Psyonix has explained why Rocket League runs at 120fps on the Xbox Series X but not on the PlayStation 5, making it clear why Call of Duty Warzone neither and how backwards compatibility works or doesn’t work on Sony’s next-gen console.
According to Psyonix, Xbox One games only require a “minor patch” to run at a higher frame rate on Xbox Series X/S. However, PlayStation 4 titles need a complete port over PlayStation 5 to take advantage of the higher specced machine and run at double their original frame rate if they were locked at 60fps.
“Our team’s main focus this year was our recent free to play transition and updating major features like our Tournaments system,” Psyonix told Eurogamer.net. “Due to this, we had to make tough decisions on what else we could achieve,” added the development team, going deeper into what’s needed for a PS4 game to run at 120fps on PlayStation 5.
“Enabling 120hz on Xbox Series X/S is a minor patch, but enabling it on PS5 requires a full native port due to how backwards compatibility is implemented on the console, and unfortunately wasn’t possible due to our focus elsewhere,” said a spokesperson from the studio now owned by Epic Games.
This is the same reason why Call of Duty Warzone was quietly updated on Xbox Series X/S to run at up to 120fps, while the PS5 version doesn’t support that frame rate.
The circumstance was quite suspicious as Call of Duty Black Ops: Cold War supports 120fps on both the platforms, instead, since PS5 is capable of doing that just like the next-gen Xbox consoles.
In that case, Activision and developers Treyarch and Raven Software worked on a version of Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War tailored explicitly for PS5, locked behind a paywall whether it’s $5 for the upgrade or $70 for the standalone purchase.
As for Rocket League, Psyonix doesn’t have the resources to work on a similar next-gen release, and this is why it won’t run at 120fps on PlayStation 5.
It’s unclear whether the Japanese platform owner intends or is even able to work around this issue to allow higher frame rates to be available on last-gen titles coming to PS5 via backwards compatibility.