In the last months the crossplay is one of the topics that have given more to talk about in the video game industry; and is not for less, since the idea of being able to play with our friends regardless of platform barriers is something exciting.
The good thing is that everything seems to indicate that this feature could be present in more titles since Microsoft is open to working with anyone who wants to implement crossplay.
In a recent interview with VG247, Mike Ybarra, vice president of the gaming platforms on Xbox and Windows, has said that crossplay seems important because it makes players happy. “It’s more about gamer choice, more about making an IP on our platform last longer. I don’t care about where they play, I just want people to have fun playing games because that’s just better for the industry.”
Later, Ybarra said that over the years the demands of the players have changed and now the ability to play with friends from other platforms seems to be important. Given that their goal is to satisfy their customers, at Microsoft they are willing to talk to other companies to get it. “We totally agree with that. If any developer wants to have that conversation… Valve is right down the street from us, Nintendo is too – they’re like a block from us. We’re having these discussions as developers come up, and we’re completely open to that.”
As you know, with the Better Together update for Minecraft, Microsoft worked for hand in hand with Nintendo so that, once it is available, Minecraft players on Xbox One can play with those of the Nintendo Switch. This update will also include crossplay with PCs and mobiles, but not with PlayStation 4.
Finally, Ybarra emphasized the importance that Psyonix and Rocket League had in bringing the crossplay theme to the table. “I think Rocket League was the first developer that came to us saying ‘we want to make this onto everything’. At the time they weren’t on Switch, they are now, but they were saying let’s do this… we sat down and said absolutely, we should totally do that.”
Several weeks ago, Ybarra noted that the number of players who want to crossplay is very large, so they doubt that it is something that players will stop asking in the future. Having said that, the task of implementing it has not been easy since Sony’s response has been negative, but fortunately, they are still negotiating to try to reach an agreement.