Sony Reportedly Working On PlayStation 3 Emulation For PS5

Sony Reportedly Working On PlayStation 3 Emulation For PS5
Image: SIE

Last week, a social media fire broke out when Sony announced that PlayStation 3 games would not come to the PlayStation 5 via the new PS Plus program. Debate raged all week about why Sony would omit popular PS3 titles from its new library (even though we definitely know why). This morning, a new rumour is pouring fuel on that fire.

As we saw in the news overload that was last week, Sony Interactive Entertainment announced their plans to rejuvenate the PlayStation Plus format with a new tier system. This tier system will introduce three subscription levels: Essential (which is what we have now), Extra (which includes more PlayStation 4 and 5 titles, as well as some classics), and Deluxe (Australia’s version of Premium, which is more games than Extra but less than Premium). The big stinker, however, is that Australia gets significantly less from this update to the PlayStation Plus system as PlayStation Now is now currently available here.

Something that’s bugged PlayStation users in Australia for a while now is that due to our lack of the PS Now service, we’ve been unable to play any PlayStation 3 titles due to them only being available via cloud streaming. However, according to recent reports, users might be seeing a change on the horizon.

This aforementioned talk about change comes from a recent GamesBeat Decides episode, where VentureBeat editor Jeff Grubb mentions that he’s ‘looked and asked’ around, and that ‘it sounds like Sony might be working on emulation for PS3 for PS5’. Grubb continues to say that it ‘might take some time’, to which his co-host Mike Minotti replies, ‘That’s fine! Let it take time, let it take money, but just do it.’

While this isn’t a concrete confirmation of PlayStation 3 titles being playable offline on the PlayStation 5, it is a bit of hope. So no solid confirmation from Sony, but rather an ‘insider scoop’ of what might be coming down the track. It’s definitely something that fans of PlayStation have been wanting for a while now, with many noting that the make-up of the PlayStation 3’s games is probably what’s holding Sony back.

On the other hand, there’s a whole market that Sony could grab with the confirmation of PlayStation 3 emulation for the PlayStation 5, and that’s the market of countries that don’t have access to PlayStation Now as well as countries that have terrible internet connections. Hey, that’s us!

While it’s clear that in The Age of Online, cloud streaming looks like it’s going to be the future of gaming, there are still many issues such as lack of access to services and reliable internet connection that hold these big dreams back. I guess, for now, it’s easier for games companies to have their games streamable rather than just offer them offline because if the game works like dogshit, they can just blame you and your lack of high internet speeds.


  • I suspect PS3 emulation would be a benefit even in the territories where they offer PS Now. It can’t be cheap to build data centres full of Cell chips, and it’s not like IBM is improving the hardware. In addition to running the games locally on customer hardware, it’d let them upgrade the streaming service on modern x86 hardware.

  • I’m not sure I’d class paying less to not have PlayStation Now as a big stinker, sounds like a win.

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