Sony Finally Tests the Cross-Play Waters with Extended Fortnite Beta
The lines between consoles is finally starting to blur. Though Microsoft and Nintendo have played nice within the last couple years, Sony has remained the only kid on the block refusing to share. Starting last week, that all begins to change as PlayStation finally begins to open up cross-play across platforms.
In an official blog post from Sony Entertainment, an extended Fortnite cross-play beta finally launched, opening the doors for PlayStation owners can finally play with gamers across different platforms. In fact, this doesn’t just extend to Xbox and Nintendo, but to the greater breadth of Windows, Mac, Android, and iOS as well.
This is a huge deal for Sony. Currently standing as essentially the leader of the current console generation, they were extremely resilient to opening the doors into other systems, stating they simply believed the PlayStation experience was the best and safest way to play. However, that began to change as games like Rocket League, Fortnite, and Minecraft began to experiment with this functionality; first within Microsoft’s ecosystem, followed by collaboration with Nintendo. In a world where consoles no longer limit players from only playing games with friends on the same system, a more integrated experience across platforms becomes a prominent conversation.
After months of discussion, Sony Interactive Entertainment finally confirmed they will begin opening the gates, using Fortnite as the experiment. As stated in the official post, “We see the beta as an opportunity to conduct thorough testing that ensures cross-platform play is best on PlayStation, while being mindful about the user experience from both a technical and social perspective.”
Though they are still deciding whether this trend will continue for SIE in the future, they did emphasize that this change, “represents a major policy change for SIE, and we are now in the planning process across the organization to support this change. We will update the community once we have more details to share, including… what this means for other titles going forward.”
TGC’s Thoughts: I suspect they are using Fortnite as a testing ground to see how cross-play will impact their overall sales. If growth drops for the company across platform and software sales, they will likely pull back on future titles. Of course, if it exceeds their expectations, players can anticipate other titles opening the gates, such as the popular Rocket League. But what do you think of the major policy change? Are you excited PlayStation is opening the floodgates? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!