An arguably huge miss for PlayStation despite its impressive library of games on any given console is the sheer lack of backwards compatibility or care Sony has had for investing in players being able to access their older games over the decades. It seems the tide may be turning though. As PlayStation prepares to roll out a new PS Plus subscription that includes tiers for older games, it has also seemingly established a new Game Preservation team that will be dedicated to the cause of restoring older PlayStation console classics.
Word of this new PlayStation Game Preservation team was originally seen on LinkedIn where new PlayStation Senior Build Engineer Garrett Fredley announced he had just been hired as part of the new department. According to Fredley, the Game Preservation team at PlayStation has only just been established with him as one of the initial hires for the recently-formed crew. It remains to be seen what kind of fruits we’ll see out of the team’s labor. That said, it’s a promising turn for PlayStation, especially as it prepares to roll out its new PS Plus tiered subscription program that includes streamed and downloadable PS1, PS2, and PSP games.
PlayStation has historically been extremely dismissive of the idea of backwards compatibility and making older PlayStation games playable on new consoles like the PS4 or PS5. It comes right from the top where leadership like PlayStation head Jim Ryan himself has questioned why players would continue to be interested in older games. Sony and PlayStation have also often cited difficulty in making older PlayStation discs playable on the new consoles.
Even so, Xbox has conversely shown a strong willingness to invest in backwards compatibility. This, alongside its highly successful Xbox Game Pass have seemingly pushed PlayStation to change its mood on the matter. With the new PS Plus about to roll out in late May/early June, and now this Game Preservation team established, it seems possible we could finally see PlayStation rework its position on classic games throughout its vast library.