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PlayStation 4 won't show Trophies when you're offline, still requires sync

Samit Sarkar (he/him) is Polygon’s deputy managing editor. He has more than 15 years of experience covering video games, movies, television, and technology.

The PlayStation 4 will not allow users to look at their Trophies or Friends lists when the console is offline, Polygon has learned using a retail unit received for review purposes.

The PS4 still doesn't sync Trophies in the background — every time you load up your list of virtual accomplishments, the console takes a moment to sync with Sony's servers. Perhaps because of that, you can't view your Trophies list if you're not connected to the internet. On PS3, you can scroll through your Trophies whenever you want, and you can sync them the next time you're online. You can definitely earn Trophies while playing PS4 games offline, but if you try to look at your list when you've disabled the console's internet connection, you'll get the following error message:

[Connect to the Internet] is turned off.

There's no caching of data, either. Even if you viewed your Trophies and then disconnected from the internet a second later and tried to look at the list again, you'd get that same message. It seems that whenever you bring up the Trophy list, the PS4 attempts to contact Sony's servers, and it won't display the list unless it can sync to get the latest version.

Like on the PS3, you also can't view your friends list or your own profile on PS4 while offline. The same applies to the PlayStation App on mobile devices — when we tested the app on an Android phone, we couldn't view our profile, friends or Trophies while our data connection and Wi-Fi were disabled.

While offline, you can look at the bookmarks you've saved in the PS4's browser, and read messages that you've previously sent and received. But it's telling that when you're offline, most of the items in the PS4's dashboard navigation bar tell you to connect to the internet.

We tested these features with a PS4 as the primary console tied to a PlayStation Network account, and as a non-primary console on that account. It's possible that this could change when Sony officially launches the PS4 tomorrow, but for now it looks like this is the way it will work. We've reached out to Sony for more details, and will update this article with any information we receive.

Correction: We mistakenly said that the PS3 was capable of viewing a user's profile and friends list when it's in offline mode, which it cannot. We apologize for the error.

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