Shuhei Yoshida, the president of Sony Computer Entertainment’s worldwide studio, says that connecting the PS4’s and Xbox One’s online networks ‘could be easy.’
Recently, the press outlet Eurogamer spoke with Sony Worldwide Studios’ Shuhei Yoshida at the Game Developers Conference 2016 in San Francisco to discuss Microsoft’s invitation for Xbox One and PS4 cross-platform play, and whether or not the Japan multinational would follow through on the offer. Interestingly enough, the company’s executive didn’t deny the possibility, and even went as far as to say that should Sony and Microsoft collaborate on actually making it happen, he surmised that “the technical aspect could be the easiest.”
During the discussion, Shuhei Yoshida also went on to mention that Sony has been a supporter of cross-platform functionality in the past for numerous games between PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, and PC, citing Street Fighter 5 and Rocket League as examples of recent titles to have received the treatment. Of course, this neither confirms nor denies Sony’s willingness to move forward in a partnership with Microsoft to unite the PlayStation Network and Xbox Live, and instead comes off as a bit of light bragging on the executive’s part.
However, Yoshida did touch on the possibility of having the PS4’s and Xbox One’s respective online platforms connect, explaining that even though the technical aspects could easily be taken care of, there are still other hurdles to overcome. The Sony president’s full statement on the issue is as follows:
“Because PC is an open platform it’s much more straightforward [compared to Xbox One]. Connecting two different closed networks is much more complicated, so we have to work with developers and publishers to understand what it is they are trying to accomplish.
“We also have to look at the technical aspect. The technical aspect could be the easiest. We also have to look at policy issues and business issues as well.”
Shuhei Yoshida’s expounding on the matter doesn’t really add anything new or illuminating to the conversation. In fact, it merely reflects Sony’s brief press release about Xbox One and PS4 cross-platform play that was given the day after Microsoft openly invited all developers to merge networks.
Taking all of this into consideration, it’s obvious that the ball is in Sony’s court when it comes to allowing PS4 and Xbox One gamers to join in together for online multiplayer. And, of course, Yoshida is surely holding off on making any definitive announcements on the issue right now, as he and his company are likely in the process of deciding whether or not moving forward with connecting the networks is beneficial from a financial standpoint.
Nevertheless, should Microsoft and Sony eventually reach some sort of agreement on the matter, it probably won’t be any time soon. With any luck, it will come to pass at some point in our lifetimes, if only to see an end to the ludicrous nature of the console wars.
Sony‘s next big release for the PlayStation 4 is the Naughty Dog-developed Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End, and it’s set to release on May 10, 2016.