Sony Boss defends decision to block cross-play with Xbox One, gives this explanation

There were some recent announcements about cross platform play which is pretty exciting for gamers, since they’ll be able to play with friends who didn’t choose to buy the same consoles. It’s only a very select group of titles so far, but it opens up the door.

For starters, Microsoft made the announcement that Minecraft players on Xbox One would be able to play with other people who are on PC, Nintendo Switch, Mobile, and even VR.

image: mojang.com

Also, Nintendo announced that Rocket League is coming to the Switch and there would be cross platform play between PC gamers on Steam, Xbox One, and the Switch.

Microsoft is opening the door for cross platform play, Nintendo is, and the people making the games welcome it too, but Sony is putting up the road block here.

Wesley from Eurogamer recently spoke to the PlayStation head of global sales and marketing Jim Ryan, who explained why Sony didn’t jump on board…

He explained that, with Minecraft in particular, a lot of the players are young and they (and their parents) trust Sony to provide a curated online experience and to be careful what they expose them to:

“We’ve got to be mindful of our responsibility to our install base. Minecraft – the demographic playing that, you know as well as I do, it’s all ages but it’s also very young. 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.” – Jim Ryan

When pressed on the issue, pointing out that Nintendo is probabally the absolute most concerned when it comes to providing a safe, curated experience for their players yet is allowing cross platform, Jim Ryan responded as follows:

“Yeah, that’s true. Everybody has to take their own decisions. We’ll do that. Like I say, we have no philosophical stance against cross-play at all.” – Jim Ryan

However, he did leave the door open, saying nothing is ever a done deal, and that anyone “who is dogmatic in that matter is typically a fool. That said, to my knowledge, there is no live conversation ongoing at the moment.”