When Epic Games released Fortnite back in July, it did not announce that PC/console cross-play would be enabled, but it didn’t take players long to figure it out. What was more surprising was that cross-play was allowed between PC and PlayStation 4.
Sony has been stuck in the mud regarding allowing cross-platform play between consoles, but seemed relaxed a little bit when it came to the PC since it is not a direct competitor.
The home gaming giant has denied cross-platform play on games like Minecraft and Rocket League even though developers say it would be easy for them to add the feature. Apparently, enabling the feature is so easy that Epic accidentally allowed cross-play between PS4 and Xbox One players for a couple of hours last weekend.
According to players on Reddit, XBONE and PS4 players were intermingling for a little while last Saturday. It was discovered when redditor PRE_-CISION-_ found himself being killed by a player with a strange name.
PRE_-CISION-_ (a PS4 player) says that a player going by the handle “zCypher Nine” killed him in a Battle Royale match. He noticed that the gamer tag contained a space, which is odd because spaces are not allowed in PlayStation Network user names. Searching for the player on PSN turned up no results. PRE_-CISION-_ decided to try looking for the player on his XB1 just for the heck of it and sure enough found him.
Around this same time, another Reddit user posted a picture of himself and his son playing Fortnite side-by-side on PS4 and XB1 respectively ( shown below). There can be no doubt that cross-platform play was occurring between the PlayStation 4 and the Xbox One, at least for a little while.
In an email with Kotaku, Epic Games stated, "We had a configuration issue and it has now been corrected."
More accurately, once developers realized Xbox and PlayStation cross-play was enabled, they quickly turned it off.
Epic only did what it had to do to keep Sony off its back, but it raises the question: when is Sony going to layoff and just allow cross-platform play already?
It is apparently already a configurable feature in the backend of the Fortnite servers, and probably others as well. However, Sony continues to pretend that they are open to “discussions” for developing cross-play games, while denying any attempts or requests to allow it.
Now that PS4 gamers know that it works with the flick of a virtual switch, the ball is in Sony's court. Will it finally make a growing portion of its user base happy with a highly requested element, or will it continue to drag its feet and make excuses even though fans now have proof that the feature is already built-in to at least one game?