The recent Modern Warfare crossplay test (opens in new tab) might become a lot more commonplace, as Sony has quietly moved PS4 crossplay out of beta, leaving the decision of whether or not to include crossplay up to developers. It's a significant change for a company that was previously resistant to the idea, but with the lines between platforms already becoming increasingly blurred, the turnabout seems like a necessity.
Crossplay's benefits will extend well beyond people playing on PS4, potentially opening the door to a greater number of games launching with the feature, while also helping games with smaller online populations combine their playerbase instead of letting them die alone. It's much harder to make an existing game crossplay because each platform will have its own economy and might not even be on the same version, but a lot of issues would be mitigated if it became standard.
In an interview with Wired (opens in new tab), Sony Interactive Entertainment CEO Jim Ryan implied that crossplay and the PS Now streaming service, which just got a big push, would be part of Sony's strategy for the next generation.
"The track record of the incumbent platform winning the next time around is not a great one," he said. "So the major thrust of my executive energy is to avoid complacency."
PS Now lets you download or stream around 800 games on your PS4, but it also lets you stream them on your PC. Like all game streaming services, it's not a perfect experience and very much depends on the quality of your internet connection, but it's a lot more tempting now that the subscription has been reduced by 50 percent, to £9/$10.
Platform owners are probably less enthused about the walls coming down, but for us there aren't any downsides. Apart from people complaining about how people using mouse and keyboard have too much of an advantage. Look forward to more of that!