For years, Sony has steadfastly refused to allow crossplay to games available on PlayStation. The video game giant has long refused to allow PS4 players to find Xbox, Nintendo, or PC players online. Sony was simply concerned that buyers would be less inclined to invest in a PS4 to play with their friends.
After months of negotiations, Epic Games managed to bend Sony in 2018. Fortnite has thus established itself as the first game to offer crossplay on PS4. Since 2019, Sony has opened this possibility to other games. Two years later, the documents presented during the lawsuit between Apple and Epic Games (concerning the eviction of Fortnite from the App Store) reveal the bottom of the negotiations with Sony . It reveals several proposals written by Joe Kreiner, Epic Games’ vice president of business development, for the intention.
SONY CLAIMS A ROYALTY FROM DEVELOPERS USING CROSSPLAY ON PS4
As expected, Epic Games struggled to convince Sony to accept crossplay. To influence the position of the Japanese giant, Joe Kreiner in particular proposed to do “everything possible to make Sony look like heroes” , to add exclusive characters for PS Plus subscribers to Fortnite, or to launch a dedicated game for PSVR2, the Sony’s upcoming virtual reality headset.
These offers haven’t changed Sony’s mind. On the other hand, the company eventually found crossplay to be a good way to request money from publishers and developers . According to another document presented during the trial, Sony is forcing developers to pay a royalty to offer crossplay on a game.
Specifically, Sony demands financial compensation as soon as a PS4 player performs microtransactions that exceed a certain percentage on another platform. “If someone primarily plays on PlayStation, but pays on the iPhone, that could trigger compensation,” says Tim Sweeney, CEO of Epic Games. For Sony, this tax aims to “compensate for the reduction in income” caused by crossplay. Tim Sweeney specifies that Sony is the only manufacturer to claim financial compensation.
Source: The Verge