DualShock 4 controllers are only partially compatible with the PlayStation 5

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In context: In context: One of the biggest questions when heading into a new generation of consoles is: “What can I carry over from my old console?” Sony understands that users would be wondering this, especially since the PS5 has radically new hardware. So Isabelle Tomatis, Sony’s head of VR and peripherals marketing, posted a blog today explaining what users can expect of accessories, from the DualShock 4 to the PSVR.

Sony announced on Monday that the PlayStation 5 only has limited support for the DualShock 4 and other third-party controllers designed for the PlayStation 4. While they should work with backward-compatible PS4 games, the late-model gamepads will not function properly with next-generation PS5 titles.

The reason for this is that the DualSense controllers employ new technologies like haptic feedback and adaptive triggers that the DualShock doesn’t have. For example, in April, Sony revealed that the vibration function operates very differently than it does in the DualShock 4. The DualSense’s haptics can create a much wider variety of sensations from a hard recoil when firing a gun to the soft taps of falling sand.

While the DS4 and officially licensed third-party controllers should work with PS4 games played on the PS5, Sony makes no guarantees about any other last-generation accessories, even if they are licensed.

“Please note, not all PlayStation officially licensed or third-party peripherals/accessories may work on PS5,” Sony said. “We recommend checking with the manufacturer to confirm whether a product will work on PS5 and specific titles.”

There are some exceptions. Officially licensed specialty controllers like racing wheels, arcade sticks, and fight sticks will work with “supported” (back-compatible) PS4 titles and new PlayStation 5 games. Sony’s Platinum and Gold wireless headsets and third-party headphones that utilize USB should also not have any problems.

The big question is will the PS5 play nice with the PSVR. The short answer is yes. However, the PlayStation Camera, used for tracking, requires a special adapter to work with the PS5. Sony says it will provide this adapter for free to PSVR users. Details on how to get it are forthcoming.

The long and short of it is that if you like having a backup controller, you’re not going to want to skimp and just use your old DualShock 4. You’ll be better served by buying an extra DualSense, as it will get you through any game regardless of platform. Sony has not announced pricing, but you can expect the newest controller will run at least $60-$80.

Image credit: Aleksandra Suzi



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