Cross play is a feature once thought impossible due to console relations that has found a place in the gaming world within certain games from different walks of life. Cross play, of course, references games that can have people from different consoles or computers play online together – so if your best mate has a Play Station and you have an Xbox, you can still hop onto a game and play together.
Rocket league was an early adopter of cross play, allowing console players to hop online with the PC crowd. If you’ve ever seen players with ‘PSY NET’ (Psyonyx Network), that just means they aren’t on the same platform as you are. This is fantastic for Rocket League, as it’s a game that works best on a controller, meaning PC players won’t have an advantage over their couch cousins.
Halo, on the other hand, tackles the issue differently. Anyone who uses a mouse and keyboard will tell you that First Person Shooters are far easier with this input. You can quickly aim at targets without holding a thumbstick and having to readjust your aim for the target and you have more keys to bind actions to. After Halo 4’s release on the Master Chief Collection, however, keyboards have gone toe to toe with controllers and we’re not seeing a drastic advantage in casual lobbies. This is because the aim assist and bullet magnetism is far more aggressive for people on controllers. The game also limits competitive lobbies to input devices, meaning keyboard players will all have the same set of advantages without impeding on controller players.
Cross play isn’t just an issue for traditional games, though. Onward is a Virtual Reality shooter that’s released on both steam and the Oculus Quest library. The Oculus Quest is a less powerful headset that doesn’t require a computer to run. The developers of Onward have edited the game to run smoothly on both the Quest and PC headsets such as the Oculus Rift S or the HTC Vive. Sure, the game looks much better on the more powerful PC headsets, but at least the two can play together!