As Eurogamer reports (opens in new tab), the mistake can occur if you pick the Ultimate Edition or Cross-gen bundles of the game on PS5. Both come with the PS5 and PS4 versions of Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War, and if you download them all at once, there's a chance you could be booting up the PS4 version when you get stuck into the game.
Activision Support addressed how to make sure you're playing the next-gen version of the FPS from Treyarch and Raven Software. By going to the game tile on your PS5 dashboard, you then need to scroll down and highlight the "Play" tab. There you should see three dots you can click on to open up the menu. From here, you'll be able to select "PS5 Full Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War", which will then launch the next-gen version of the game.
To make sure you’re playing the next-gen version of #BlackOpsColdWar on PS5:1. Highlight the game tile on the Dashboard2. Scroll down and highlight “Play”3. Select the 3 dots and open the menu 4. Select “PS5 | Full | Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War”5. Launch and enjoy!November 14, 2020
As we've reported previously in our breakdown of the next-gen upgrade for Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War on PS5 and Xbox Series X, the next-gen version is locked behind a paywall rather than coming as a free update like a lot of recent releases. The many editions for the game have also made things a tad more convoluted, and with no clear indication in-game, it's easy to see how players could have unknowingly been tucking into the PS4 version.
If you did pick up either bundle on PS5 when the game launched on November 13, it could be worth double-checking you're enjoying the next-gen version as intended.
Want to know more? Here's our round-up of all of the PS5 upgrade games and upcoming PS5 games. And if you're still on the lookout for a next-gen machine, here's where you can keep track of the PS5 Price.