Cross-Platform?

tl;dr: Will Battleborn have cross-platform play, and if not, why not?

So Blizzard made the decision of not putting cross-platform play in Overwatch for the stupid commonly stated reason of “PC players have an advantage due to keyboard and mouse blahblah”. First of all, not all PC players use a keyboard and mouse, a number of my friends and I use controllers to play games on PC. In the Battleborn CTT on PC, I used my DS4 controller exclusively and was the top ranked player on my team in the majority of the games I played (by top ranked I mean for that match, not my overall level). Also, the fact that the UI in most PC games updates when it recognizes you’re using a controller shows and the fact that controller support is even there in the first place shows that the developers acknowledge this. Second, you can get a keyboard and mouse for consoles, so you really can’t say that “All PC players use Mouse & Keyboard, all console players use controllers”. All that being said, I really don’t see any reason for developers to keep segregating PC and console players simply on the basis of the whole “PC master race” way of thinking. If the developers are really that concerned, then they could make it a matchmaking option that players can check an “only my platform” option if they feel they’re being out-performed by players of another platform. They could also add another column to the player stats table that indicates what platform the player is on, then run reports to determine if PC players are in fact dominating the competition, and if the playerbase is complaining about it and the reports support it, then split the servers at that point.

Anyway, I didn’t see anything yet from Gearbox about whether cross-platform play will be enabled or not, I did see that PS4 players seem to be getting an extra character, so that seems to indicate that there wouldn’t be cross-platform, unless the extra character is being released as paid DLC for the other platforms sometime after launch, so I figured I’d ask and maybe get Gearbox thinking about it or reconsidering it since there’s still some time before the game is released.

There was a thread about this a while back, you might look for that. Although it seems like you’re pretty much dismissing most of the serious concerns that I remember being brought up in that thread, so I don’t know if it matters…

Also, there might have been an official responce in there I don’t remember.

Ah, I tried a search and it was recommending topics as I was making this one, but I couldn’t find one that specifically covered this. I would be interested to see if people brought up reasons other than keyboard and mouse vs controller.

It was mostly controller v. keyboard and mouse, aparetnly there was a study done a while back and average skill keyboard and mouse players were pretty much just dominating highly skilled controller users.

And then there’s always the old “sony and microsoft would much perfer if you bought a PS/Xbox instead of being able to use the one you already have to play with your friends with the other system.”

Pretty much this. MS may be trying to bring Xbox and PC gamers together, but Sony doesn’t have a vested interest in doing so.

Eh, I don’t always 100% trust the results of studies like that, there’s too much variation that they can’t really test fully. For example, did they only test teams of 100% mouse vs 100% controller, because that’s not a realistic scenario, they should test what happens when you have 4 mouse/1 controller vs 3 mouse/2controller and scenarios along those lines. Don’t get me wrong, I’m definitely aware that the mouse allows greater precision when it really comes down to it, but I still say developers should be allowing the players to make the decision for themselves as to whether they feel they’re getting dominated or not, the matchmaking option of “only my platform” would resolve that easily enough. As for trying to keep players separated from a sales standpoint, Valve already demonstrated that PS3/PC cross play was possible with Portal 2, so I don’t necessarily think it is so much of a Sony and Microsoft trying to keep the platforms separated and potentially drive up sales. Borderlands on PS3 (I imagine PS4) allowed you to log into Shift separately from your PSN account too, so there’s definitely the foundation for logging into other networks than PSN, and if the third parties are maintaining the servers, I don’t see how Sony could really prevent the communication anyway.

  1. PC gamers have a distinct advantage of console players because a mouse in inherently easier to aim with than a joystick.

  2. The beef between Microsoft and Sony runs deep, and they don’t like their kids playing together.

  3. While possible, it is incredibly difficult and costly to get XBL, PSN, and Steam servers to communicate together.

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Your counterpoint against the input device bit really isn’t relevant, a mouse is just better for aiming than a joystick, on an individual level that means, for players of equal skill, the one using the mounse should win >50% of the time, and on a team level, the team with more mouse users has an inherent advantage becuase of their input device.

Portal 2 is not an aim based competitive shooter, that’s really not a good comparison, just because cross-platform has been done in the past (that’s the only example I know of actually, and if it really is the only one, I think we should ignore it as an outlier).

And the problem with “giving the players a choice” is that console players don’t have a choice; they can only use gamepads. So there is no reason for them to choose the option where they would knowingly put themself at a dissadvantage. And if no one uses the feature, there really isn’t much point in having it.

PS3/PC cross platform gaming requires no input from microsoft, the PS and XBOX both use prorietary software that is 100% owned by sony and microsoft, while most of the software, that isn’t just inhrent on a PC, that is required to run a game is owned by a third party.

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YUP YUP YUP.

  1. Also found out this morning that it’s a hell to get the client side patches live on all platforms on the same time. so everyone can play together.
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No, for the reason you mentioned that a Keyboard and Mouse give PC players an advantage over Console players.

PC players choosing to / not to use a Keyboard and Mouse does not negate the fact that a Keyboard and Mouse gives an advantage over a Controller.

True, but it also shows that the Controller UI is secondary to the Keyboard and Mouse UI. This shows that developers recognize most PC gamers prefer a Keyboard and Mouse to a Controller.

While you can certainly get a USB-based Keyboard and Mouse for Consoles, almost no Console games support the Keyboard and Mouse for their UI. Not even the FPS games on Consoles support Keyboard and Mouse. I have 100+ games for Wii, Xbox 360 and PS3 combined and not one actually supports Keyboard and Mouse Controls. I have a wireless Keyboard, that I use primarily for redeeming Codes, entering search criteria in a Console Web Browser / PlayStation Store and sending text-based messages to people on my Friend’s List.


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