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Bungie to PS5 owners: Stop playing the old PS4 version of Destiny 2 already

A screenshot of a character in Destiny 2
Enlarge / PS5 owners, ask yourselves: Does this landscape truly look as good as it could?

Destiny 2 developer Bungie says a “notable” number of PS5 owners are still playing the worse-looking PS4 version of the game on their high-end console hardware.

Bungie first offered a free PS5 update for the PS4 version of Destiny 2 in late 2020, shortly after the console’s release. To take advantage of that update, though, PS5 owners need to go through a few steps to find and manually download the PS5-specific files, as outlined in a Bungie support page and a PlayStation Support page.

Without that download, the PS5 simply plays the PS4 version of the game in the system’s backward-compatibility mode. Digital Foundry’s write-up goes into detail on the “true 4K resolution” and 60 to 120 fps gameplay offered by the upgraded PS5 version of the game. Bungie’s latest “This Week at Bungie” update also explicitly notes that players on the PS4 version are missing out on improvements in frame rates and graphics.

This is in contrast to the Xbox Series X/S, which uses Microsoft’s “Smart Delivery” system to automatically download the version of the game best tailored to the user’s hardware.

A continuing problem

This kind of versioning confusion isn’t a completely new problem for PlayStation owners. Just after the PS5 launched, some Call of Duty: Black Ops players on the PS5 reportedly ended up accidentally downloading the PS4 version of the game as well and launching that underpowered version unknowingly when it was time to play.

In December, Sony rolled out a system update to make this difference more apparent. Now, the system can pop up a “confirm game version” warning when players load the PS4 version of a game that also has a PS5 version available.

Unfortunately, this warning doesn’t seem to apply to Destiny 2 for some reason. For that game, players with the PS4 version still have to know to dive into the game’s product page and manually choose to download the upgrade files.

The difference may be especially obscured for players who purchased Destiny 2 as a physical disc. That physical package has been labeled as a PS4 game since its launch in 2017 and has yet to receive an updated package noting the availability of an enhanced PS5 version of the game.

It’s unclear just how many Destiny 2 players make up the “notable” minority that are not taking full advantage of their PS5 hardware. Still, the fact that Bungie feels the number is worth noting at all suggests that this continues to be a problem for the developer and for Sony in general.

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