A Borderlands 3 update featuring full cross-play is ready for release, but is being blocked from being added to PlayStation consoles, Gearbox CEO Randy Pitchford has claimed, though the exact reasoning for this remains unclear.
In a slightly vague tweet, Pitchford claims that the developer has been “required” to remove cross-play support for PlayStation 5 and PlayStation 4 in order for the game update to go through certification.
He writes, “Good news or bad news first? Good News: An update for Borderlands 3 has been prepared for release that includes full crossplay support across all platforms. Bad News: For certification, we have been required by the publisher to remove crossplay support for PlayStation consoles.”
Good news or bad news first? Good News: An update for Borderlands 3 has been prepared for release that includes full crossplay support across all platforms. Bad News: For certification, we have been required by the publisher to remove crossplay support for PlayStation consoles.
— Randy Pitchford (@DuvalMagic) May 27, 2021
The wording of the tweet suggest that it is not Sony that is preventing cross-play in this case, but rather Borderlands 3 publisher 2K Games. Connecting the dots by delving into the public airing of industry goings on from the Epic Games vs. Apple trial, this could be a simple case of money. Sony dragged their feet on allowing cross-play multiplayer with rival platforms, but eventually relented under the condition that those companies enabling cross-play would compensate Sony for lost revenue.
It’s easy to speculate that 2K Games are about as fond of such an idea, as Sony were happy with Epic’s Tim Sweeney revealing their confidential business dealings.
It’s not entirely clear what the next step is here, whether Gearbox will release the update with cross-play across Xbox, PC and Stadia, or if they will hold fire and try to work this situation out to have cross-play on all platforms.
It’s taken quite a while, for them to reach this point, considering that in 2019 before the game’s launch, Pitchford said they were “committed to cross-play functionality on as many platforms as possible,” and that it would come “as soon as practicable.”
Guess there’s some people who don’t think it’s practicable…