Now that Xbox have shown an interest in cross-platform play it is interesting to see what this would bring to games. While examples can be seen with the likes of Street Fighter V between PlayStation 4 and PC, perhaps the most interesting is Minecraft on mobiles and Windows 10.
When Microsoft brought the game to Windows 10 it was integrated into the Microsoft Store. This version was more controlled and more like what you would see on the consoles and mobile devices. What this brought though was a more restricted version of the game, that didn’t have the power of the standalone version.
What the more controlled version of Minecraft brings though is a more unified experience with the mobile version. This is why cross-platform play was able to be implemented. As the Windows 10 version is updated with the version of Minecraft that is controllable by Microsoft, it can be made compatible with more version.
Why should we want Minecraft to be cross-platform? It all comes down to the ability to play with friends. Minecraft at its best is a sociable experience that can be enjoyed with friends. Whether it be to create huge structures, or to simply play the Minecraft games, it can be a fun experience. Sure, there is nothing wrong with playing it on your own, but it is always more fun with others.
If the future of gaming is going to be in cross-platform support, Minecraft will always be a good example of how to do it well. While the so called “console wars” may pit the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One against each other, the fact is players will get much more fun out of taking that competition into actual gameplay.
Whether we work together in games, or fight, the fact you can play together with your friends is the real strength of online gaming and social gaming. Minecraft did a good job at this with the Windows 10 and Pocket Edition so it shows that there is a future in the cross-platform support.
Will Xbox and Sony work together to make cross-platform support work? We’ll have to wait and see. For now, the growth is small but games like Minecraft show cross-platform support is possible. This is something that fans undoubtedly want, so the ball is now in the company’s hands.