Foreward: I would like to extend a massive thank you to Pan-hime (@regularpanties on Twitter) for graciously providing me with a firmware 6.72 PS4 so that I can test and verify the following procedures myself, in addition to modding this game. Thanks to her, there is now a Persona 5 Royal section on the site, as well as P5R support for the Mod Compendium & In-Game Mod Menu.
To get started, the following are required.
- A Playstation 4 on firmware 6.72; no higher, no lower.
To upgrade to it from a lower firmware, see this guide.
To downgrade– you can’t, sorry. 🙁
- An FPKG (Fake PKG) of Persona 5 Royal (JP). Sorry, you’ll have to find this yourself.
This is required to install the game to dump files from and to create custom updates. The English version is not dumpable/playable on a modded firmware yet.
- A Windows PC.
This is for running the software to mod/extract the game’s files and to produce an update PKG.
- An External USB Flash Storage Device. This could be a hard drive, flash drive etc. for storing and transferring dumped data from PS4.
- Mod Compendium version 1.5. With this program you can easily manage mods and build new PKG files to send to the PS4.
Hacking the PS4
To run fake packages, you need to be running HEN, which is a framework that allows unsigned code to boot on the PS4. You can think of it like Henkaku on the Vita. This relies on a webkit exploit (a bug in the PS4’s browser) which has been patched after 6.72. Since 6.72 also has a kernel exploit, the web exploit allows you to use homebrew apps that can decrypt and play unsigned copies of games– including fake update patches, which is what we will use to mod the game.
There are a couple ways of exploiting the firmware– set a custom DNS to point your internet traffic to the exploit page, or host it yourself over the local network. Either one is very easy:
Setting a Custom DNS
- On the PS4, go to Settings > Network > Setup internet.
- Choose Wi-fi or ethernet, then Custom Setup.
- Choose Automatic IP address settings & Do Not Specify DHCP Hostname.
- For DNS settings, choose Manual and set the following:
- Primary DNS: 220.127.116.11
- Secondary DNS: 18.104.22.168
- Complete connection test and go Settings > User’s Guide. It should instantly open the exploit page in your browser.
Self-Hosting the Exploit
- Download the PS4 Exploit Host .exe for Windows here: (x64 for 64-bit systems / x86 for 32-bit )
- Run ps4-exploit-host.exe and note the IP address it displays.
- In the DNS Settings, like shown above, set your PC’s IP as the Primary and Secondary DNS.
- Go to the web browser and type in your PC’s IP.
Once in the browser, simply choose 6.72 and then HEN to start the exploit. Wait for it to say Press Circle to exit and do so (if you wait too long the browser/PS4 may crash). You will then see a series of messages reassuring you that the exploit was successful.
If the exploit fails or the system becomes unresponsive or crashes, you will have to hold down the power button until it turns off and try again. This may take a couple tries since the exploit isn’t completely stable.
Each time this happens, there is a small chance the storage may be corrupted (if it’s being accessed mid-crash/power cycle), which will be checked automatically at boot. Worst case scenario, if this happens, you will have to reinstall everything on the PS4 so be sure to back up important stuff before modding!
Ideally, you’ll want to stay on Firmware 6.72 to continue modding, so you’ll want to do everything you can to avoid Sony’s automatic firmware updates. When using the custom DNS, it should block Sony’s servers (which will prevent you from using PSN, but also prevent updates). If you’re self-hosting, you’ll either have to have your PC running ps4-exploit-host.exe on the same network the entire time you use your PS4, or block updates via the router that the PS4 is connected to. Here is a list of URLs to block.
For extra safety, you can go to Settings > System > Automatic Downloads and uncheck everything. This should help prevent the system from downloading anything without your consent, but it’s still best to block updates via your network to be extra sure.
Dumping the Game
The next step is how we’re going to get our decrypted game files onto PC for editing. Attach your USB storage device to any USB port on the PS4 and navigate to 6.72 > Dumper. Make sure nothing else is running first.
Back out of the browser once you get a welcome message from the dumper and start the game. Leave it running in the background until the PS4 automatically restarts. This will signal that the dump is complete. You can then remove the hard drive, attach it to PC and transfer the files over from the newly created CUSA08644-app folder. There should also be an empty CUSA08644.complete file outside the folder.
Like most Persona games, the files are contained in CriWare CPK archives. dataR.cpk and ps4R.cpk are the main ones you want, and maybe ps4_movieR.cpk if you want the cutscenes. playgoR.cpk is full of duplicate files (for digital installation purposes) and is pointless to extract.
You can use this tool to fully extract the files from each CPK.
Just like any other game, mods will show up in the Persona 5 Royal section. Activate them by checking the box and hit Build to produce a new update PKG for your PS4. You can also create a new mod by clicking the New button and filling out relevant information.
Before you can proceed, you need to supply the path to the full game’s PKG in the Settings tab. This is required to produce a working update PKG. The Mod Compendium will automatically compress your files into a new patch1R.cpk and package it into a new PKG file.
Sending the PKG to PS4
Although you can just install your update PKG the same way as the following homebrew, using it may make it more convenient for you to mod the game without constantly swapping your USB hard drive between the PC and PS4.
The PS4 PKG Sender can send the newly created update PKG from your PC to the PS4, and automatically install it. Afterwards, simply run the game with HEN to see the results. Note that you must install node.js to use it.
Place remote_pkg_installer.pkg on the root of your USB device, connect it to PS4 and (after running HEN) navigate to Settings > Debug Settings > Package Installer and choose the PKG.
Run the homebrew after it shows up next to your games and apps. Make sure you’re connected to the same network (note your PS4’s IP address found in the Settings > Network > Connection Status menu).
Enter that IP in the program, drag your modded PKG into it and hit Send. It may take a couple tries, usually works best for me if I right click the PKG name and hit Send All.
In about no time flat, the update should install and you can go check out the results! If you have any issues with this process, don’t be afraid to drop a query in our Questions & Answers forum. Likewise, be sure to share any mods you create for P5R in our Mod Showcase section!