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Sony issues weak response to Fortnite cross-play controversy on PS4 and Switch

Sony issues weak response to Fortnite cross-play controversy on PS4 and Switch


Sony says it’s interested in fan feedback

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Sony is facing a growing backlash from PlayStation 4 fans who are angry they can’t log into the Nintendo Switch version of the game. Thousands of Fortnite fans have been reacting angrily since news broke earlier this week that you can’t use a Fortnite account that’s been used on the PS4 with the Nintendo Switch. Sony is blocking Epic Games from allowing cross-play and progression sync between the PS4 and Nintendo Switch or Xbox One. This means that any progress, skins, and purchases can’t be shared between PS4 and Nintendo Switch or Xbox One.

After a couple of days of radio silence, Sony is finally starting to respond:

”We’re always open to hearing what the PlayStation community is interested in to enhance their gaming experience. Fortnite is already a huge hit with PS4 fans, offering a true free-to-play experience so gamers can jump in and play online. With 79 million PS4s sold around the world and more than 80 million monthly active users on PlayStation Network, we’ve built a huge community of gamers who can play together on Fortnite and all online titles. We also offer Fortnite cross-play support with PC, Mac, iOS, and Android devices, expanding the opportunity for Fortnite fans on PS4 to play with even more gamers on other platforms.”

If Sony is truly open to feedback from the PlayStation community, then it will be paying close attention to the many replies to every single one of its recent tweets from its official Sony and PlayStation Twitter accounts. They are littered with responses condemning the company for holding Fortnite accounts “hostage.” Sony hasn’t revealed exactly why it’s blocking cross-play on rival consoles, but it dominates the current-gen console market and is exploiting that advantage to block any threats to selling more PlayStation 4 consoles.

Fortnite on Switch error code (screen render).
Fortnite on Switch error code (screen render).
Original photo by James Bareham / The Verge

Both Nintendo and Microsoft are open to enabling cross-play in games. Sony has also previously blocked cross-play between PS4 and Xbox One for Fortnite, Rocket League, and Minecraft, despite Microsoft and Nintendo both supporting it across Xbox One, PC, and Switch. Fortnite fans using a Nintendo Switch are particularly angry this time around as progression in the game is key, and there are no technical restrictions to accessing an account across PC, Xbox, and the mobile iOS version.

”What competitors do is their decision to make,” says Reggie Fils-Aimé, Nintendo’s North America chief, in a statement to IGN. “We believe being both developer-forward and fan-forward is in the best interest of the game.” Microsoft has also welcomed cross-play and progression across Nintendo Switch and Xbox One.