Let me start by saying; I truly do want cross gameplay and cross game progression. As a lifelong PlayStation gamer and loyalist, I would love nothing more than to own an Xbox player in Destiny with a weapon they cannot obtain yet. However, with the recent uproar in gaming attacking Sony for their policies on these issues I cannot fathom the lack of understanding the community is showing. I understand it is a frustrating issue. It is one you didn’t anticipate encountering. Regardless, your comments and attacks come across as entitled and spoiled. In order to enact change to PlayStation and their policies, we need to look at this from their point of view. I know it’s hard to look at things from a company’s point of view. They are big, and evil, and only care about one thing: Money. However, this issue is a bit different when it comes to Fortnite. These walls were created to protect the PlayStation name and to not allow competitors into their ecosystem. Yes, this separates players, but these are competing companies that are trying to win you over. Although regardless of why Sony is doing this, doesn’t stop it from affecting you. So let’s break down what exactly is happening, and why the change you want might eventually lead to the downfall of consoles.
Over the past few years, Sony has been on the wrong side of the cross-play argument. Rocket League, Minecraft, and now Fortnite have all stirred the pot of what is expected of games. A few years ago you would have never thought that an Xbox player and a Nintendo player could play in the same open world together, but here we are. This was always going to be an issue for whomever was on top, to give up digital ground to your competitor, and great for whoever was on the bottom to help them gain ground. The leading company would have to make a decision; to make the business move or make the sacrifice. Sony is in the middle of this choice right now, we are just too impatient to wait for the decision. It is hard to say if this topic would be so heated if it wasn’t for the fact that if you have ever tied your third-party Fortnite Epic account to PS4 at any time, you are now locked out from using that account on Xbox or Switch.
This policy has most likely been in place with almost every game, even though Epic has decided to make their game cross-play and cross-progression. What this means is if you play on mobile, PC, and PS4 whatever you unlock in one you system have in the other. This is unprecedented in console games and has lead to a lot of ugly rules showing up in the spotlight. However, if you choose to log into Xbox or Switch with your Epic account you are greeted with a message informing you that you cannot link your account because its already tied to PlayStation and you cannot unlink this account from their network. This is locking PC players out of other systems to play Fortnite on. This angered a lot of players, and rightfully so. However, what upset me wasn’t what angered the community. The rest of the players were angry that they couldn’t get everything they earned/paid for on PlayStation on their Switch. This astounded me. Players should have been angry that a company like Sony had any say over where you could log in but instead they wanted their stuff. The stuff they unlocked and paid for on another system. Really?
The biggest game in the world if free. Yes, there is a Save the World mode that costs money, but that’s not the popular mode. Players are angry because the account they linked to PlayStation makes it so you are unable to reacquire the battle passes, costumes, dances, and V-Bucks on your Xbox or Switch. However, cross progression between PC and mobile is allowed on PS4. Really? When you bought Assassin’s Creed and the Season Pass did you expected it to be unlocked on all systems? When you made your Guardian on Destiny did you expect it to also be on PC? Why is Fortnite different? Some will say because it’s free to play, but shouldn’t that make it less likely to give you free things? They have to make their money too.
Yes, I know Epic is rolling in the profit with how popular Fortnite is. They don’t need the money. However, these players who are acting like they deserve these things on all platforms are acting entitled. This is not how business works. These policies Sony has in place are, on paper, to ensure you keep buying your digital content on PlayStation. It is in place and the same with every game that has an online store presence. With every purchase of an online item, from any store you buy it from, there is a cut of the profit. This is the same with all companies; Steam, PSN, Xbox LIVE, and the Nintendo eShop.
This, to use an analogy, would be like you buying a case of Dr. Pepper from Wal-Mart and expecting Target to give you a free case because you already paid for it. The difference is Epic is allowing it. The reason this seems like a problem now is that no company or developer has allowed it before. This is unknown territory in a lot of ways and Sony is slow to change. The comments on Twitter, forums, and blogs have millions of players attacking Sony, acting like they are locking their account on purpose. Yes, it wasn’t an accident. However, the policies have been inplace all games worked up until now. Be assured that Sony will allow this but it just may take some time to undo the policies already in place. In the meantime, gamers need to understand that attacking and threatening will only push what they want further away and get gamers who don’t really play Fortnite to side with Sony. I know you spent money on it but you didn’t lose it; it’s still on your PS4, PC, and phone.
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