P.T. Doesn’t Work On PS5, Though At One Point It Apparently Did

P.T. Doesn’t Work On PS5, Though At One Point It Apparently Did
Screenshot: Konami

Playable horror teaser P.T. isn’t backwards compatible on PS5, even if you try to transfer it directly from an existing PS4, and it’s not clear why.

Load up the library of games associated with your PlayStation Network account on the next-gen console, as Kotaku Editor-in-Chief Stephen Totilo did, and P.T. will have an icon with a slash through it saying it’s not available to download. A message saying “playable on PS4″ will instead direct you to go back to playing it on the old hardware.

Screenshot: KotakuScreenshot: Kotaku

But Polygon’s Michael McWhertor reports that it was possible to play P.T. on PS5 at one point by transferring it over directly from a PS4 it was stored on:

P.T. was the first PS4 title I tested through backward compatibility on PS5. On Oct. 24, I transferred my copy of P.T. to and played the game on my PS5, picking up from a recent save that carried over from PS4. Then I restarted P.T. from the beginning, and played through a bit more. It seemed to work fine.

After trying again this week, McWhertor wrote that it was no longer possible to manually transfer P.T. to a PS5.

The beloved proof-of-concept demo for Kojima Production’s cancelled Silent Hill project was pulled from PSN back in 2015. Even people who had already installed it once before weren’t able re-download it. This was back during Konami’s protracted separation from veteran Metal Gear developer Hideo Kojima, and whatever its reasons, the act of scrubbing P.T. from PSN seemed to make it clear the publisher didn’t want any more people to play the demo.

Back in October, Konami confirmed to GamesRadar that P.T. would not be downloadable from the PlayStation Store on PS5, but left open the possibility that players who already had it installed on their PS4s might be able to transfer it over themselves. It seems that ultimately Konami decided against allowing even that.

Sony told Polygon that no longer making P.T. backwards compatible on PS5 was “a publisher decision.”

P.T. remains a fascinating work of video game art in its own right, and it’s a shame that it will now be that much harder for players to preserve its legacy. It’s also a fascinating artefact, not just from a highly anticipated but ultimately cancelled project, but from one of the messier chapters in Konami’s history (for those who may have forgotten, the publisher reportedly banned Kojima from attending the 2015 Game Awards where Metal Gear Solid V: Phantom Pain was up for consideration for Game of the Year).

Konami did not immediately respond to a request by Kotaku for comment.


    • I’m all for sticking the boot in Konami but I imagine the legal logistics surrounding the demo are absolutely insane.
      It’s one of the strangest oddities in the gaming world at this stage.

      • I can get them not allowing it to be re-downloaded but I don’t really see that there’d be any legal hurdles with people transferring it directly from PS4->PS5. Seems like they just want to erase it from existence.

        • They definitely want to erase it, the only reason it’s persisted so long is their obligations to Sony for the past/current gen.
          The legal murky ground would be to other parties, agents, actors, former employees etc
          I can’t imagine many would be putting their hands up but all it takes is one so the entire thing is a possible liability (for Konami, great for everyone else really)

  • Honestly, unless there are legal issues surrounding licensing or something, just make it available, fuck, put $5 on it, people will pay, lol.

  • The interesting part of this fact is that publishers can turn off backwards compatibility for their games after the fact on PS5. I can’t see that causing any problems down the line.

    • Certainly interesting but it’s definitely a unique case.
      I can’t imagine many developers/publishers would be willing to do the same with a fully released and supported title.

      • I imagine given that PT is a purely digital title, it certainly made it much easier to do so.

        Like you’ve said though, I doubt a dev/publisher would do it with a full release, especially if there are physical copies, since I imagine those would still work, although I might be wrong on that.

      • I guess the question is: if you managed to transfer PT over to a PS5 and play it before, is that copy still playable? If it isn’t, then we’re probably looking at some kind of signature revocation list.

        All console vendors require developers to have their software signed as a way to ensure they pay royalties. These types of systems usually have some facility to revoke signatures, usually by having the device periodically download a list of revoked signatures that has itself been signed by the platform key.

        Such a system would work just as well for a digital title as a disc based game, assuming the console was connected to the Internet.

        • Good point, if the method they use to make titles such as P.T unplayable is to indeed to simply nullify or delete the licenses associated with it working on the PS5, then I guess it would probably be just as effective with disc games as it is with digital.

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