Indie Dev: Disappointed PS5 Isn't Backwards Compatible With Legacy Consoles, But Current Games Matter Most

Indie Dev: Disappointed PS5 Isn't Backwards Compatible With Legacy Consoles, But Current Games Matter Most - News

by William D'Angelo , posted 5 days ago / 2,708 Views

Indie studio Perfectly Paranormal's creative lead Ozan Drøsdal speaking with GamingBolt in a recent interview discussed the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X. 

Drøsdal is disappointed the PlayStation 5 is only backwards compatible with games on the PlayStation 4 and not for games on legacy PlayStation consoles, like the PS3, PS2 and PS1. The Xbox Series X will be backwards compatible with most games on the Xbox One and all the current Xbox 360 and original Xbox games that run on the Xbox One.

"It is a little disappointing to hear that we still can’t use our PS2 libraries without dusting off the ol’ PS2," said Drøsdal. “It is exciting to hear that we can use the original Xbox games on the Series X.

He did add that in the end it is the current generation of games that sells consoles and not games from previous generations.

"But I reckon which console to choose will always boil down to the current gen of games anyway," he added. "Or you can always get both if you save up like crazy!"

Perfectly Paranormal upcoming game, Helheim Hassle, is currently in development for the the Nintendo Switch, Xbox One and Windows PC. 


A life-long and avid gamer, William D'Angelo was first introduced to VGChartz in 2007. After years of supporting the site, he was brought on in 2010 as a junior analyst, working his way up to lead analyst in 2012. He has expanded his involvement in the gaming community by producing content on his own YouTube channel and Twitch channel dedicated to gaming Let's Plays and tutorials. You can contact the author at wdangelo@vgchartz.com or on Twitter @TrunksWD.


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47 Comments

LivingMetal (on 24 March 2020)

"Backwards Compatibility" is another choice, and it's a nice choice. But in reality, it's more of a "security blanket" for some, fanboy fodder for others.


Mr Puggsly (on 24 March 2020)

In the grand scheme its not crucial. But if millions will use it and it gives them the ability to sell old games, its arguably worth doing.

Sony already has PS1 and PS2 emulators. They could simply port that.

Meanwhile great PS3 and PSP emulators now exist on PC. Sony can create emulators as well.


  • 0
Jranation (on 24 March 2020)

BC is good if you want to sell your consoles so you can afford the new one


  • +1
DialgaMarine (on 25 March 2020)

BC is nice, but the lack of it clearly hasn't hurt the Switch and PS4


  • +1
Zenos (on 24 March 2020)

He's correct. Backwards compatibility is a great feature and it's very consumer friendly, but I don't think it sells consoles at a huge rate.


DialgaMarine (on 25 March 2020)

Not really. It's a convenience feature at best. Very few people go to the store to buy new hardware if they want to play old software, especially if the old hardware is much cheaper/ they already own it.


  • -1
Evilms (on 24 March 2020)

If I buy a new console for $500 it's not to play old games but for next gen games, otherwise I might as well stay with the old consoles. Backwards compatibility is cool, but it's far from being a priority for me.


nantonaku (on 24 March 2020)

I agree.Certainly backwards compatibility looks appealing when considering a purchase, but I've rarely used it.


  • +5
Mr Puggsly (on 24 March 2020)

True, but why are countless old games ported to new consoles? Clearly people are playing this content.

I just bought and played some FFVII today on my X1X.


  • 0
Mr Puggsly (on 24 March 2020)

Oh, I also bought Doom 64. Its only 5 bucks, played a little of that as well. Then I bought Just Cause 1 (360 BC) because it was 99 cents. I am part of the problem why old games keep coming to new consoles.


  • +1
Jranation (on 24 March 2020)

BC is good if you want to sell your consoles so you can afford the new one


  • +1
JRPGfan (on 24 March 2020)

I agree, why cant they allow them to emulate the PS2? or PS3? the cpu is powerfull enough.


Mr Puggsly (on 24 March 2020)

Right, its not an impossible endeavor. They could get dedicate a small team to work on the emulators and test games. In return Sony could make money from selling old games.


  • +1
Imaginedvl (on 24 March 2020)

I believe I played like 1 or 2 backward compatible game so far on my Xbox One :) I really believe this is not a big deal. This is a cool thing to have and more is always better but for my personal experience it does not really matter.


alexxonne (on 24 March 2020)

Sony should opt for a BC add-on (with PS3+PS2 chips), using an external communication slot, like old gaming systems did generations ago. Say you want the BC add-on then you pay $100-150 for it, so only users that want BC will be the ones paying for it. Or perhaps the inclusion of a Pro console, with the chips built-in and better specs supporting full BC.


DonFerrari (on 24 March 2020)

Don't know it would well accepted, but yes perhaps with USB 3.0 or the SDD slot they could sell some add-on, but 150 would be considered too expensive (unless it came with several games included).


  • +1
EricHiggin (on 24 March 2020)

I like the idea in general. As for price, heck even $200 doesn't seem crazy. How much get's spent by customers on Remastered games? Just $200 and 99% of all PS games ever will play on the new console? It would work, but you would still have more than enough who couldn't afford it and would complain. If it's that important, and requires a cost, well. Better than nothing though I would think? Maybe separate BC 'cards'? PS1, PS2, PS3. $50 each? Pay for what you want to play?


  • +1
DonFerrari (on 25 March 2020)

The problem would be you asking 200 for something that the competitor do for free, so suddenly you give value to the competitor.
The PR impact of not having BC is lesser than charging 200 for it. Because you still need to buy those games and would make money. If Sony can make the emulator that improve the game just putting the catalog on the PSN would pay for the effort. If you need to include some hardware charge it 50-100 (like the difference between the cost among it and XSX) and give some games with it.


  • 0
EricHiggin (on 25 March 2020)

If the BC edition or cards were to exist, they would need to be full BC or like 99%, without any issues. The competition isn't providing that. You want half baked BC? Then go with the competition for free. You want full uncompromised BC? Then pay a little more for it.


  • 0
DonFerrari (on 25 March 2020)

That won`t be impressive if all the relevant games are on the BC for free on the competitor, you can`t really promote "pay 100USD to play the shovelware here instead of playing the halmarks for free on the competitor".
I bet you that MS would be able to milk much more a pricy BC on Sony than the lack of it.


  • 0
DonFerrari (on 25 March 2020)

Because if MS delivers the promises of the enhancements when you play on Series X then it isn`t any half baked BC.


  • 0
EricHiggin (on 25 March 2020)

Not for this gen, but what about 360 and XBOX?


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DonFerrari (on 25 March 2020)

From what I know all the relevant games from those 2 systems will be BC on XSX and it will receive boost in fps, res and others and MS isn`t charging extra for it. So offering more titles that are niche or sold poorly and charging 100 extra would be bad PR.


  • 0
EricHiggin (on 25 March 2020)

So SNY then makes a point of that, how MS doesn't cover everything, and then they offer 99% of PS1, PS2, and PS3 games, and you pay $50 per card or whatever to be able to play them all. If you only want PS2 games maybe, you only pay $50. This way PS can say not only are we offering full BC, and options, but WAY, MORE, GAMES. That's PS bread and butter right there. Again, that won't satisfy everyone, but it will satisfy quite a few and will check more comparison boxes.


  • 0
DonFerrari (on 25 March 2020)

50 bucks sure, even more if PS5 is 100 cheaper than XSX. But you were talking about charging 200.
If the chip also allow for improved version of those BC games then that is win all around.


  • 0
EricHiggin (on 25 March 2020)

By $200 (max), I more so meant a PS5 full BC edition, on top of the base PS5. The BC edition would definitely enhance games, and maybe have a little more performance to help with that. The $50 add on cards, may or may not have enhancements. Even if it was BC without enhancements, it would be worth it. Most people would get over it. SNY would almost certainly continue to Remaster old games that the hardcore could buy to play enhanced versions.


  • 0
DonFerrari (on 25 March 2020)

A 650 PS5 with BC but with almost the same base spec would be laughing stock on the market.


  • 0
EricHiggin (on 25 March 2020)

How much would it cost to buy a PS1, PS2, PS3, PS4, and PS5? I guess you could just buy a PS3, PS4, and PS5, and not get the true full experience, but for the all in one packaged convenience of PS5 BC Edition, it wouldn't be crazy. Maybe the cards are a better idea then. Just idea's for those in need. Everything has a price.


  • 0
DonFerrari (on 25 March 2020)

PS1 and PS2 BC you can have even on 50 bucks third party shitty systems, PS4 is already on PS5.

Sony increase sales by a shit ton when they removed BC and cut price on PS3. Nowhere it would be worth extra 200 for general market. If they had to pay 650 for the console to have BC they would go PC have BC to the 80s, emulator for PS, Xbox and Nintendo exclusives and still play current gen games with better performance than PS5.

And on the other hand they could buy XSX let`s say for 500-550 with more power than PS5, a very robust BC for all gens.

It would be just very bad PR for Sony and could even jeopardize the sales of the regular 450 PS5.


  • 0
EricHiggin (on 25 March 2020)

What about XB games being on PC though? If you can get all your XB games on PC, then where's the console hardware advantage, other than raw performance?


  • 0
DonFerrari (on 26 March 2020)

What about Xbox? It will still launch more capable than PS5 and with BC, the way for PS5 to compete is being cheaper and having better exclusives. That is why making a 200 more expensive version would look bad. Some people still like consoles even if PC is more capable (still making a comparable to PS5 PC for 450 or XSX for 550 is hard, but comparable to PS4 by 650 would be easier).
I don`t see a scenario where a BC version costing 200 more would be benefitial to Sony because then it would be at least 100 more in price than XSX, with worse spec just to offer the niche BC games as advantage (since the main games are already available on XSX BC).
Don`t forget that BC in itself have very little console selling power, to try and charge 200 on that would certainly backfire.


  • 0
EricHiggin (on 26 March 2020)

If XB games are on PC, then XBSX is already at a disadvantage. If we end up with a $299 Lockhart, $399 PS5, and $499 XBSX, then a $599 PS5 BC shouldn't be a problem. You could even increase all prices by $100 and PS5 BC would just be $100 more than XBSX for full uncompromised BC. For those who want a PS console, with full BC, that would be an option. While I don't think it's sales would be huge, it's the fact that the option would exist, like XBSX vs Lockhart. Want way more performance with partial BC? Buy XBSX. Want some extra performance, with full BC? Buy PS5 BCE.


  • 0
Signalstar (on 24 March 2020)

I can play PS2 games on my launch model PS3. No need to dust off my PS2.


bartkuz (on 25 March 2020)

How long until it stops working? Those launch PS3's tend to break easily.


  • -1
DonFerrari (on 25 March 2020)

Yes so easily to break that he is using it over 10 years after launch.


  • +1
Pajderman (on 25 March 2020)

I jump between games from a lot of different generations. Backwards Compatibility make it possible for me to not have as many consoles connected to the TV at once.


mushroomboy5 (on 25 March 2020)

It'd be a nice feature for the one or two older ps3 games I wouldn't mind replaying. But I think I'll live.


Moonhero (on 24 March 2020)

PS5 will have the right price, and due to the previous console's install base, it will take a commanding lead.


HollyGamer (on 24 March 2020)

So he is not developing games for PS system but commenting and bad mouthing it??? LOL


VAMatt (on 24 March 2020)

I don't see where he's badmouthing it. He clearly implied that he's a PS player.


  • 0
DonFerrari (on 24 March 2020)

Didn't see any badmouth.
He say he knows current gen is much more important but that he would like to also have older games but understand why that wasn't made.


  • +1
DonFerrari (on 24 March 2020)

Although unfortunate that information haven't been confirmed (but almost sure it won't have) there is PSNow, Classics, Remasters and other ways that a good amount of previous gen games have been made available from PS4 onwards. But yes even though most consumers don't care or bring profit to the platform it is sad that BC for all gens isn't available.


Mr Puggsly (on 24 March 2020)

The way MS has handled BC is likely profitable. It has even boosted the number OG Xbox and 360 games found in their digital store.


  • +1
DonFerrari (on 24 March 2020)

I imagine it is, but perhaps less than the way Sony is doing? We don't know, probably both companies done their projection and reached different results so one was driven to give "free BC" and have people rebuy the titles since most wouldn't have the original and sony gone with remasters and classics.


  • -1
Mr Puggsly (on 24 March 2020)

PS1 and PS2 emulators don't matter as much as a great PS3 emulator in my opinion. Black Ops 2 still a popular game on 360/BC.


Azzanation (on 24 March 2020)

Current generation games are obviously needed however without BC, companies nickle and dime their customers in repurchasing there games just to play them on another console. He probably likes the sound of that better because future $$$.


LivingMetal (on 24 March 2020)

Buying a console for backwards compatibility is a CHOICE. Finding copies of previous generation titles to play on a backwards compatible console is also a CHOICE. Buying a remaster is a CHOICE as well. No one is making you.


  • +8