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PS5 Old-Gen Compatibility Confuses Ubisoft Into a U-Turn

Last Updated September 23, 2020 2:27 PM
Thomas Bardwell
Last Updated September 23, 2020 2:27 PM
  • Ubisoft support page published yesterday confirmed PS5 backward compatibility will only be available for PS4 games.
  • The statement has since been removed, reigniting discussion about the exact backward compatibility capabilities of the next-gen console.
  • Sony has not provided updates about backward compatibility for nearly six months despite promising regular news.

Ubisoft has retracted a statement from a support page on its website that seemingly confirmed PS5 backward compatibility would not extend beyond PS4 to games released for Sony’s previous trio of consoles.

The statement on a newly-minted support page offering details to players about the transition from PS4 titles to next-gen versions , unearthed yesterday and subsequently removed, appeared to confirm in no uncertain terms that Sony was drawing the line at PS4 games.

It read as follows:

“Backwards compatibility will be available for supported PlayStation 4 titles, but will not be possible for PlayStation 3, PlayStation 2, or PlayStation games.”

Ubisoft seemingly confirms PS5 BC will end with PS4 games. | Source: Twitter 

The retraction sows yet more confusion to a topic that Sony has skirted around with great care to date. The only official mention of the PS5’s backward compatibility capabilities dates back to Mark Cerny’s PS5 technical deep dive back in March.

No Updates From Sony About PS5 Backward Compatibility

During the presentation, and reiterated in an accompanying PlayStation blog post , Sony revealed that the ‘top 100 most-played PS4 titles’ would be playable on PS5 with more to follow as the gaming giant evaluates the suitability of the majority of more than 4,000 PS4 games on a case-by-case basis.

Senior VP of platform planning and management, Hideaki Nishino, noted at the time:

“We have already tested hundreds of titles and are preparing to test thousands more as we move toward launch. We will provide updates on backward compatibility, along with much more PS5 news, in the months ahead. Stay tuned!”

Near enough six months later, and Sony’s promise of updates has yet to materialize, leaving fans scratching their heads about whether they can potentially look forward to playing retro PlayStation titles on PS5.

Ubisoft’s statement appeared as the definitive answer to the lingering question, but the retraction raises more questions. Did Ubisoft let the news slip ahead of an announcement from Sony? Or possibly publish out of date information? Did the mega-publisher make an error, or was it referring only to its own expansive library of games?

With Sony’s heavy focus on a next-gen experience, PS5 backward compatibility will likely stop at PS4 games. Still, the company has yet to confirm as much outright, leaving hope that it will surprise fans, possibly during its next PS5 event, rumored for Sept. 9.