PS1, PS2 and PS3 Backwards Compatibility could still come to PS5, new patent suggests

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If you’re trying to decide between the Xbox Series X and PS5, and are weighing up the positives and negatives, there is one thing Microsoft’s console undoubtedly does better than Sony’s. And that’s Backwards Compatibility – whereas the Xbox Series X supports games all the way back to the original Xbox, the PS5 currently only offers support for PS4 games. And considering the wealth of absolute classics that came out on the PS1, PS2 and PS3 that’s a crying shame.
In the run-up to the Sony PS5’s launch rumours were circulating that the console’s Backwards Compatibility offering could support from the entire history of PlayStation.

So PS1, PS2, PS3 and even PSP and Vita games were rumoured to be compatible with the PS5.

That, sadly, has so far turned out to not be the case – but a new patent has given hope to PlayStation fans still hoping for better support for games from legacy consoles.

As reported by MP1st, a patent has been filed for handing out PlayStation Trophies to older games being emulated.

The patent was filed at the end of November and says: “A computer-implemented method assigns one or more trophies to a user. A game is emulated in response to a request from a client device. A trophy trigger is detected during emulation of the game by comparing a memory value of the emulated game to a predetermined value and assigning the one or more trophies to the user based on the detected trophy trigger”.

The patent says this could be used to award Trophies for games that were previously released which have no Trophy support, without modifying the software.

It’s important to point out that PS2 games released for the PS4 such as Vice City and Parappa the Rapper 2 don’t fall into this category as these are essentially fresh ports.

This patent is referring to older games – for instance PSP and PS1 games that currently are on the PlayStation Store.

The most tantalising prospect would be trophy support being added for actual, physical copies of PS1 or PS2 games that were inserted into a PS5.

But it remains to be seen whether Sony would go down this route or not.

PlayStation boss Jim Ryan previously poured cold water on the idea of the PS5 having Backwards Compatibility support for games as far back as the PS1.

Speaking in 2017 Ryan said: “When we’ve dabbled with Backwards Compatibility, I can say it is one of those features that is much requested, but not actually used much.

“That, and I was at a Gran Turismo event recently where they had PS1, PS2, PS3 and PS4 games, and the PS1 and the PS2 games, they looked ancient, like why would anybody play this?”

Nevertheless, it is curious that the recently discovered patent shows Sony have looked at adding new features to older games.

Companies often patent things that never come to market so this neat little idea may end up being something that never sees the light of day.

Which would be a huge shame given how transformative Backwards Compatibility would be for PS1 games.

If you’d like to see how much of an improvement PS1 games could get when running on a PS5 then check out this video from YouTuber RandomGaminginHD.

The clip is embedded into this article as well, and shows how much of an improvement PS1 games such as Driver can look running on modern hardware and in 4K.

And the results are staggering – with the jagged polygons those early 3D consoles are known for gone in favour of much crisper, clearer graphics.


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