Cross-play has been one of the hot topics this year. Following events at E3, at which it was announced that owners of Microsoft and Nintendo consoles could cross-play both Minecraft and Rocket League, Sony’s refusal to do the same was much lambasted.
So over the weekend, it surprised many to see that Epic Games’ recent release Fortnite had PS4 and Xbox One users in the same game. Following reports from users on Reddit, players were noticing unusual player IDs in their PS4 games. Unusual by the fact that the names had spaces in, which is not a valid character on Sony’s PlayStation IDs for the PS4 console, but is on Microsoft’s Xbox gamer tag.
It turns out that, according to a report from Ars Technica, cross-play was enabled by mistake over the weekend and was confirmed by a spokesperson from Epic Games. “We had a configuration issue, and it has now been corrected,” the spokesperson told the site in an official comment.
Much has been made of the fact that cross-play is not only possible but very quickly implementable as well. Rocket League developer Psyonix told Polygon earlier this year that they could enable cross-play with a metaphorical button push, but are awaiting permission from Sony to do so.
However, this recent event with Fortnite marks the first time, accidentally or intentionally, that PlayStation and Xbox users have been able to play each other in the same game. So if nothing else, a little history was made this weekend.