Top
630°

Sony really hated PS4 crossplay, confidential documents reveal

Emails reveal tense exchanges between Epic Games and Sony.

Update:

According to Tom Warren:
Epic CEO Tim Sweeney just confirmed that Sony is the only platform holder that requires Epic to pay compensation for crossplay.

Read Full Story >>
theverge.com
Obscure_Observer6d ago

Now, according to Tom Warren, we have a confirmation from Time Sweeney himself.

https://twitter.com/tomwarr...

solideagle6d ago (Edited 6d ago )

I think Sony should at least do it with PC. My friends play on PC and it would be cool to play games like Monster hunter or any multiplayer game with them.
I think crossplay should be across any device and can be turned on/off in my humble opinion. It's a great feature and should be in all multiplat/multiplayer games

SullysCigar5d ago (Edited 5d ago )

It honestly makes no difference to me, but I can understand why others might care.

This article is duplicating the one one the front page of N4G right now - from 6 hours prior. Same emails, same revelation. What's the point in that?

https://n4g.com/news/241538...

Aussiesummer5d ago

Just not pc where everyone mods and cheats.

MADGameR5d ago

So they are going to weaken the PlayStation platform to appease an audience of platform owners that can't even pass 1 million sold on HZD... yea..

Father__Merrin5d ago

I think it's a good idea for the bigger titles like COD but it's best if it's ps5 & xbox crossplay

thorstein5d ago

I only want crossplay with Xbox and Nintendo. I am sick of aimbotting, wallhacking PC players. Sorry. This is what SONY had a problem with in the beginning.

I play COD or BF and the cheaters aren't even trying to hide it anymore. Go to the lobby and surprise 97% of them are PC players.

+ Show (2) more repliesLast reply 5d ago
Orchard6d ago

And also confirmation that it’s still in place in 2021, shocking.

5d ago
RauLeCreuset5d ago

Shocking? I find it shocking that you find it shocking. You were the one who said this to me 10 days ago when you were trying to portray PSVR as a failure.

"Also I hate to break this to you but... that's how companies determine success - revenue generated."

"This statement just shows you have no understanding of how corporations with shareholders function... you're probably one of these people who think the big corporations are your friend. Shareholders, and by extension, corporations, directly determine success as revenue, market share & growth."

It's shocking that you're now shocked that PS has a policy in place to protect its revenue. I wonder what changed.

Orchard5d ago (Edited 5d ago )

@darklion What are “Xbox people”? People made of Xboxes? Interesting.

No one cares? Apparently you do ;)

@RauLeCreuset And my statement is still correct and accurate today. Just because I recognize that corporations are just out to make money, doesn’t mean I support them ripping off gamers or developers/publishers. Those things aren’t mutually exclusive.

As a dev, I’ve worked on crossplay games and never knew we may have been paying Sony for it (I guess that is more on the publishing side than development side anyway) but it does shock me that they would effectively be charging for such a trivial feature which is no work on their part.

In actual fact, they save money when we do crossplay because we can’t use most PSN services anymore like matchmaking and sessions etc and have to go find a 3rd party solution.

They’re probably going to reverse that decision if Apple gets nailed in court though, since what Sony are doing is even worse - they’re profiting from other platforms that have zero cost to them.

5d ago
Orchard5d ago

So PM me and I’ll send you the proof you want. Easy enough to prove.

5d ago
Orchard5d ago

Well you sort of have to tell me what you want as proof lol.

Sent you a PM asking.

5d ago
Orchard5d ago (Edited 5d ago )

I've offered you next-gen devkit pictures with a customized hand-written message of your choice. I'm waiting on you accepting it. That is more than enough proof of being a dev - unless you're about to tell me I can buy next-gen devkits in Walmart.

https://i.imgur.com/fCFOCeM...

RauLeCreuset5d ago

"And my statement is still correct and accurate today. Just because I recognize that corporations are just out to make money, doesn’t mean I support them..."

Okay. So why is it shocking? I didn't say you supported it. I found it shocking you find it shocking based on your recent comments about revenue.

"In actual fact, they save money when we do crossplay because we can’t use most PSN services anymore like matchmaking and sessions etc and have to go find a 3rd party solution."

In actual fact, Tim Sweeny referred to it as "compensation" and the revenue share document states it's "to offset the reduction in (Sony's) revenue." Compensation isn't automatic either. It's triggered based on a formula to determine if Sony isn't receiving enough revenue based on the players they bring to the game.

Orchard5d ago

@RauLeCreuset

Shocking because I was unaware of it, and I'm shocked that companies, especially big ones like Epic, went along with it - especially when other platforms do not mandate such revenue sharing of cross-play 'content'.

Yes, compensation is triggered based on a formula. But what right does Sony have to revenue generated on another platform/device? None. That is worse than Apple charging 30% for items sold through their store... Sony are effectively charging a % for items sold through an external store on another device which they have nothing to do with. It's unrealistic to assume that because Fortnite exists on Switch/Xbox, people are suddenly going to start buying everything there while playing on PS, especially since the items are priced the same.

Sony surely must realize they are the next likely target for Epic once they're done with Apple...

RauLeCreuset5d ago

It's not based on an assumption. That's why they came up with the formula. Other platforms aren't doing it with Fortnite because PS is the one that stands to lose. They had to make it right for PS to get everyone onboard. PS isn't going to build the bigger customer base and open it up so some other company can come in and take their sale using their customers.

"Sony surely must realize they are the next likely target for Epic once they're done with Apple..."

It looks like Sony was the 1st target of Epic from the exchanges.

+ Show (9) more repliesLast reply 5d ago
travestyj5d ago (Edited 5d ago )

This is also very misleading and so is the update by the mods. Sony doesn't make anyone pay for cross play. They made a deal with Epic that if a person plays Fortnite mostly on Playstation but buys most of their Vbucks elsewhere that Sony is compensated. This was so Epic didn't make it cheaper to buy vbucks elsewhere so Sony gets no cut from Playstation players.

This is because 47% of the revenue generated from Fortnite came from Playstation players and Epic earned $9 billion in revenue from Fortnite in its first two years. Sony would lose tons of money otherwise.

mkis0075d ago (Edited 5d ago )

Ya it is quite clever actually, someone could theoretically play the game for free on playstation 100% of the time and only buy stuff for the game via their phone versions store, meaning sony is housing the players but getting none of the fees from those purchases. What is their incentive to play ball in this case? This revenue sharing makes it so that in the case where someone spend their money elsewhere, sony still gets rewarded for being the platform the player wants to play on.

Sorry for the repeat of what you said, I just had to say it in my own words.

travestyj5d ago

Yes thank you for understanding. I find everywhere else I go on the internet everyone else is misunderstanding what is actually happening here and think Sony is directly charging developers to allow cross play. Warren's purposely misleading tweet certainly don't help.

Chocoburger5d ago

Ah, so basically Sony listened to the fans clamoring for cross play. In order for that to occur, they made an intelligent business deal so that they don't lose revenue, which is completely logical and acceptable for them to do. But now people are trying to spin this in a negative way.

Lots of idiots on Twitter trying to make Sony come across poorly in light of this. Losers.

D3TH_D33LR5d ago

Someone gets it. Crossplay meant less profits guaranteed for Sony. Anyone against this was already against Sony and clearly has zero business comprehension

Mulando5d ago (Edited 5d ago )

This is not how it works. The Vbucks you buy are bound to a system. E.g. if you buy vbucks on switch, you only have them on the switch. If you buy them on playstation you have them on playstation, ....
All that to not compensate other companies. Only vbucks that you have unlocked ingame are available on all systems.

+ Show (2) more repliesLast reply 5d ago
5d ago
gamer78045d ago (Edited 5d ago )

Yah it’s a shame I wish Sony would put players first. Then the money will come.

+ Show (2) more repliesLast reply 5d ago
RazzerRedux6d ago

“In certain circumstances Epic will have to pay additional revenue to Sony,” said Sweeney. “If somebody were primarily playing on PlayStation, but paying on iPhone then this might trigger compensation.”

lol....in certain very specific circumstances.

Obscure_Observer6d ago (Edited 6d ago )

"lol....in certain very specific circumstances."

Very specific yes, like: "protect our children"

"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."

Seems legit. /S

RazzerRedux6d ago

That was a silly thing for Ryan to say. I think the world collectively rolled their eyes at that one. This was always about positioning and money. Same for everyone involved.

5d ago
iplay1up26d ago

Cross play benefits GAMERS! I honestly am beginning to think Xbox IS about gamers. I LOVE my PS4, and the exclusives. Microsoft. Made some HUGE mistakes, but seems to be trying to turn it around. Microsoft released games on Switch for goodness sake.

Aquafiniac6d ago (Edited 6d ago )

Lmaooo I love my Xbox more then any console but the way you talk about MS makes me think you work for them... MS has a lot of catching up to do and a lot of redeeming to do.
If they can keep this up then I will believe in them again but just because they have become more “friendly” doesn’t mean I think they are for gamers..
They are in the stage of trying to win back gamers.
Sony did that last gen and now they are starting to get cocky and thinking they are invincible. Hopefully Ms doesn’t go back to its original self.

LordoftheCritics6d ago

Those are things anyone would do to save face.

My Xbox one has been a Netflix box for years now. Years. YEARS. Thats what they wanted in the first place and they got it.

RosweeSon6d ago

Time to sell up you can do that on your phone 😜✌🏻🤣

RosweeSon6d ago

They also wanted cross play as majority of their customers jumped ship. If it was 360 days or they’d kept their market share they wouldn’t be crossover playing or sharing nothing. 😑🥱🤣✌&# 127995;

JEECE5d ago

MS actively prevented crossplay during the 360 era: https://kotaku.com/i-saw-th...

The company with the largest playerbase will always be against crossplay, because the draw of "my friends all have console X, so I need to buy console X to play online with them" has been one of the primary drivers of console sales for 15 years. Why would the company that has that advantage want to give it up for free?

The difference is that when MS does it, they get a pass, but when Sony does it, the games media and influencers start up a hate campaign to pressure them.

RedDevils5d ago

lol are you trying to convince yourself that xbox is for gamers?

RauLeCreuset5d ago

MS was making money off of their Fortnite players because they kept F2P behind a paywall. Want to play Fortnite on Xbox? Pay for Live. Not the case with Sony. They were reliant on getting their cut from Fortnite's microtransactions and had the bigger customer base, accounting for 40% of Fortnite's revenue. Pushing for Fortnite cross-play meant that Xbox benefited from PS4's player base to bolster their lobbies and nullify the incentive many have to buy the system their friends game on, and it was also to Xbox's benefit for PS4's Fortnite players to be able to jump on another platform, possibly Xbox, and spend money on Fortnite, cutting PS out of the microtransaction revenue that would otherwise have gone to them. Those moves are about money and strengthening their position in the market by weakening the competition. But they put some nice "about gamers" spin on it.

Darkborn5d ago

Then why didn't xbox allow cross play with playstation when they asked for it in the ps3 Gen? Because Microsoft was raking in cash and didn't need it. Same with Sony now. They have over half the market share so why implement something to help a struggling rival?

JEECE5d ago

The difference is no one started a hate campaign against MS because PS3 players couldn't play against 360 players on COD, but when it was Xbox players at a disadvantage, it suddenly became the biggest deal in the games industry.

mike32UK5d ago

They are because they have to be. They don't have the big hitting games or the larger chunk of the market share...

Napoca75d ago

Yeah the f2p paywall by Microsoft shows what's for gamers.
Without failing to double the Xbox love price, it wouldnt haven been free now.)
Also they pushes crossplay hard, because they were loosing hard!
And so on

yeahokwhatever5d ago

almost every single person working in games wants gamers to enjoy their work. almost everyone. microsoft, sony, nintendo, and allllll of the other game companies. that said, crossplay has positives AND negative, and its important to consider both. moderating, performance, gameplay advantages, and cheating are all legitimate problems that crossplay introduces. platforms (especially leading ones) have a lot to lose if any of these problems get out of control on their platform they worked 25+ years to build.

RosweeSon4d ago

*seems, let’s see how they actually get on with that first ey. Great Microsoft released games for switch but unfortunately that isn’t their console so what are all their owners gonna do, buy a switch 🤷🏻‍♂️🤦 🏻‍♂️🤣✌🏻

+ Show (7) more repliesLast reply 4d ago
WelkinCole6d ago

Don't blame them. When the shoe was on the other foot MS turned down Sony's request in the PS3 era and you know what? No PS3 fans cared. No support from xbox fans either.

Suddenly last gen MS saw the light and xbox fans would not stop bitching about it.

Even now I still don't give a shit about cross platform gaming. Sure its the same for many PS fans.

NotoriousWhiz6d ago

I also didn't care about 4k 15 years ago. Does that mean that we still shouldn't care about 4k? Should we just keep doing everything like we always did? I wrote down passwords for plenty of games back in the day, I didn't need any system memory to remember the last thing I did. If I accidentally wrote O as 0, then I would just start over. Times change, quality of life improves. There are no negatives to cross platform play (as long as you can choose not to use it), so why not?

r2oB6d ago

Perhaps the reason you didn’t care about 4K 15 years ago was because 4K displays weren’t a thing 15 years ago. It’s kind of like people 200 years ago didn’t care about cars. Fact of the matter is when Xbox user base was comparable to PlayStation, Microsoft had no interest because playing with your friends is a selling point of a console and Xbox Live; now that PlayStation’s user base is more than double of course Microsoft wants access to it.

Personally I’m indifferent to cross play, but it is a nice feature for those who would utilize it. But I understand why, as businesses, Microsoft is championing cross play and Sony not so much. At the end of the day it’s about money for both companies.

knightedHollow6d ago (Edited 6d ago )

No negatives you say? Id say adding to the pool of 8 years olds is a negative. Id say having to work on cross platform optimization is a negative at least resource wise. Id say companies deciding to connect everything through them so they can better gather our data is a negative...or at least simply annoying.

In terms of what you cared about? Well im pretty sure you cared about graphics right? That was the thing back then. On PC it might have been 1080p that was a thing... The "thing" changes but the general subject stays the same. Better image quality and graphics. Thats always been a thing. Crossplay??? not so much. Crossbuy absolutely is a thing.

aaronaton5d ago

That could be one of the worst analogies i've read on here for a long time.

RauLeCreuset5d ago

"There are no negatives to cross platform play (as long as you can choose not to use it), so why not?"

That's incorrect. As clearly indicated by the documents and confirmed by Epic, Sony had to be compensated because they stood to lose revenue from the deal. People talk about $70 games, Days Gone 2, and restructuring Japan studio. They don't like to think so much on what may have precipitated it. I don't think those things were affected by cross-play, but what I am saying, and have been saying for years, is that the home console model relies on a closed ecosystem. More revenue makes it easier to invest, take a chance, or justify making less money elsewhere. Letting that revenue go to other platforms by opening up the closed system would have had a ripple effect that likely would have been felt by PS gamers.

1Victor5d ago

@ notorious
Read above welkinCole comment summarized it well
“ Don't blame them. When the shoe was on the other foot MS turned down Sony's request in the PS3 era and you know what? No PS3 fans cared. No support from xbox fans either.

Suddenly last gen MS saw the light and xbox fans would not stop bitching about it. ”
To that I would ask why is Microsoft quiet about cross play on the start of this generation? Could it be that they think they’ll dominate this generation and don’t need it?
Mark my words if Sony gets too far ahead of Microsoft this generation you’ll see them pushing hard for cross play again.
Personally I got nothing against cross play what I don’t like is the two face mask of let’s do cross play because we have lower player base then when they have big players base don’t want it and viceversa DO THE DAMN THING AT THE START OF THE GENERATION if it’s that important to you or STFU about it

NotoriousWhiz5d ago (Edited 5d ago )

@RauLeCreuset

"That's incorrect. As clearly indicated by the documents and confirmed by Epic, Sony had to be compensated because they stood to lose revenue from the deal."

That's not cross play. That's cross buy, which is a whole separate thing. Sony was concerned about people buying things on one platform and using them on another. That's completely different from someone buying things on one platform and playing with someone on another. That's probably why Sony/Epic didn't support cross progression on PS4 at first for Fortnite. Anything bought on PlayStation, stayed on PlayStation.

@knightedHollow

"The "thing" changes but the general subject stays the same. Better image quality and graphics. Thats always been a thing. Crossplay??? not so much. Crossbuy absolutely is a thing."

1st: Crossbuy is only a thing when the parent company is the same (i.e PS4 / Vita). Buying something on Xbox, doesn't grant you rights to the same thing on Steam.

2nd: For those that play online, a large active community has always been a "thing". So cross play, just makes that large active community even larger and more active. As you say, the "thing" changes, but the general subject stays the same.

@1Victor

"To that I would ask why is Microsoft quiet about cross play on the start of this generation? Could it be that they think they’ll dominate this generation and don’t need it?"

Same reason why most companies are quiet about the ability to save games. It's pretty much implied at this point for most games. Besides that, everyone is playing ball, so there really is nothing to say about it.

RauLeCreuset5d ago

@Notorious

"That's not cross play. That's cross buy, which is a whole separate thing. Sony was concerned about people buying things on one platform and using them on another. That's completely different from someone buying things on one platform and playing with someone on another.""

Cross play and cross buy are different things, but you responded to a Fortnite article, and that distinction flew out the window long ago when talking about Fortnite. People popularly refer to cross buy and cross progression as cross play when talking about Fortnite. I only draw the distinction when necessary.

You're drawing it now, but the popular habit of lumping cross buy and cross progression under the cross play umbrella is a negative for cross play. It's how we got to the point of people expecting cross progression and cross buy. The pressure campaign against PS used cross play as a launch point to pressure them on cross buy and cross progression. Look no further than Phil Spencer's 2020 comments:

“You should be able to play with the people you want to play with And if we can support that, and we can be advocates and champions for that, great. Tim Sweeney has been out there pushing hard on this. We think cross play, cross progression, cross buy are things that people should be able to expect in this year with the digital currencies and economies that are out there, but yeah, I feel really good that cross place growing in popularity. I still don’t see it everywhere, so the battle is not won.”

https://gamingbolt.com/cros...

NotoriousWhiz5d ago

@RauLeCreuset

I think we agree with each other on that point. Cross play is good, cross buy / cross progression may or may not be depending on the details.

+ Show (5) more repliesLast reply 5d ago
fewDankMemes6d ago

Online gaming 15 years ago is nowhere close to what it is today dude.

TheDibbler6d ago

You are looking at this like both of these companies are people. Both of these companies have had different leadership over the years. The leadership at Sony at the time were more open to it during that era than Microsoft was but leadership has changed several times for both companies. Each has their own philosophy in regards to crossplay among other things.

Stop looking at this from the fanboy perspective and just look at crossplay as a concept. It is a good concept that benefits gamers and you should want both companies to support this.

RazzerRedux6d ago (Edited 6d ago )

The leadership at the time were taking the position that served their corporation best at the time. There was no advantage for Microsoft to allow PS3-360 cross play and so they said no. With Xbox One, that changed and suddenly Microsoft was pro-crossplay.

Either way, the problem we see here has to do with the microtransactions. If someone buys a skin on their iPhone but that same skin is available through Sony on PSN as well, does Sony have to give them that skin on PSN for free? Sony wanted to make certain they were compensated and Epic eventually agreed. So these corporations did what corporations do quite often: they made a deal.

@WelkinCole

To be accurate, Sony never "requested" cross play with Microsoft. Kotaku saw it happen in a game and asked Microsoft about it. Microsoft said they would not allow it.

You can read the whole story here:
https://kotaku.com/i-saw-th...

YS15005d ago

@Razzer
What you said is true but I also think folks forget that also during that time Sony's PSN was an unsecure raging dumpster fire, as such I wouldn't have allowed any connection with PSN and XBOX live were I in MS's position either. (I was one of the lucky ones dealing with my personal information hacked from PSN back then)

gamer78045d ago (Edited 5d ago )

@razzer. Totally different leadership with different Visions. That’s the real reason, the change In leadership and how they view gaming.

RazzerRedux5d ago (Edited 5d ago )

@gamer7804

No, the vision is exactly the same. It is about their view on how to make more money. Same as Sony and Nintendo.

Why did Phil try to raise XLG prices again?

+ Show (1) more replyLast reply 5d ago
RosweeSon6d ago

Agreed when you got 110 million gamers to choose from it’s not too hard to find a match 🤣🙌🏻 28540; joking aside tho cannot agree more they’ve done it as a last resort because they haven’t got much choice. People were jumping ship their paying online numbers aren’t as good as peak 360 days so because they’ve lost half their customers they trying to be the good guy. That they really weren’t during 360 days it’s funny how that old karma works out 😑🤭🤷 27995;‍♂️🤣 they want cross play because they need it same they wanted BC because they needed it they’ve lacked games all last gen it’s still barren what’s easy and cheap way to get lots of games on your consoles just allow all your? Old ones. Microsoft’s BC is the worst of the big 3 by a long shot even Segas is better and they not had a console for 20 years 🤣✌🏻🤓 great console tho it’s so fast and runs so smooth… whilst playing 10-15 year old gsmes 🤣🤣 I’d hardly expect slowdown on my switch playing NES games I can’t imagine there is any on series X playing 360 games or older not what I’d spend £450 going next generation on tho. Haven’t even launched a halo or a forza yet shiiii 😅🤣🔜 28284;

YS15004d ago

The 90's called, they want their wall of emojis back. Other than that, after deciphering the rant, can I have a hit of whatever it is you're smoking?

Suave_Langosta5d ago

Gaming eco systems have changed since then. Clearly you and 35 people are blinded by fanboyism.

You realize gaming and online gaming since ps3 / 360 days is almost night and day. And most crosss play is implemented in a way that you can toggle it on and off so again, blinded by a color and brand.

Cross play is and will always been the best path for gamers, say what you will but in the end how is it ever bad to limit a players choice? Here’s a hint, it never is. Microsoft was dumb when they said no, Sony was being dumb as well.

Players choice is capital above alll but not offering it and saying it’s impossible is a bad look when it clearly was a flip of a switch to allow it. So I look down on any company trying to act that way.

Notellin5d ago

The best thing this industry could do is make zero progress. Glad you're on it.

InUrFoxHole5d ago

@WelkinCole
Piss N moan about options... well played sir!

+ Show (4) more repliesLast reply 4d ago
Silly gameAr6d ago

Are we going to get into this crossplay bs again? How has crossplay TRULY benefited anyone? No one even talks or cares about it, unless it's something that makes Sony look like trash.