A number of technical outlets and YouTubers have been testing the new PS Plus classics now that the service has rolled out in Asia, and they’ve all unanimously reported that the games perform poorly on PS5. We personally waited to see a detailed analysis on this one and the trusty folks over at Digital Foundry have delivered. In his testing, John Linneman found that 50Hz PAL versions are mostly a “stutter-fest” and look “truly awful.”
What’s going on with the new PS Plus classics?
Analysts have noticed that US NTSC versions of the games are mostly fine, but unfortunately, most of Sony’s first-party classics in the Premium catalog are the disastrous 50Hz PAL versions. Digital Foundry recons that the reason these games are performing poorly is because the PS5 supports a minimum of 60Hz whereas the PAL versions of PS Plus classics are designed for 50Hz displays.
“Even if the PS5 could swap into a 50Hz mode, the point is that PAL game versions during this era were always compromised,” Linneman noted. As an example, Ape Escape’s PAL version always ran slower than the original Japanese and NTSC versions. Apparently, Sony released a “fix” for the issues players are encountering with the PAL games but it seems to have made things worse by introducing a weird ghosting effect.
On a positive note, Sony did make good on its promise of enhanced resolution. The classics look crisp and support up to 1920×1440. And again, NTSC versions are mostly fine. It’s unclear why Sony chose PAL versions of the classics and there are a number of theories floating around as to why this is the case, but none that seem to make much sense since a lot of the classics are first-party games.