In announcing the PlayStation 5, Sony revealed that the console is fully backward compatible with the PS4. This means you can play PlayStation 4 games on a PS5; you can even use some PS4 hardware with the PS5.
That said, there are hiccups with this backward compatibility. We’ve explored all the details below, including how to play PlayStation 4 games, which games might not work, and whether or not you can play older-generation games on the PS5 as well.
How Do You Play PS4 Games on the PS5?
Playing a PS4 game on the PS5 is simple. All you need to do is insert the game disc into your PS5 console or select the game you want to play from your games library in the PS Store.
It’s not possible to play physical PS4 games on the PlayStation 5 Digital Edition because it doesn’t have a disc drive. But you can play digitally purchased PS4 games on either console.
If you do plan to buy a PS5, make sure you know which version of the console to buy. Given the differences, a standard edition console with a disc drive might be better if you have physical games.
Make sure you sign in with your existing account to access all your PS Store purchases.
How Well Do PS4 Games Run on the PS5?
Almost every PS4 game should run on the PS5 with minimal problems. Some games may experience graphical errors or glitches, but those should become less frequent over time.
Most games actually perform better on the PlayStation 5 than they did on the PS4. You could experience superior frame rates, quicker loading times, and better resolution thanks to the advanced hardware in the PS5. Install digital games on the SSD in your PS5, rather than an external hard drive, for the best performance.
Even though the games are still playable, you can’t access PS4 Share, In-Game Live, or PS4 tournaments from the PS5.
There’s also a small selection of PS4 games that don’t work on the PS5 at all.
Which PS4 Games Don’t Work on the PS5?
Sony released a list of just 10 PS4 games that don’t work on the PS5. That’s pretty impressive considering there are another 4,000 or so PS4 games that do work.
Here are the PS4 games that we know don’t work on the PS5:
- Afro Samurai 2 Revenge of Kuma Volume One
- Hitman Go: Definitive Edition
- Joe’s Diner
- Just Deal With It!
- Robinson: The Journey
- Shadow Complex Remastered
- TT Isle of Man – Ride on the Edge 2
- We Sing
Do PS4 Accessories Work With the PS5?
The PS5’s backward compatibility extends to accessories as well as games—though not quite so seamlessly.
Most importantly, the wireless DualShock 4 PS4 controller does work with the PS5, but only when you’re playing PS4 games. You need to use the PlayStation 5 DualSense controller for PS5 games.
You can use PSVR with existing PS4 titles on the PS5, but you need to get a camera adapter to do so. On the upside, Sony is actually dishing these out for free if you already own a PS4 camera.
Visit Sony’s website to claim your free adapter.
You can also use PS Move controllers with the PS5, which is useful since you might need them for your PSVR games anyway.
Sadly, Sony doesn’t plan to include PSVR support for PS5 games, so don’t hold your breath waiting for new games to play with those accessories.
Can You Play PS1, PS2, or PS3 Games on the PS5?
Despite growing rumors leading up to the launch, it’s not possible to play PS1, PS2, or PS3 games on the PS5. The PS5’s backward compatibility ends with the PS4.
Still, there are other ways you can play older PlayStation games on the latest Sony console.
Many popular PS1, PS2, or PS3 games were re-released—sometimes even remastered—for the PlayStation 4. Since those reboots are now PS4 games, they do indeed work with the PS5.
For example, The Last of Us originally came out on the PS3 and this version doesn’t work on the PS5. But The Last of Us Remastered came out on the PS4, so that copy absolutely works on the PS5.
The same goes for PS1 and PS2 classics such as Max Payne, Jak and Daxter, the original GTA trilogy, and many more, all of which saw PS4 re-releases that now work on the PS5.
PS Now Lets You Play Even More Games on the PS5
PS Now is Sony’s cloud-based gaming service. It offers over 700 PS3 and PS4 games for you to stream or download and it works on the PS5.
If you’ve never used PS Now before, you can sign up for a free trial and get instant access to all those classic games. Or if you already subscribe to PS Now, just sign in to your account on a PS5 and pick up with your favorite PS3 or PS4 games right where you left off.