PS3 emulation on PS5 hinted at by new Sony patent

A new patent filed by Sony could suggest the company is one step closer to making PS3 emulation on PS5 a reality.

The complex patent – labelled “Systems and Methods For Converting A Legacy Code Into An Updated Code” – shows a method of using classic PlayStation peripherals on PS5, as spotted by GameRant. These include devices such as the PlayStation Mouse, PlayStation Eye, PlayStation Move wand, and a PSP Go. What’s particularly interesting here is the number of accessories and controllers from the PS3 era.

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ps3 emulation on ps5

But why would Sony be interested in supporting these peripherals on PS5? Like many patents, this latest Sony concept may never materialise though the company is reported to be working on PS3 emulation on PS5. Supporting this theory is a recent PlayStation job listing which reveals Sony is looking for a “Classics engineer”.

PS3 emulation has always been a tough nut to crack. Although game preservation and modding communities have made breakthroughs – RPCS3 often pointed to as an example – it’s widely accepted that the PS3’s cell processor and fiddly architecture are roadblocks too obstructive and costly for Sony to allocate the required resources to untangle.

Those who subscribe to Sony’s newly revamped PlayStation Plus service can already play PS3 games on PS5 though with one major caveat. Similar to PlayStation Now, the PS3 library is stream-only and while it’s true that a growing number of households have access to high speed internet, there are plenty of subscribers unable to access this huge portion of the PS Plus classics catalogue.

Proper PS3 emulation would help pivot the perception of many that Sony isn’t interesting in preserving its older games. With the relaunch on PlayStation Plus, we’re starting to see the company step in a different direction. It may just be a flash in the pan, though Sony’s treatment of PS1 titles – and even going as far as to add trophy support – will hopefully become more widespread as more games join the service.

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Senior Editor bursting with lukewarm takes and useless gaming trivia. May as well surgically attach my DualSense at this point.