Can you play PS3 games on PS4?

Can you use PS3 games on the PS4 game console? The reason why backward compatibility is possible with the PlayStation 2, 3 and 5 respectively is that they are all backward compatible with the video games played on the previous generation game console

For a better understanding, let’s rephrase this question to can you play PS3 games on a PS4 game console by any means possible?

Unfortunately the answer is no. Using a disc to play or playing by downloading games from the PlayStation Network into your system will not work either.

While the Xbox One has the ability to play previous generation video games the PS4 and its other models like PS4 Pro and PS4 Slim does not have backward compatibility.


The design built into the PS3 and PS4 game consoles are different in quality, satisfaction and functions. Why the PS4 backward compatibility was not part of the function was that it was built with an AMD-based x86-64 architecture processor, while the PlayStation 3 was built with a cell central processing unit architecture.

The architecture of the PS4 system is vastly different from the PS3. This made the backward compatibility of PS4 game consoles impossible — different functional systems.

Is there a way to play PS3 games on the PS4 game console?  

It was stated by experts that if the system of PS4 possess an imitated program of the PS3 gaming console in the software of PS4, it would be able to operate the exact same way that the PS3 gaming console operates to enable it to play natively the PS3 video games.

But this will require extra work and will be a heavy load on the console’s part for it to achieve the purpose of being backward compatible with PS3 games. How then can you use the PS3 games on the PS4 console?

Sony gaming console features are difficult to copy by others. This is in view of the fact that the Microsoft Xbox one which is not backward compatible, became backward compatible after making a few changes on the console.

Instead of this, Sony used another means. Choosing quite an easier path in order to make sure that PS3 games play in the PS4 gaming console. And this was specifically to redesign individual PS3 games entirely to be able to respond to articles with captions such as can you play PS3 games on PS4.

That is why you can now buy PS3 and PS2 remastered games from a PlayStation store and afterwards download it to play on your PS4. An example of such games are Dark Souls, BioShock, Skyrim etc.

Also, the most common way that makes it possible for you to play some PS3 games on a PS4 gaming console is using the game service Sony provided. It is called PlayStation Now it is also known as a cloud gaming service. This cloud gaming service creates a form of false PS4 backward compatibility for the console.

What is PlayStation Now?

PlayStation Now is a Sony streaming service structured to enable for users to play games via streaming. It is a streaming service that is built for games only. This service is achieved using Wi-Fi based connection.

You can play PS3 games on PS4 gaming consoles using this service by simply streaming the games on the platform. This is the only possible means provided by Sony to both tackle the absence of PS4 backward compatibility and answer the question: Can you play PS3 games with PS4?

How does PlayStation Now function?

Before you stream you need to understand how this service works so that you can enjoy the features of this cloud gaming service. The PS3 game console has been installed in the PlayStation Now. This enables users to play the PS3 games on PS4 gaming console offline via streaming.

With your Wi-Fi connection you can download PS2 and PS3 games respectively from the PlayStation Now library which are stored in the online cloud, hence the name cloud gaming service. After downloading, how can you play PS3 games on PS4? You can now play it directly from your server with your PS4 gaming console.

You may want to ask how I play it from my server. It is easy. There is an actual PS3 gaming console installed in the PlayStation Now.

This is what you will use to play the game. And once this happens, the footage of the game is video streamed to your PS4 gaming console. As you interact with the game using your controller, the video stream returns to the server and it fires back the response to the player again.

How can you play PS3 games on the PS4 is captured in simple words, when you are using the PS3 console to play the PS3 games on the PlayStation Now, to play on your PS4 game console you stream it as a video.

For you to be able to enjoy this cloud gaming service and play it sufficiently, you must have high speed quality Wi-Fi connection or an internet connection of at least 5Mbps.

This is the requirement for you to be able to play any title of your choice within the cloud gaming service library. And just as there is Netflix for movies, this service is the Netflix for games. Because without this service how else can you use PS3 games on the PS4?

The installation or updating of the PS3 titles does not take place on the PlayStation Now service. Unlike the way it does on game consoles before gaming. In other words it does not take time before you begin to game.

How much is PlayStation Now subscription fee?

Sony PlayStation online streaming service has put in place three different plans for the payment of subscription levy. And just as they are different so also the plan prices are different.

These plans are monthly, quarterly, and yearly respectively. You are required to pay $9.99 monthly for subscription, $24.99 for quarterly and $59.99 for yearly plan. If you decide not to pay your subscription fee, there is no way you can use PS3 games on the PS4 console even if you have an account and a good internet connection?

Though, Sony cloud gaming service offers a seven-day free trial plan apart from the three plans on the platform, you still have to subscribe once your trial period comes to an end. The free trial is available for only those who are new members.

You should note that once the seven days free trial elapses, the service will begin to charge you automatically on a monthly basis. So you can terminate or cancel it once you are not satisfied with the service or not interested. Only by subscribing can you play PS3 games on PS4. 

Who is qualified for this service?

To be able to use this awesome game streaming service, you must have attained the age of 18 or above to be given access to the PlayStation store and also have an account with Sony Entertainment Network.

What do I need to do before I start?

To start or be part of this service, you will first of all need to download the PlayStation Now application, since you already have your own PlayStation 4 or a compatible PC.

Sony PlayStation Network store is the best and a most preferred place to get this application. Using an application obtained from google play store or any other online store to stream? The delivery will not be 100% as the one gotten from PlayStation network store.

Secondly, you have to make a payment for a subscription to grant you access to the PlayStation Now streaming service. Also know that you must have a dual shock controller, and must have opened your PlayStation Network account with proof of payment.

Another thing that should be in place for you to be able to enjoy the features of cloud gaming service despite the absence of PS4 backward compatibility is that you have to be an active subscribed PlayStation Now member of either a monthly or a seven-day free trial plan as you can afford or desire.

Lastly, a high and active recommended internet connection of at least 5Mbps cannot be overemphasized.

What PS3 games can be played on the PS4 console?

Seeing that there are possible ways to work out playing PS3 games on PS4 consoles explained above, there are games that you can play through PlayStation Now service without PS4 backward compatibility. 

The downside to this is that those who already own PS3 games through the PlayStation Now are left without compensation. This will Lead those games becoming dusty (unused), and they still have to pay for the games they have.

However, below are some games you can stream, and among them also are games Sony remastered for PS4 consoles.

They are: Saints Row 2, Saints Row The Third, Saints Row 4, Sonic Generations, The Last of Us, The Lego Movie Videogame, Uncharted: The Nathan Drake Collection, The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, Dark Souls etc.

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