Sony has released a 60Hz patch for its classic PlayStation games, but it's unfortunately introduced new visual problems.
Last week, Sony launched its PS Plus rebrand in Asia, re-releasing PS1, PS2, and PSP games on PS4 and PS5. However, Sony was criticized for using 50Hz PAL versions of its PS1 games, which run slower than the 60Hz North American and Japanese NTSC counterparts, even in NTSC regions.
Looking to fix this issue, Sony quietly issued a new patch on May 27, which claims to have "Improved PAL output." However, it soon became apparent that this update did more harm than good.
Spotted by Twitter user @windycornertv (opens in new tab), this patch upscales these PAL games to 60Hz through frame blending, a process that duplicates frames to achieve the desired output speed. It's a crude method, one that's created a ghosting effect in Jumping Flash, Everybody’s Golf, and Kurushi. You can see the full comparison below.
Sony has released a patch for a few PS1 Classics on the PS4/PS5 that "improves" the PAL output.The patch upscales the PAL code to 60hz by blending frames.But the technique has introduced these horrible ghosting artifacts.Here's a before and after comparison.#ps5 #ps4 pic.twitter.com/S1yphRrKuQMay 27, 2022
Right now, Sony hasn't officially commented on why it chose PAL editions for its first-party retro re-releases. It's believed these might've been chosen over the 60Hz NTSC versions because they include multi-language support, but Sony hasn't confirmed this. Some third-party games like Tekken 2 do use the NTSC edition, so, assuming Sony doesn't change course, don't expect this to be a widespread patch.
Far from premium
It's not a good look for Sony's classic PlayStation games so far. Unfortunately, there's no way to reverse this update, so anyone using an Asian PSN account for early access is stuck with these ghosting issues.
Despite these issues, it's not all bad news for retro fans as each classic game boasts some new quality-of-life features. These include upscaled resolution, higher frame rates, and, in select cases, trophy support. For PS1 games alone, you'll also find a significant range of resolution options and visual filters.
While these retro classics can be bought individually, they form a major part of PS Plus Premium, the revamped subscription service's highest tier. With PS Plus relaunching next month across Europe, Australia, and the Americas, we're hoping it'll fix these problems beforehand.