Just two days ago, Sony announced that Horizon Forbidden West wouldn't offer free upgrades for those of you looking to make the jump from PS4 to PS5. That announcement didn't go over so well, and now Sony is walking back on that decision and offering cross-gen upgrades at no charge.
The PlayStation Blog post that broke the bad news stated that players who wanted to experience both the PS4 and PS5 versions of Horizon Forbidden West would have to purchase one of the more expensive, premium versions of the game that started at $80. The Digital Deluxe, Collector's, and Regalla Editions were your only options for cross-gen support, and this was after Sony CEO Jim Ryan specifically noted Horizon Forbidden West as one of the exclusives set to receive free cross-gen upgrades.
Folks who were hoping to capitalize on that promise were pretty upset, and in a new PlayStation Blog post, Ryan acknowledged they "missed the mark." Sony's reversal now clearly notes that if you purchase Horizon Forbidden West on PS4, then you will be able to upgrade to the PS5 version for free. The site has since crashed, but Ryan's entire updated note reads:
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, it’s 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 pandemic’s 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.
So, you're now getting what Sony said you'd receive last year, and now future PlayStation first-party exclusives will come with a $10 digital upgrade option. Some folks still seem a bit upset over the lack of a physical disc in more expensive versions with other material goods, but that's also a practice becoming more common and not likely to be reserved.
The whole thing was a bit of a bizarre back and forth after Ryan's 2020 statement. Sony has already shared a peek how Forbidden West will perform better on PS5 too, so it's no wonder fans were frustrated. And now that it's settled, you can get said upgrade next year when Horizon Forbidden West launches on February 18.