PS5’s DualSense works better on PS4 games partially thanks to Naughty Dog’s feedback

The PS5‘s DualSense controller is significantly more fancy than the DualShock 4. The new pad is fitted with adaptive triggers as well as haptic feedback, two big features that the PS4 controller does not have. This discrepancy can mean that some PS4 games feel differently on the PS5 when playing through backwards compatibility. But it looks like The Last of Us studio Naughty Dog may have had a paw hand in closing that generational gap.

The Last of Us 2 Co-Game Director Kurt Margenau explained this odd phenomenon and how he was able to contribute to changing it on Twitter. In the thread, he spoke about how the DualSense and DualShock have fundamentally different vibration patterns. The older controller has two weights that spin around while the newer one has “two weights that move forward and back and can express frequency and amplitude at extremely high fidelity and low latency.” Such unique methods of vibration mean that rumble coded for the PS4 felt different on the PS5 when using a DualSense even if players might not have immediately noticed it.

Margenau expressed this to Sony, which led to the controller update back in April that came alongside the much-anticipated console firmware that enabled cold storage for PS5 games. Since that update, the DualSense controller now more accurately simulates a DualShock 4 and is closer to what the developers originally programmed.

And this is all without any changes to the game’s code. Some users, as Margenau notes, might be feeling this change after revisiting The Last of Us 2 because of its recent PS5 patch. One such streamer noted the difference two days before Margenau’s tweet while others chimed in in the thread claiming they also felt the difference.

Margenau did state that he “got to give feedback” to Sony, implying that he might not have been the only one to suggest this. He also thanked the firmware team that was undoubtedly a big reason why this change was able to happen. PS4 games probably won’t be able to take full advantage of the DualSense, but this is probably the next best thing.