Earlier this week, EA confirmed Madden NFL 21 players will receive a free upgrade from PS4 to PS5, similar to Xbox Series X’s Smart Delivery system. Of course, this raised questions about whether other PS4/PS5 titles will make use of the same feature. Reportedly, Sony won’t mandate that such a system is upheld across the board. Instead, publishers are free to make this decision at their own discretion.
This report comes by way of Gamespark, a Japanese website that reached out to Sony Japan for further information. Twitter user BlackKite translated and summarized the response Gamespark claimed to receive. See BlackKite’s post in tweet below:
Apparently the update program for PS4>PS5 software copies will be done at the publisher’s own discretion, but SIE stated that they will flexibly support these upgrades even in Japan as well
(note that it’s still unknown whether they deal with PS4>PS5DE)https://t.co/GIrsbjqg45 pic.twitter.com/UKDkMoPkgn
— 黒凧 BlackKite (@bk2128) June 17, 2020
To be fair, it appears Microsoft is running its Smart Delivery program in a similar fashion. Yes, according to Microsoft, all Xbox exclusives optimized for Xbox Series X will support free Smart Delivery upgrades. Publishers, however, will get to decide whether or not their third-party experiences take advantage of the program.
With all of the above in mind, reason suggests that if a third-party publisher’s Xbox One game is upgradeable to Xbox Series X for free, the same will hold true for PS4 to PS5 releases. We’ll have to wait and see if such a practice actually comes to fruition, though. It’s also worth noting that Sony has yet to confirm whether all of its first-party titles will adopt a Smart Delivery-like system.
Late last month, a report claimed Sony sent a memo to developers and publishers about PS5 forward compatibility. Allegedly, starting in mid-July, every PS4 game submitted to Sony must also work on PS5.
The PlayStation 5 is scheduled to hit store shelves on an unspecified date this holiday season.
[Source: Gamespark via BlackKite on Twitter]