Sony confirms PS5 cross-gen save transfers are “a developer decision”

A growing story over the last couple of weeks has been that, where many cross-generational releases on Xbox will support cross-gen saves via the Smart Delivery scheme, those same games with free upgrades from PlayStation 4 to PlayStation 5 will not do so on Sony’s platforms.

Sony have now confirmed that this is “a developer decision” and one that will vary on a title-by-title basis.

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The company also state that two of their key cross-gen launch titles, Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales and Sackboy: A Big Adventure will support game save transfers. For Miles Morales, “when players decide to upgrade from PS4 to PS5 their game saves will transfer,” while the function will require an update after release for Sackboy: A Big Adventure. Sony will provide additional details closer to launch, but the wording implies that this is a one way street from current to next generation.

Games such as Dirt 5, Yakuza: Like A Dragon, Maneater and Planet Coaster: Console Edition have all been confirmed to not allow you to transfer your single player save files and progression from PS4 to PS5, but let you take saves and progression back and forth between generations on Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S. That said, Dirt 5’s Playgrounds uploads and Planet Coaster’s Frontier Workshop does allow for some online elements to be transferred between generations.

Games where player progression is stored online are also relatively safe bets. Destiny 2, Fortnite, Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War and others that already have cross-platform progression will all allow you to take your multiplayer progression back and forth.

And on the other hand, it’s not all smelling of roses on the Xbox side. Developers that do not adopt Smart Delivery also do not necessarily support cross-generational saves. The implication through all of this, however, is that Microsoft have created a system to handle the process, but Sony have not.

This seems to be down to a fundamental difference between how the two ecosystems will work, as explained by Tripwire Interactive for Maneater:

  • This is not a different application/game on XBox Series S & X and saves and trophies/achievements will carry forward.
  • This IS a separate application/game on PlayStation 5 and trophies, stats and saves will not transfer

Of course, there’s no such concerns for backward compatible games. For PS4 titles, your saves can be transferred to PS5 in a number of ways, whether via LAN or WiFi, using an external USB drive, or cloud saves as part of a PlayStation Plus subscription.

Sony have today detailed a lot about the state of backward compatibility on PlayStation 5, revealing the 10 games that absolutely will not work on PS5, as well as revealing the slightly baffling fact that to use PSVR on PS5, you have to use the PS4 camera and not the new PS5 one…

Source: PS Blog

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