Sony had been very stubborn about enabling cross-play between consoles for quite a while. So it was a surprise to me and many others when Sony announced a beta program allowing Fortnite players on PS4 to play with others across Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, Mobile, PC, and MAC.
Shawn Layden, Chairman of PlayStation Worldwide Studios, recently discussed the decision to allow console cross-play and why took a little bit longer to arrive on the latest episode of the PlayStation Blogcast episode 308. He stated:
“This is something we know about, we know this is a want, this is a desire. And we want to deliver that in the best way possible. Now enabling cross-play isn’t just a flip of a switch and there you go. It’s a very multi-dimensional attribute or feature. So we had to look at it from a technical point of view, we had to look at it with our partners from a business point of view. We have to make sure if we enable this do we have the right customer service support? Do we have the right messaging out there? It’s rather ordinal. Everything has to go in a certain order to get them all set up and that’s why it has taken us longer certainly than what I would have wanted. But it took us longer than what it was going to take to get it ready and get it done which is why we were able to not only able to announce it this past Tuesday, but enable it at the same time.”
It seems as if there were many working parts that had to align together for this magical moment in online gaming to happen. It also seems that Shawn Layden is excited about this achievement and hopefully will lead to something bigger down the line.
Of course, now we all just want to know where Sony and Xbox take this new cross-play friendship. Will we see this for Fallout 76? Battlefield V? Black Ops 4? If I was a betting man, I would have to say that it is still too early for that to happen, but I am still hopeful.
Fortnite is available for free on PS4, Xbox One, Switch, iOs, Android, PC, and Mac.