Microsoft said that Sony is blocking cross-platform play between the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One for Fortnite, a story that gamers have heard at least twice before.
Fortnite recently surpassed fellow Battle Royale-inspired multiplayer shooter PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds on Twitch in terms of popularity. The game is available on the PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC, and soon also on mobile devices.
Sony Blocks 'Fortnite' Cross-Play For PS4, Xbox One
Epic Games recently announced that it was working to bring Fortnite: Battle Royale to iOS and Android devices and that the mobile version of the game will be the same as what players enjoy on the PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Mac.
The Fortnite mobile version will also be offering cross-play support between the PlayStation 4, PC, and Mac, leaving out the Xbox One.
It can be remembered that Fortnite accidentally enabled cross-platform play between the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One last year. It was the first game that allowed PlayStation 4 and Xbox One players to meet up with one another in online matches, even if it was a mistake. However, more importantly, the error proved that cross-play between the two consoles was possible.
Microsoft is again pushing to allow cross-play between the Xbox Live Gold and PlayStation Plus online gaming networks. However, Sony again is reportedly blocking the feature.
Both Xbox boss Phil Spencer and Epic Games have expressed interest in allowing PlayStation 4 and Xbox One gamers to play together on Fortnite. However, when a Microsoft representative was asked on the topic of cross-platform play, it was obvious who was being pinned as the reason why it still does not exist between the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One.
"We've worked closely with Nintendo to allow cross-network play between Xbox One and Switch and our offer to do the same with PlayStation players still holds," the spokesperson said.
'Rocket League,' 'Minecraft,' And 'Fortnite'
This is not the first time that Sony has ignored Microsoft's requests for cross-play. In July 2016, Rocket League developer Psyonix said that work to enable cross-platform play between the Xbox One and PlayStation 4 was complete and that it only needed approval from Sony to activate the feature. The approval never came.
Then in September 2017, the Better Together update for Minecraft rolled out cross-play support between most major platforms, but of course, the PlayStation 4 was not included in the list.
The reason why Sony keeps blocking the requests for cross-platform play between the PlayStation 4 and the Xbox One is because it simply has no incentive to do so. There are more PlayStation 4 units in out there than Xbox One units, and by preventing cross-platform play, gamers choose to buy the PlayStation 4 so that they have more friends to play with compared to purchasing the Xbox One.
It remains to be seen what would make Sony finally give in and enable cross-platform play between the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. Will it be the continued rise in popularity of Fortnite? Will it be the dominance of the Nintendo Switch in the video game market? Or will absolutely nothing change Sony's mind?