Square Enix has revealed the reason why Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn isn't coming to Xbox 360 is because Microsoft won't let its users play with those on other platforms such as PC and PS3/PS4.
Speaking with RPGsite, the game's director Naoki Yoshida explained Microsoft has a policy in place that would cause the player community to be split apart – something the team doesn't want to happen.
The main reason from our side is that I don't want the community to be divided; to be split into two or more,” Yoshida said. For example, one player might be on the PC version, another might be on the PS4 version, and I'm playing the Xbox version – but we're not able to join the same game servers. That is just… I just don't like the idea. I disagree with it.”
To be frankly honest with you, there are now so many mobile devices, smart phones, everything — why would you ever just stick to one platform from the hardware aspect? Just — make it open to everyone? That's my opinion.”
Yoshida added that while being on the Xbox platforms would make good business sense, the studio isn't willing to sacrifice what it deems as a critical aspect of the upcoming MMO.
I would love for as many players as possible to enjoy the game worldwide, so from a business point of view it could make sense to have it on the Xbox platforms. But as I mentioned earlier, that would bring about the tragedy that somebody might have to give up their existing character. Then players might get frustrated, and then they ask us – ‘Square Enix, can't you do something?' and then… yeah. Unless that happens, we can't really do anything.”
Microsoft's policy remains unchanged at the time of writing, which wipes out the possibility of a fully connected cross-play world across all platforms if Square were to include Xbox 360.
Without that option in place, don't expect to see FFXIV or any other cross-play multiplayer titles (such as CCP's Dust 514) on Microsoft's hardware anytime soon.