The funny part of this: it was announced alongside a response criticizing Horizon Forbidden West for not being a free upgrade.
Last week, Sony held a State of Play presentation for the upcoming Horizon game. In it, they showcased a pre-order option that would allow users to play the game on PS4 and PS5 both. Being more expensive, this started a discussion online on whether they should be charging extra for cross generation support. The general sentiment was no. This was especially because of Sonys previous statements saying things like this would be free.
The negative response to this was so strong, in fact, that PlayStation head Jim Ryan released a statement on the PlayStation blog confirming that a cross-generation update for Horizon will still be free. But not without also revealing that all Sony exclusive games after that will be subject to a $10 fee to upgrade.
Thursday was to be a celebration of Horizon Forbidden West and the amazing team at Guerrilla working to deliver it on February 18, 2022. However, its abundantly clear that the offerings we confirmed in our pre-order kickoff missed the mark.
Last year we made a commitment to deliver free upgrades for our cross-gen launch titles, which included Horizon Forbidden West. While the pandemics profound impact pushed Forbidden West out of the launch window we initially envisioned, we will stand by our offer: Players who purchase Horizon Forbidden West on PlayStation 4 will be able to upgrade to the PlayStation 5 version for free.
I also want to confirm today that moving forward, PlayStation first-party exclusive cross-gen titles (newly releasing on PS4 & PS5)both digital and physical*will offer a $10 USD digital upgrade option from PS4 to PS5. This will apply to the next God of War and Gran Turismo 7, and any other exclusive cross-gen PS4 & PS5 title published by Sony Interactive Entertainment.
The $10 upgrade fee will only be for first party PlayStation games, not ALL games on the platform. Third party titles with a separate publisher will likely fall under whatever stance that particular publisher has on cross-gen upgrades.
This isnt a good look for Sony, whos held a rather exclusionary position on their platform. We remember how stingy they were (and still are) about cross-platform play, after all. This stance is made worse by Microsoft, whos Smart Delivery system allows players to purchase a game on Xbox One, Xbox Series S/X, or even PC, and still access said game on all three platforms for no additional cost.
Regardless of the platform, Horizon Forbidden West will release on PS4 and PS5 on February 18, 2022.