Many PlayStation 3 owners considering an upgrade to the PlayStation 4 are concerned that their game collection won’t work on the newer system. The solution is, alas, not so straightforward.
This article provides a comprehensive guide on playing PS3 games on a PS4, covering every aspect of the process.
Compatible Older Games on Newer Consoles
Backwards compatibility is a feature of any respectable gaming system. To demonstrate respect for the history of video games, every manufacturer who adds backwards compatibility to their console should make the effort to do so.
Microsoft is a solid example; the Xbox Series X/S can run the great majority of Xbox 360 titles. The Xbox 360 is actually two generations older than the current console.
Sony, on the other hand, seemed overzealous and myopic in the past. Unlike previous console generations, the PS4 does not support retro compatibility. When it first came out, the PlayStation 2 could play PlayStation 1 games, and now there are PlayStation 3 models that are backwards compatible with the PS2.
When a PS3 disc is placed into a PS4, what happens?
If you try to play a PS3 disc on a PS4, you won’t get very far. The explanation for this is straightforward: the PS3 and PS4 have fundamentally distinct system designs, making it extremely unlikely that they will ever be compatible with one another.
Since the PlayStation 4 doesn’t have the hardware required to run PS3 games, there is no straightforward method for doing so. Sony also decided it wasn’t worthwhile to create an emulator that could run the older games. Put simply, PS3 discs cannot be played on a PS4.
A platform’s specific hardware and software needs are taken into account during a game’s development. The PS4 was easier to use because it was based on the x86 architecture (the same as your PC), while the PS3 had a specialised CPU and required familiarity with new technologies and hardware.
This meant that programmers could start using the system right away. Due to the PS3’s complex architecture, many developers were initially hesitant to work on the system. The PlayStation 3 was a groundbreaking console that was light years ahead of its time.
However, Microsoft was ahead due to the ease with which their console’s games could be created. Although Sony appears to have learnt from its mistakes by including the more popular x86 architecture into its most recent consoles, the company was well aware that doing so would reduce backwards compatibility.
Ways Besides Backwards Compatibility to Enjoy Older Games on PS4
Although there is no method to play a PS3 game on a PS4, there are workarounds. Keep in mind that these aren’t necessarily the most sophisticated answers, but they could help ease your plight.
Now for PlayStation Xbox Live Gold
Sony, having previously acknowledged the drawbacks of omitting backward compatibility from their consoles, developed the PlayStation Now cloud-gaming service. More than 700 games, including many PS3 favourites, are available to watch on PlayStation Now.
Due to the nature of the streaming medium, some of your preferred selections may be absent. The main problem is that PlayStation Now is no longer available. Sony merged PlayStation Now and PlayStation Plus last year, with just the former’s function being maintained and its name being changed.
Streaming PS3 games is now a premium feature of PlayStation Plus, which also grants access to a plethora of additional perks. With a real PS3 console, you may stream video of the games directly from the servers and play them locally.
The PlayStation 4 lacks the necessary hardware for backwards compatibility, therefore you can’t download the game to play it on your own console. Pricing for PlayStation Premium ranges from $17.99 monthly to $49.99 quarterly or $119.99 annually.
If a game is suitable for players of different ages, it may be packaged with others of its kind and sold as a “cross-generation package.” In this way, you can enjoy the game on both generations without spending any more money.
Likewise, many games that had previously been released on other consoles were available on PS4 with modest updates. In one instance, Sony offered a temporary $9.99 upgrade for PS3 to PS4 game owners.
Accessing the game for download required authenticating into your account on the PS4 and visiting the PlayStation Store. Digital copies of the game will require a code to unlock any downloadable content. Games like Injustice: Gods Among Us Ultimate Edition, Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag, Battlefield 4, and Call of Duty: Ghosts all included this function.
While the window to take advantage of this offer has closed, existing accounts can continue to do so. You can receive the PS4 version of a PS3 game for free by looking for a notice of a next-gen update on the game’s box or digital code.
Alterations & Upgrades
Video games that were initially launched for earlier systems are now playable on newer gaming consoles thanks to the wide selection of remasters and remakes being made for video games these days.
They aren’t always 100% faithful to the original, but they usually improve on it with new features and fancier graphics. While we’re on the topic of remasters, it’s worth noting that you can enjoy remakes of games all the way back to the original PlayStation by playing remasters of PS3 games.
Some game remasters have even done better than the originals they are based on. Among these are Call of Duty: Modern Warfare Remastered, The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, Final Fantasy X, and Mafia: Definitive Edition.