Nintendo Wants to Help Publishers Incorporate Cross-Play by IGN
When publishers want cross-play, Nintendo wants to help them make it happen.
One of the most hot-button topics at E3 last month was cross-play: Nintendo and Microsoft allow it; Sony doesn’t. In a recent investor call, Nintendo reiterated its desire to help third-party publishers incorporate cross-play into their Nintendo Switch games.
An investor on the call asked Nintendo about how cross-play has helped increase the popularity of Fortnite and Minecraft on Switch, wanting to know what sort of initiatives Nintendo had in place for bringing this feature to other multiplatform games. Nintendo Managing Director and former president Tatsumi Kimishima declined the opportunity to comment on particular third-party games.
“I will say that our fundamental way of thinking about offering Nintendo titles on other platforms remains unchanged,” Kimishima said.
At this point, Senior Executive Officer Susumu Tanaka jumped in to reaffirm how committed Nintendo is to fostering cross-play in Switch games.
“Cross-play basically comes about from conversations between publishers and platform holders,” explained Tanaka. “We are inclined to do what we can to help publishers incorporate cross-play when that is what they want. The other parties involved also have a say in whether we are able to reach this outcome or not, so we will continue to discuss it with them.”
Tanaka’s words echo similar sentiments expressed by Nintendo of America COO and President Reggie Fils-Aime. Speaking with IGN at E3, Fils-Aime declined to talk about Sony’s decision to ban cross-play on PlayStation 4, but he spoke about how Nintendo is high on the feature for Switch games.
“We embrace working with a developer and enabling them to bring their vision to life,” Fils-Aime said. “And whether that’s Fortnite, whether that’s a number of the other games that have cross-platform play on our console, from a developer standpoint that’s what we want. And we work hard with them to bring that to life.”
After E3, Sony executive Shawn Layden said he was “confident” his company would find a solution to the cross-play fiasco, but he didn’t offer any hints as to what that solution might be, and Sony’s current stance seems like an embarrassment.
Nick Santangelo is a freelance writer based in Philadelphia. He loves video games and sports, but not sports video games. Follow him on Twitter.