sony put a lot of emphasis on the concept of “generation leap”. Although PS5 is committed to being backward compatible with its predecessor (maintaining almost all games and most of its accessories and services), with each new console they want to mark a turning point, reinforcing the feeling of novelty.
However, Sony does not want to forget about PS4, even more so as it is one of its most successful consoles: more than 110 million consoles sold since 2013. And the main way to keep a console alive is with games.
In an interview, Hideaki Nishino, Senior Vice President of Sony Interactive Entertainment, reiterated the need to continue supporting PS4. even if it means that games, because they are intergenerational, do not get the most out of PS5 and its technology.
Referring to PS5’s SSD, which allows them to optimize development so that they can include many more elements in the game without load times, Nishino talked about how third-party studios, which make games for many devices at once, including PCs and mobile phones, are using this technology.
Although many developers are willing to develop with SSD (it’s easier and they have more possibilities), it seems that Sony is asking them not to forget about PS4. “In fact, it may not be easy to develop PS5-specific content from day one. For the moment, developing for PS4 is still necessary”.
“The current assumption is that the transition from PS4 to PS5 will take about three years. In the meantime, how can I continue to buy games on PS4? In addition to backward compatibility, being able to offer PS4 games on PS5, Nishino talked about the opposite, something like “forward compatibility”, i.e. offering the same PS5 games on PS4.
He concluded by saying that they are asking developers to develop on the premise of ‘cross-generation’ on PS4 and PS5. He did not specify whether he was referring to third party studios or his own studios, although those might have more flexibility to develop games exclusive to PS5.
Sony’s launch catalogue for PS5 only includes a first party game exclusive to PS5 (Demon’s Souls). Marvel’s Spider-Man Miles Morales and Sackboy Una Aventura a lo Grande can be played on PS4, although with great improvements on PS5.
Sony’s provisional catalog of games for 2021 includes Horizon Forbidden West (also on PS4), Ratchet & Clank Rift Apart (exclusive to PS5), and two other games that are expected to be released only on PS5 for the time being, but it has not been denied that they may be released on PS4: Gran Turismo 7 and God of War Ragnarok.
PS5 will be launched on November 19th in Europe, and we have already offered you our analysis.