Sony can get PS2 games running on PS4 now. No, you should not expect backwards compatibility.
Way back at the start of 2014, Sony told developers it would be bringing PSOne and PS2 games to PS4 via an emulator. We rejoiced, but it all went quiet after that.
Now it seems the platform holder has managed to get PS2 games working, at the very least. Eurogamer‘s Digital Foundry dug into the classic Star Wars titles bundled with the Battlefront PS4, and uncovered several telling indicators that the three PS2-era games are running on an emulator.
Update: Sony confirmed the emulator’s existence to Wired, but didn’t offer further information.
“We are working on utilizing PS2 emulation technology to bring PS2 games forward to the current generation. We have nothing further to comment at this point in time,” a representative said.
According to Digital Foundry’s report, the emulator upscales graphics, which is not ideal for 2D, but the 3D assets come off looking a bit fancier thanks to the increased resolution. The emulator uses black bars to enable image output at 1080p, so the pixel count has been increased about four times.
There isn’t much material to work with yet, so the full report is a bit hesitant to commit to an assessment of quality of the emulator. The video below gives a good look at it, though.
Hopefully we’ll see more developers take advantage of the emulator and re-release classic titles for use on PS4.