PlayStation 2 games are playable on PlayStation 4 thanks to emulation, and Sony has confirmed plans to tap into the technology to bring classic games to its latest console.
"We are working on utilizing PS2 emulation technology to bring PS2 games forward to the current generation," a representative for Sony Computer Entertainment of America said in a statement to Polygon.
There's no timetable on when these games will start to appear on the PS4, nor which games will make the cut. A few PS2 games were re-rated for a modern release by the PEGI Ratings Board in Europe back in September, which could be an early indication of what's to come.
Sony also teased the introduction of PS2 (and PS1) classics to PS4 in a survey sent around to a select group of gamers last month.
Gamers first discovered that PS2 games are playable on PS4 thanks to the older Star Wars games bundled with deluxe editions of Star Wars Battlefront, which launched on Tuesday. Star Wars: Racer Revenge, Star Wars: Jedi Starfighter, and Star Wars: Bounty Hunter were not simply ported over, players discovered, but are in fact emulations which recognize the current console as identical to their older, native system.
The confirmation seemingly contradicts Sony's earlier statements regarding backward compatibility on PS4. Sony Worldwide Studios head Shuhei Yoshida previously stated that the company had no plans to support backward compatibility. The reversal leaves things unclear as to what Sony's further plans are with regards to PS2 emulation.
The feature could be reserved for specific instances, like Star Wars Battlefront, or enabled so your old PS2 discs are supported natively by the console, similar to last week’s Xbox One update that added Xbox 360 compatibility.
Currently, you can access your old PS3 games through the streaming PlayStation Now service.