By Alice O'Connor on June 2nd, 2014 at 8:00 pm.
Which is better, PC or PlayStation 4? There’s only one way to settle this: realising that it’s a daft question and a petty argument entirely unworthy of your precious time. Why war over platforms when you can war across platforms? War Thunder is bringing PC and PlayStation 4 together for a spot of friendly murdering, introducing cross-platform multiplayer “very, very soon.” Why bicker when you can be united in a shared love of destroying vintage tanks and aeroplanes?
Yes, yes, Quake III players on PC did smash their Dreamcast counterparts. And FASA’s Shadowrun FPS was so concerned about mouse controls being better than an Xbox 360 gamepad that it wonkified aiming for PC players. PC-console cross-platform play needn’t necessarily end that poorly, mind, not only because War Thunder’s not an FPS.
Unlike those two, War Thunder uses matchmaking, so it can bring players together based on the results of their play, regardless of what’s in their hands. Who’ll be able to tell the difference between someone’s who’s better (or worse) at the game and one who’s simply controlling it another way? Especially with 32 players buzzing around, or rolling around now it has tanks.
Control issues aside, we don’t see many cross-platform games because it’s largely considered not worth the effort. It’s unlikely to shift many copies of a regular retail game. Free-to-play games, however, live or die on their playerbase. They need lots of players who feel invested in the game, so getting to roll everyone together and not split people from their pals is more worth the investment. Hopefully we’ll see other F2P developers have a crack at this so we can play more games with our consoling chums.