Xbox head Phil Spencer has spoken out about Sony’s explanation for their lack of participation in cross-platform play.
To update those who have missed the story so far, Microsoft have announced that it plans to open up Minecraft to allow cross-platform play for those on Xbox, Android, iOS, VR Headsets and Windows 10 which is a huge leap forward in terms of multiplayer play. Further to this, when Psyonix announced that Rocket League would be heading to the Nintendo Switch, they also announced that the game will support multiplayer across Switch, Mac, Windows, Linux and Xbox One. Sony however, have not indicated that they will join Microsoft and Nintendo in allowing cross-platform play.
Head of global sales and marketing for PlayStation Jim Ryan defended Sony’s position in an interview with Eurogamer. Ryan stated that Sony do not have a “profound philosophical stance” against the idea of cross-platform play but claimed that the prime concern was not being able to guarantee the safety of users on a non-PlayStation platform.
Ryan told Eurogamer:
“We have a contract with the people who go online with us, that we look after them and they are within the PlayStation curated universe. Exposing what in many cases are children to external influences we have no ability to manage or look after, it’s something we have to think about very carefully.”
This explanation didn’t seem to please Mr Spencer and in an interview with Giant Bomb, Spencer indirectly replied to these comments:
“The fact that somebody would kind of make an assertion that somehow we’re not keeping Minecraft players safe, I found — not only from a Microsoft perspective, but from a game industry perspective — like, I don’t know why that has to become the dialogue. Like, that doesn’t seem healthy for anyone.”
He remained professional and diplomatic, not naming names or directly making accusations and went on to say:
“We take the safety of Xbox Live, of our players across all of our games — inside of Minecraft, obviously an incredibly important part of that — it’s incredibly important to our team. We would never put Minecraft in a place where we felt like […] we weren’t keeping our players safe.”
This a positive step for gaming overall but it is a shame that Sony look like they will not be participating. It is still early day and things may well change when cross-platform play becomes a reality. How do you feel about the comments? Are you looking forward to taking on players on other platforms? Let us know on Twitter or in the comments section below!