PS5 vs Xbox Series X backwards compatibility explained: Which console supports more classic games?

With the new generations coming out this year, it’s time to start thinking about playing your old games on new consoles.

by Jason Coles
PS5 vs Xbox Series X

We know so much about the Xbox Series X and PS5 now. We’ve had some huge dumps of information regarding the next generation of consoles, and one of the most exciting features is backwards compatibility.

It’s always nice to know that we’ll be able to enjoy some of our favourite games with a slightly shinier coat of paint.

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It’s this reason that you’ll probably want to know which console does it better. Keep reading to learn all…

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PS5 backwards compatibility – how good is it?

Let’s start with the PS5, purely because the PS4 thoroughly lacked in the backwards compatibility department. So, the PS5 does have backwards compatibility, and it might cover MORE than just PS4 titles.

The PS5 will, apparently, be able to play the majority of the top 100 PS4 games when it launches, and it offers a considerable improvement to how the games run, though the main one that they’ve mentioned is the load times.

This list is meant to grow, and it seems as though it will eventually include the majority of PS4 titles. And that’s not all!

A Sony patent which is doing the rounds online seems to suggest that PS1, PS2 and PS3 games could come to PS5 via a cloud-based service of some sort. It’s unclear if this is part of PS Now, or something new, but either way – it’s an exciting thing to think about!

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PS5 console design history evolution ps1 ps2 ps3 ps4 playstation 5
ON CLOUD NINE: PS1, PS2 and PS3 games could come to the PS5 through the magic of streaming from the cloud!

Xbox Series X backwards compatibility – will it be better?

The Xbox Series X also takes old games very seriously, which is unsurprising as the Xbox One already has backwards compatibility too.

Microsoft helped mark a steady rise for old games in this current generation, which was helped along massively by services like Game Pass.

They will then, to the surprise of nobody, be making the Xbox Series X backwards compatible.

What’s cooler than that though, is that the Xbox Series X will be able to (technically) run the entirety of the Xbox One catalogue of games with no emulation.

You see, it’s all baked into the new console at a hardware level, but then each game gets boosted with the almighty new power of the upcoming console as well.

That’s an impressive feat on its own, but it actually gets even better: the Xbox Series X backwards compatibility was shown to work with Fusion Frenzy, a game which released on the very first Xbox nearly twenty years ago.

So, it’s pretty clear that if you’re after backwards compatibility, then you’ll be pretty damn happy with the Xbox Series X.

Playing games from five years ago is cool, and all, but playing games that are old enough to drink in some countries is hard to wrap your head around. Maybe it’s finally time we all played Jade Empire again.

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Jason Coles