PS4 Backwards Compatibility

While backwards compatibility has been available in some shape or form as far back as the Atari 7600, it wasn't a feature gamers expected to find on their consoles; it was a bonus when it appeared but hardly mandatory. The PlayStation 2 changed that by being fully compatible with the entire PlayStation library barring a handful of games. We saw this trend continue with the Wii and, to an extent, the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3, as enabling your system to be backwards compatible provided a large selection of games for your new console and encouraged developers to keep creating software for the previous hardware version. With the PlayStation 4, rumors swirled over whether or not Sony would provide backwards compatibility to past PlayStation consoles and now that the console is officially announced, we have our answer.

Disc-Based Compatibility
Sadly, Sony announced at the February 2013 unveiling of the PlayStation 4 that the console would not be compatible with any past PlayStation 1, 2 or 3 disc-based games. While this came as a shock, Sony does have a good reason for what some gamers are calling a huge mistake. The combination of the unique architecture of past PlayStation hardware releases, such as the Emotion Engine or the Cell Processor, and the fact that Sony is using “off the shelf” parts with the PlayStation 4 means that by default, the PlayStation 4 cannot play past PlayStation games properly. To natively play these games, Sony would have to add the older technology into the PlayStation 4, either compromising some of the features already present or raising the cost or the system. While gamers may lament the fact that backwards compatibility is not a part of the PlayStation 4, would you pay extra for it? Would you sacrifice some of the PlayStation 4 hardware in exchange for the ability to play past games?

The trade-off is for the best, as it's important for Sony to focus on the future rather than be shackled to the past. As you'll read later, this doesn't necessarily mean the PlayStation 4 may never be backwards compatible as Sony has a few tricks up its sleeve.

Downloadable Game and Content Compatibility
Disc-based games are only one part of the type of content the PlayStation 3 has received, with downloadable content, such as new levels, characters and stages and even full games being available for download via the PlayStation Store. However, none of this content will be available on the PlayStation 4 for the same reasons disc-based games are not compatible either. For many gamers, this has been a tougher pill to swallow. You'll always be able to play your disc-based PlayStation 3 games provided you have a working PS3, but what will happen to the digital content once Sony shuts off the servers? It costs money to host this content and it's not feasible to believe that Sony will host this content forever. Will these digital-only games be lost to the sands of time? Many of this content cost money as well, money that will most likely not be refunded should Sony remove the access to the games you paid for.

PS4 and PS3 Backwards CompatibilitySony has begun to address this issue since the launch of the PS4 by bringing certain digital games to the new platform. These titles include FlOw, Flower, Escape Plan, and Sound Shapes. In addition, many digital titles that have been released since the launch of the PS4 have been "cross-buy". This means that if you bought the game on the Vita or the PS3, you already own it on the PS4 and you can download the superior version without paying for it again. The same goes for the above mentioned titles and many other releases such as Tiny Brains, and SteamWorld Dig. As time goes on, we will most likely see more and more titles like these make the jump to PS4 with improvements and zero cost for those of us who already purchased them, or wish to play them on multiple Sony gaming systems.

The Upcoming release of PlayStation Now
As mentioned earlier, just because the PlayStation 4 doesn't ship with compatibility doesn't mean that it may never appear in the future. Sony has mentioned two routes they are looking into: emulation and streaming.

We've already seen PlayStation 2 games emulated on PlayStation 3 hardware, with games such as Bully and Grand Theft Auto III being released digitally for the system with other games like Metal Gear Solid 3 being released in disc form. With this approach, it's up to the developer and publisher to take the time to make their back catalog available for the PlayStation 4; while we'll see some games emulated, it will only be a fraction of the total library. Emulation may also present new glitches or bugs not present in the original release as well.

The option that Sony has confirmed to be going with is streaming, as mentioned at E3 2013. Confirmed at the beginning of this year, Sony announced a program called PlayStation Now. PlayStation Now is going to be a service available to PlayStation 4, PlayStation 3, Vita, Smart TV, Smartphone, and Tablet owners. The service acts a lot like Netflix, which pioneered home streaming for movies.

PS4 Backwards CompatibilityWith PlayStation Now, you'll be able to instantly access titles across the aforementioned devices simply by logging into your PSN account. All of your saves will go with your, regardless of what devices you play on. The content will come straight to you via Cloud technology so you won't need to wait for it to download. It will be like watching a movie, only you're in control! This is the product of the Gaikai streaming technology that Sony purchased last year, and it's looking to be a great alternative to traditional backwards compatibility.

The first game available to stream on the service will be Naughty Dog's smash hit of 2013, The Last of Us. Beyond: Two Souls has also been named. The catalog will feature PS3 hits to start from what has been announced and will first be available on PS3 and PS4, with support for Vita and other devices coming soon there after. Pricing and subscription models have not been detailed, but it has been said that two options will be available. One is a subscription with all access to the games, while the other would offer a more À la carte option of renting the games on a single purchase basis.

Regardless of how they handle it, this service shows that Sony is not willing to let the timeless experiences of PlayStation 3 to fade into the folds of time. With PlayStation Now, we will have the capacity to relive those experiences not only on our PS4, but on most other devices we own. That alone sounds like a good deal to me.

Article by - Joshua Phillips
Insert Date: 4/22/2013

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If only

As a gamer and avid sony fan, I will be severly angry if the PS4 is not backwards compatable at least on the ps3 games. I will not waste my money on anymore games on sonys behalf if I cannot play them on a next gen console. I want to be able to play my library without having to keep 4 different systems around. I still have my old ps1-ps2. and I will hang onto them unless they release a system that does it all. If they do that and drop it at 1000.00 dollars I would pay it. just for ease of use and less clutter. But if they take away the ability to play my games like skyrim and all of the DLC that I have purchased I will no longer buy sony products. also If my disc based games will become null and void I will be no longer a gamer. I like the idea of taking a game that I did not like and trading it in for something that I do like. If sony or microsoft think that it is a good idea, then im sorry but they are not listening to thier fans, and that is not a good position to be in. Rant over!

Only One Way

l will only buy a PS4 is it is compatible with PS3 games. l dont care about PS2 titles. l only play those in HD collections anyways. but yea so many titles l love on PS3 and l wont leave those behind. so if the PS4 lacks PS3 usage then l wont be buying one. as l imagine MOST wont if it lacks PS3 functionality

Backward Compatibility

PlayStation 4 will be backward compatible with PS1, PS2, and PS3. The only way it can be backward compatibility is through Gaikai's service and PlayStation Network. The PS1, PS2, and PS3 will be streamed to the PS4.The PlayStation 4 will use the "PlayStation Cloud" service to stream PS1, PS2, and PS3 games, solving the backward compatibility problem with technology developed by Gaikai. So problem solved for you people who wants to buy a PS4 without purchasing another PS3.

Unless each gamer has access

Unless each gamer has access to a T1 internet portal,"Playstation Cloud" will be hindered by compatibility issues experienced during the dial modem era.

Backwards Compatibility

So far, I haven't seen many PS3 games that have moved me. If the new console isn't backwards compatible to ps2 and ps1, it's a waste of my money as I have a large library of PS1 and 2 games I love and would not trade for their current crop.

Its just a computer

I find it hard to believe people are accepting hardware as an excuse. You can run all the same games, in the same format on a PC with the proper software...which is basically what these new systems are. I think the hardware issue is a lie by Sony to keep hackers from trying to break their shiny new toy.

The consoles have a specific OS.

Like computers (really, a gaming console IS a computer with hardware designed for only one task - gaming) game consoles have their own OS that it runs - like Microsoft's Windows, and Apples OS and iOS. Essentially you could install the console OS's on a PC and run the games... But there isn't much point, since the OS is fine already, and you may as well just buy the PC version of the game. Though the problem with the PS4 is that it really DOES use a different environment with it's cell processor - previous consoles used traditional PC-type hardware (essentially all gaming consoles excluding the PS3 are optimized PCs). That's why PS3 games (on disk) may not work on the PS4 without another Cell processor. Old games will be re-written for the PS4's architecture, and can be streamed to the PS4 according to the PS conference (likely by allowing PSN to scan your PS3 for save files). PS1 and PS2 games may actually work on the PS4 since it's in a similar environment, as weird as that is.


it is just a computer just diffrent operating system


it's a station. of playing. station. (with a different operating system) Mon, 04/08/2013 - 21:47 -- Anonymous

Backwards compatibility

I already keep my PS2 just for the reason my PS3 isn't BC. If PS4 isn't BC it doesn't matter how cheap it even is. It won't get a place in my livingroom. I still have a huge have to play collection that I won't throw away just like that.

Must have

If the PS4 has Backwards Compatibility, I will for sure buy it, because It would be two things packed into one, because I have never owned a ps3. And soon, a PS3 game I actually want is coming out, but I don't want to buy a PS3 just for that. But I saw that some PS4 games look interesting, and so if it plays PS3, I will buy it.


then they couldn't charge for it on their new mega cloud server.

Don't care too much.

My ps3 broke two years ago. I never brought another one because all I really played on it were fighting games and the few clearance games for it. Nothing is arguably wrong with it, but the idea for me was that i really only played to play with friends. PlayStation home and my constant use of it really reflected the idea of finding like minded people to play with and relate to. Even if the ps4 has terrible games it will still be a great blu-ray player, Netflix and internet substitute. It may even pay the difference for getting a smart tv, and it's promised to last for 10 years as a product. Which will be a technological statement. The added social content will make games feel like an mmo and bring people who enjoy the same games together. The sort of phone a friend aspect will truly make life a lot funner when it comes to concepts such as boss fights, or incredibly psychic bosses such as Seth from ssfIV, dark souls levels and all there is to come. Personally, this console will pay for itself if it's around 600. Especially if given a proper hdd and a plus subscription. Furthermore, the phone application will give everyone a chance to hunt for the one time only sales and limited promotions that the company usually entails, adding the right friends will give you easy access to it. And if ps4 still manages to be a lag tank like it's ancestor, get on your smartphone and still get it. If done properly, it's a secure statement to gamers who do not have the pockets or knowledge to keep up with technology to be able to enjoy supported games. It's usually why people buy apple... Or in this case. Sony.

PS4's Release Price + What I want to see (apples14 on the psn)

To all of you saying you won't buy the ps4 if it doesn't have BC. Yes you will, you will see the ps4 games and they will be amazing... Some PS4 games are also available on the ps3 such as ACIV Black Flag to name one, but eventually there will be only games just for the ps4. I'm pretty sure you won't be able to play every single ps4 game on the ps3. And I'm not even sure if all the upcoming ps4 games will be playable on the ps3, I just know that some are. Anyways, one day ps3 games will stop coming out, and then what are you going to do? Quit gaming, play old games forever, or buy a ps4 (or buy xbox 720 =0). I'm going to sell my ps3 and use that money toward the ps4. If there is no BC on the ps4 so be it, I can deal with that, perhaps others can't. I'm kinda worried about what the starting price will be. Remember ps3's release? It was $600 at first and then dropped fast. If I buy a ps4 at that price or a similar price and then it drops down soon after I would be so mad...So that brings up another question, is it worth buying right away and risking a price drop or wait for the drop and then pick it up? Here are some things I DEFINITELY want: - PS3 controllers can be used on the PS4 - I'll still want the PS4 controller but I'll use PS3 controllers for split screen. - Minecraft for ps3 please. - Make a Star wars battlefront 3 - Bring back Crash tag team racing, improved on every level - Bring Team buddies back from the ps1 - DLC for ps4 games will now be included on the game's disc, nothing makes me more mad than a game being released and having to pay for its' dlc on the day it comes out - Ability to create your own games on the ps4 and sell them - Start having an instant upload to youtube software on every game! - More split screen and co-op games, it also makes me mad when tons of games are 1 player only, what happened to sit-on-the couch gaming with friends That's it ^_^ pretty sure not all this will happen.

the reason the ps3 cost $600

the reason the ps3 cost $600 when it came out was because it had a blue ray player in it .and one the reasons for it delayed release.... and at the time to go just a blue ray player it self was over $700 so it was cheaper to buy the ps3 which came with a blue ray player built in. then it was buying a blue ray player.....


BLU RAY DISC...not blue And thank you for the history lesson. I feel enlightened!

PS4 won't play on PS3...

There will be games made for both platforms, but PS4 games won't play on PS3. There will be PS3 games made as well - look at NFS: Carbon and ProStreet - it had a PS2 and PS3 variant, and the PS3 version didn't work on the PS2. This is because one, the game will be to big to be played on the old hardware, and two, the architecture of the hardware is different.


"what happened to sit on the couch gaming with friends" bruv! im with you on that well put Thats the best!!

DLC is fine if it isn't on-disk.

I'm with you - developers like EA and CodeMasters have been launching games with day-one DLC, which is conent that is already in the game. That and online passes that activates certain content, so if you buy the game used, you can't have some of it. Basically, they charge an extra $10-20 for their games. I'm fine with all-new DLC being released later on, as long as it isn't content held back or what should've been from the start. Acceptable things being all-new maps, tracks, cars, guns, level caps, etc., depending on what the game is.


Would LOVE to see BC all the way back. would be GREAT!


I will not buy it unless is has Backwards Compatability for PS1 2 an 3.

Sony, don't be cheap

Put in whatever is required to play all previous playstation games. Do you really expect people are just going to stop playing old games just because new stuff comes out?!? Alot of the new stuff is unoriginal regurgitated crap!! And the only alternative you have is to "re-make" a very few select game titles in HD and then we have to rebuy them... I will definitely not make the mistake again of buying your new system if it does not support BC. Also, I hope you plan on putting a decent size HDD in the models..The space fills up so fast with downloading games on the PSN and also just loading disc games in general that preload onto the HDD. I think a 320GB HDD should be the bare minimum.

More than 320 GB...

500 GB-1 TB is satisfactory. You mentioned how fast space is taken on the PS3, but games will be even bigger on PS4. Considering what's possible in external drives and SD cards (about $100 for a 2TB drive and $60 for a 64 GB SD card about the size of your fingernail), I'd imagine the bare minimum to be around 1 TB. And yes, many people DO ditch their old games. BUT, I'd still like to be able to play them. Considering the stream service, I'm sure you could do a scan through PSN to find what games you had installed, at which time you could just download all of them for no charge. I don't know how this would work for PS1 and 2 games, though, unless it would work on the backwards compatible variants and could scan the save files...

backwards compatability

please dont bang on bout playing old games on new console never understood the idear of playing last gen games on next gen if you want to play ps3 games then just play them on your ps3 that bit longer simples dont waste your breath moaning bout how every new playstation cant play the last gen games hell i dont want it to play any ps3 games by the time ps4 is ready for launch my ps3 games will be sold along with console has been the case since i was a kid new im more than happy to pick up at least two launch titles from the get go not get it home and break out a ps3 game lol

Thank you for saying what

Thank you for saying what I've been thinking xP. It's true though it seems like there are no original ideas for games anymore. A prime example would be the Dynasty Warrior franchise, as much as I love the concept of it I'm tired of replaying the same game with updated graphics. It seems like people would rather pay for graphics rather than functionality. If it was Backwards Compatible I'm sure Sony would see a lot more fly off the shelves despite their high price tag. I know for a fact that I'm not getting one until a few years after it's been out and honestly with that huge flaw (No BC) I wouldn't recommend it to my family or friends.

I won't be buying it if it is

I won't be buying it if it is not BC with PS1, PS2 and PS3. I still have PS1 games and PS2 games that I like to play.

no one needs back wards com/pat

wake up the people wanting the lame backwards compatability that sucks big time dont want it whats the point?if you want to play last gen then dont get a ps4 its that simple play your ps3 that bit longer how dumb people want the ps4 just not the games lol iv played ps3 since 06 its time for change ps3 and games will be sold as every other console iv ever had before the launch dont care if i got hundred games and love them all the same next gen is next gen i want that experience thats what im paying for loyal fan since 95

Kind of do

I already have four systems, do you know how much of a pain it is to work around with four systems? If I want to play a game on an alternate system I have to turn my old tv all the way around, take out the cord, replace it with the system I want, turn it back, then I get to play it. More than that, old systems get old, they break down, get dusty, rust, etcetera. More than that there are really, really good games from past generations. No, I'm not going to sell my persona 4, disgaea, or metal gear solid just for the next generation. Those are good games, I'm a hundred percent sure that I will want to continue to play those games in the future. So why would I sell them?

lets say sony make it to a

lets say sony make it to a ps8 one day is every one still going to cry stamp there feet fist in the air i want it to play games from last seven consoles its a pointless and need less feature every loyal ps fan worth there salt will still get the ps4 makes me laugh sony spending god knows how much to develop the ps4 with new tech and features and some ppl want n old feature that sony duely got rid of after the original 60gig model

Backwards Compatiblity

I will only buy it if i can play ps3 games on it . I mean I dont want to have 4-5 consoles i want to have one . I would love it if the ps4 plays ps1-2 and 3 games .

Don't Mind Paying More.

I Don't Mind Paying A Little More. Only If It Is Going To Be Able To Play All My PS3 Games. If Not Screw It!!!

play all of the games

I think sony should give us the option to buy the games for ps1 like ff7 online along with all other games for all 4 computer but have a market place were people can trade there games with other people around the world then sony can take a cut of the price then sony could push the download games so for example I had god of war 1 put it on market for $5 you played $7 for it sony then gets $2 for the transfer I would do this. On a different not I think g.t.a 6 should use Google earth so you could download your own town that would be epic

There will be BC!

Sony teamed up with Gaiki. They will put BC on it but u have to ''download'' them! I possibly could give a crap about BC cause its just a waste of technology. But with Gaiki u can play PS3,2,and1 games with it.If u want to see more details about Gaiki supporting Sony about how it will work,then wait till E3 or another gaming expo. So stop crying in a corner like a little baby and get over it! Plus if Sony put BC in the PS4 then it would be overpriced than the PS3! U guys like want BC cause u want Sony to lose lots of money. Then u wonder why Sony is doing bad cause of u beggars! So stop begging at get used to having no built-in BC! So Gaiki will work on BC for u guys!

Backwards compatibility has nothing to do with price...

I don't see how backwards compatibility makes things more expensive... The PS2 was backwards compatible, and it was $300 at launch. The PS3 was expensive for it's blue ray drive and cell processor - nothing to do with the playback of old games. The reason the PS4 won't play the old games is because of it's architecture - they simply wouldn't work in the environment. The streaming would port the games coded for the the new architecture, and allow you to re-download them (maybe even your sav files through PSN) onto the PS4. That's how it would work. As for how you'd be able to get your old PS2 and PS1 games without re-purchasing them, that beats me. Sony didn't EVER lose money from backwards compatibility - I don't know where you get that from.

Backwards compatibility makes

Backwards compatibility makes things more expensive because it requires additional hardware to implement. To make the PS4 truly backwards compatible would require additional hardware to support the architecture of previous gaming system environments. And Sony would have to cover these additional hardware costs one of two ways: raise price of system or eat the losses.

Backwards compatibility

Just a thought, other than increased hard drive space, did the new ps3 cost more than the old ps3? and did it have less hardware? I remember it being backwards compatible when it dropped. They made the new ones not backwards compatible because they were losing money as people would buy the ps2 version of the same game and save $20 knowing that the ps3 would ramp up the game's graphics anyway.

Just Stupid

Its not crying like a baby when you've already spent thousands on games. That being said it doesn't seem like Sony really cares about our wallets when you have to buy the same games twice. So its not "crying" its just not wanting to be screwed..

Backwards Compatibility

It suck that ps4 wount be able to do it but it dousent matter Im and I will get me a ps4, I have all the playstations and a 360, wii, 64 them for the kids im PS 4 LIFE cant wait till it comes out (MGO5 & GTAV) 8D....

I already sold my PS3 + all

I already sold my PS3 + all my games(about 50) for 150£, dont care about Backwards Compatibility,new system means new games so i dont care about those what i want be able to play.

Traded in,

I went straight into my local game shop and traded everything in and pre-order my ps4 and new games total estimated bill (the store put holding prices until a price is released of $899 for console and $120 for most games, pssh not likely) $2500, how much did i get for trade ins? $1000 I also like to note that my ps3 took a fall off my shelve one day and hadn't worked for over a year.


smartest comment ive seen so far

Smartest comment you've seen???

I had to post this on here simply because it is too funny to pass up. This is the smartest comment you have seen on here? Really? Look very closely at the grammar, capitalization and punctuation. First of all, the plus sign should be replaced by the word plus, spelled out. Secondly, backwards compatibility does not need to be capitalized. Thirdly, the last part of the sentence is very confusing and difficult to understand. Finally, the sentence is one long run-on sentence. Just saying, that the comment you made right below it is pretty funny.


I thought I out ran my teachers.... lol


you're a.

Then obviously you didn't

Then obviously you didn't like ths PS3 or it's library. I keep my old games, hell I still have my old gameboy with Pokemon Red just because it's fun to play. If you want to sell your old system and the games that's fine, but I prefer to keep the games I like because I continue to like them regardless of age.

PS4!!! Im getting it regardless -TRUE gamer

ill just save my PS3 not worried bout BC im a TRUE gamer ill do what it takes what if i have to keep my older systems ... 2 tears in a bucket **** it lool


Your the type of gamer they milk money out of, that doesn't make you a "true gamer".


Why could they have a portable HDD PS3 ROM to connect to the PS4 that could play P1-P3 games for $100.

Games that a new console will not effect

Like most I do not want 2 or 3 consoles. Games like Rocksmith that are not about speed, loading time or graphics get little boost from a new console. I hate the idea that a game I bought at Chtistmas and the bass update I paid for in May could be left useless with the PS4. I can not see the New console being worth the effort or money if it makes a whole collection of high dollar PS3 games obsolete.

No way im out

I love ps3 and ps2 games i have no desire to buy a ps4 because this is something i can not accept. I hope to God my ps3 ever dies i can still buy another ps3 because to me unless they find a way to let me keep what i own both on disk and psn not worth it.