Multiplayer is a huge selling point in video games, even more so than the classic single player mode… Many popular video games out right now, such as Fortnite and Overwatch, are entirely multiplayer-orientated, and contain practically no offline single player mode at all…
While I may talk about this certain predicament in another post sometime in the near future, there is however something else about online video games which came to my mind recently and I wanted to share with you, my wonderful readers… and that is cross play.
So, what is cross play? Well, cross-platform play, as it’s officially known as, is when multiple game platforms play the same video game online; basically, to put it straight, gamers can play on the same online server no matter if they are using a PC, a PS4 or an Xbox One to play it.
While this concept isn’t brand new – cross play first appeared way back in 2002 when players with PS2s and PCs could play Final Fantasy 11 together – it is something I think many games nowadays should implement, especially if the games are available across all current platforms.
Not only would it bring players together and quite possible put an end to the infamous PC vs console debate as everyone will be able to play together without any restrictions, but it will also make games more diverse and possibly even more popular and more well received than they are now.
Games Which Support Cross Play
There are so many games currently that support cross play and have thousands of gamers playing together in matches with multiple game systems as we speak; far too many to list, in fact… It would take a really long time to combine a list of them all here, so to save you some time, I’ll just list the most popular games that support cross play instead. 😉
The games are:
- Rocket League
- War Thunder
- Ark: Survival Evolved
- Crackdown 3
- Final Fantasy 15
- Gears of War 4
- …and many more.
These are just scratching the surface of the sheer number of games that support cross playing; they are just the most popular games of the bunch that I know. If you know of any popular video game that supports cross play which I may have missed on that small list, then please feel free to jot them down in the comment section below. 😉
Why Does Cross Play Matter?
So, we’ve listed a bunch of games that allow multiple platforms to play on online servers at once… does this even matter? And if so, why? Well, it does matter actually… and the reason why it does matter is because it will put an end to many verbal fights and arguments on the internet surrounding consoles vs PCs.
Being able to play the same game online in the exact same server no matter whether you’re rocking a PC or a console is brilliant as there won’t be any need for, “I have to get a console to play this game!” or “I need an expensive PC to play this one!” Both platforms will be able to play the game, and even play on the exact same servers together.
Not only will the platform arguments either end completely or immensely decrease in number as people will learn to get along in terms of whatever game platform they use, but cross play will also make games more accessible to more people and increase sales, ultimately bringing in more money for the developers and make the game more popular as well.
The Problems with Cross Play
Sadly, although it seems like a wondrous aspect of online gaming, cross play isn’t entirely flawless… there are a few problems which will need to be addressed before you take the plunge and buy a game or two from the list to try your hand at cross playing against other people around the world…
First of all, graphics and performance will be a big issue which will separate the two, and give one side an advantage and the other a disadvantage depending on the situation.
Of course the PC platform will be superiour in terms of its better graphics and unrestricted performance and frame rates; this will give players an advantage because the increased number of frames will help ensure a smooth and accurate experience, something which consoles cannot do well.
Furthermore, if there is a lot of action going on in a small area, for example rockets exploding everywhere, this can be demanding on a console and cause lag from a sudden drop in frames, something which will throw off players and prevent them from getting smooth gameplay and even cost them an easy kill or a successful evade from the enemy.
The second problem with cross play is the huge fact that there are still so many games out there that doesn’t support it; of course, there is the issue of every platform having a different graphical and performance experience from each other, but this is a very minuscule problem and one that can easily be overcome with good optimization of games.
If other games on the market had cross play, then there would probably be no need for the very controversial platform exclusives or those silly console vs PC wars as everyone will be able to play their games with each other in peace.
The final problem when it comes to video game cross play is that fact that gamers won’t be able to speak to each other in the server, especially if one of the platforms applicable happens to be PC.
For example, PC gamers can easily text chat with keyboards, but not only will the console players not be able to see this text chat, but even if they could they would not be able to chat as easily as gamers with keyboards.
Yes, I know that both the Xbox One and PS4 allow you to chat with text with a virtual keyboard, and there are small keyboard accessories for the controllers too, but still… you won’t be able to chat as quickly as PC users.
The Future of Cross Play
While there may be a few problems about cross play, some which unfortunately cannot be fixed as easily as others, the future of cross-platform play seems very bright indeed, and certainly a future of video games which will no doubt be forgotten easily.
From now on, I believe all games which will be released on multiple platforms should implement cross play into their online features. Not only will this boost sales and ratings for the game and in turn give the developers more money and success, but it would also unite gamers no matter what platform they play their games on.
Whether or not will developers implement cross play into their games, however, only time will tell…
And those are my thoughts on cross-platform play, what the problems of it are, and what may be the future of it. Thank you so much for reading this post and checking out this blog of mine.
If you have anything to say about cross play in video games, then please don’t be afraid of voicing your thoughts down below in the comment section. 😉
Jamie – the PC Gaming Nerd