Even if you don’t have a PS5, you can still experience the excitement with a PS4.
It’s been more than seven months since the PlayStation 5 hit stores, but it’s still difficult to get your hands on what’s been dubbed the fastest-selling console in US history. The PS5 continues to fly off of virtual shelves faster than retailers can restock — keep up with our PlayStation 5 restock updates here.
The PS5 includes player perks that can save you money, like a backward compatibility feature that lets you play many older games on the new console, and partnerships with some publishers that are letting players upgrade PS4 games to PS5 for free, boosting them to 4K resolution. The first major PS5 update included a new feature called cross-generation Share Play, allowing PS4 users to try out their friends’ PS5 games by virtually sharing a screen or passing a controller. You can even play PS5 co-op games together. (Here’s our list of the best PS5 games so far.)
Here’s what’s new in PS5’s first major system update
Here’s how to use Share Play if you’re still hunting down a PS5 while rocking the PS4.
What is PlayStation Share Play?
PlayStation Share Play is a feature that allows PS5 console users to let their friends with PS4 consoles view their game screen or try out their PS5 games for free. You can pass your controller virtually to a friend, or pass a second controller virtually to play co-op games together.
What do I need to use Share Play?
To use Share Play, all you need is a PS4, a friend with a PS5, and a good internet connection for screen sharing (Sony recommends a minimum upload speed of 2 megabits per second). PS5 owners can host for 60 minutes per session. After that, you can just start a new session. The player hosting the session and the player visiting must be friends on the PlayStation Network and be online at the same time. For now, only two people can Share Play at a time. The PS4 will also need to be running system software 2.0 or higher.
Share Play won’t work if the game you want to play isn’t available in the visitor’s PlayStation Store, if the visitor’s parental control levels don’t match the game, or if the visitor’s age is lower than the game’s age rating.
Yuffie is in Final Fantasy 7 Remake, but only on PS5 — Share Play could let you play with her on PS4.
How to use Share Play on a PS4 or PS5
Here’s how to start a Share Play session with a friend. You can start a session whether you have a PS4 or a PS5.
1. On the Invite Players screen, add the friend you want to start a party with by searching for them, or select them from your friends list. Follow the instructions and choose Send Invitation.
2. Load the game you want to play.
3. Press the share button on your DualShock 4 controller.
4. Choose Share Play on your TV screen.
5. Select the friend you want to share your game with from your list. After they accept your invitation, your game systems will link and the 60-minute session will start. After the session expires, you can immediately restart another session and pick up where you left off.
Virtually share your PS5 controller with your friend on PS4 with Share Play.
The person you’re Share Playing with will be able to see your screen as well as talk to you if you’re both playing with microphones. After you’re in a session together, you can also let your friend try out the game. Here’s how:
1. Press the share button on your controller.
2. Choose Go to Party for Share Play on the TV.
3. Select Give Controller to Visitor.
4. From there you can choose either Allow Visitor to Play as You or Play a Game Together (if your game has a multiplayer mode). The host will need to be a PlayStation Plus member to do this, but the visitor doesn’t. Playing co-op requires both gamers to be PlayStation Plus members, but only the host needs a copy of the game in both cases.
To go back to basic screen sharing, press the share button on your controller again, select Go to Party for Share Play and choose Take back Controller. This is also the path you’ll take to Stop Share Play.
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