Gamer's Town

The Battle For Cross-play: Who is in the Lead?

In one of my previous articles, I talked about Sony’s crummy cross-play policy. Basically, Sony has blocked cross play with Nintendo Switch and Xbox One on three popular multiplayer games: Rocket League, Minecraft, and Fortnite (the game which brought the most attention to this debate). This time around, I’m going to be talking about the other contenders. So, for more information about Sony, check out my previous article here.

It is hard to argue that PC isn’t one of the most versatile ways to play with friends on different platforms. I’m going to be using the game Fortnite as an example. If I want to play Fortnite on my PC with my friend who has a PS4, it is entirely possible. If I want to link my PC and PS4 Epic Games account, I will have no trouble. Alternately, the same thing goes for PC and any other platform.


Similarly, mobile players will be able to join just about anyone. The problem lies in connecting this gen’s biggest consoles. PS4 players cannot connect with Nintendo Switch players OR Xbox One players. This doesn’t just affect Fortnite. In fact, it spreads across to another highly played game: Minecraft.


Microsoft and Nintendo Join Forces

A few days ago an update to Nintendo’s version of Minecraft allowed players to connect with others on the Xbox One, PC, and mobile. The best part of all of this is the announcement trailer that was released. For the first time ever an Xbox one controller was shown in a Nintendo switch commercial. In the commercial, there are two people playing together: one on Xbox one and the other on Nintendo Switch.


Nintendo and Microsoft are joining together to throw some serious shade at Sony. Because, while PC players and mobile players can also cross-play with these Minecraft versions, only Xbox one and Nintendo Switch are shown. At the very end of the video the message, “Create together, explore together, survive together” is prominently displayed on Microsoft’s signature green background and Nintendo’s red background. Then, on a black background, it reads “better together.”


While this message seems to be about Minecrafton the surface, it’s really a jab at Sony. Microsoft and Nintendo are basically telling Sony that this is not a divisive community. People want to play together and with today’s technology ,it is more possible than ever. Rivalries aside, at the end of the day what matters is the player not the consumer.


Who’s Winning?

It is very clear from this commercial and Sony’s silence, what matters more to each company. Sony has said nothing about this commercial or their disappointing cross-play policy. Let’s get real here, chances are that people who own the Nintendo Switch also own either an Xbox One, PS4 or a PC. Nintendo creates a very specific type of experience that neither and Xbox One nor PS4 can emulate. But that goes both ways. Each console has their own unique selling point and companies should be doing promotion by highlighting what they can offer as opposed to blocking out communications with other systems. The gaming industry is massive, and it will only keep growing. It would be his mistake for Sony to get too cocky and block potential customers out.


It wouldn’t be a surprise if people started moving to Microsoft or Nintendo for their next gen consoles. Because, with multiplayer becoming more prevalent why should they hold on to an experience that leaves them isolated from their friends?


So, who is really in the lead? Personally, I’d say PC and mobile are soaring above the others. They are the most versatile and aren’t caught up in all of this drama. Though, Nintendo and Microsoft are proving that they are stronger in numbers and it is very obvious that Sony is on the losing end. Fans can only hope that Sony will break their silence and offer a remedy for the problems they’ve caused.


What you think of all this? Let us know in the comments below.