PS5 will offer backward compatibility with the PS4 and Sony has confirmed it along with showing a video detailing the load times difference. They have updated a new patent giving us an insight on how improved performance is possible for the PS4 games.
When it was first confirmed that PS5 will include backward compatibility with the PS4, it wasn’t clear how it will work in theory, and will the game get any improvements when running on the new hardware. The load times comparison made it clear that the new SSD tech will play a clear role in reducing the load times.
Sony Interactive Entertainment updated their backward compatibility patent on May 28 to explain how they plan to tackle this issue. The patent goes by the title “Real-time adjustment of application-specific operating parameters for backward compatibility” and explains how developers can ensure backward compatibility while also squeezing out faster performance where it is possible to do so without messing with the game’s code.
“The performance of an application on a new device may be closely matched to the performance of that same application on the legacy device by tuning the operating parameters of the new device, ” reads the patent. It then goes on to explain some of the parameters that can be adjusted this way including clock frequencies, instruction launch rates, and so on. This allows the developers to test and optimize the game that they are releasing for backward compatibility with the new hardware without having to mess with the game’s code.
“This process may be repeated until the operating parameters are set optimally for the application on the new system. To further optimize, one can adjust the execution of the new hardware to see if the application can be run faster on the new hardware without causing it to fail.”
Basically, from the sound of it, Sony is hoping to bring backward compatibility on the PS5 without tweaking the original game’s code. The hardware can try to emulate the game in the same way as the original hardware and if this optimization work is done, the developers can try to see if it is possible to improve the performance of the game itself to run better than the original hardware.