Why Do Gamers Care About Sharing Games on Other Platforms?
Many gamers have a die-hard affiliation.
Just as sports fanatics have his/her favorite teams, video games have always been littered with rivalries: Horde vs. Alliance, Star Wars vs. Star Trek, and of course Xbox vs. Playstation (vs. PC?).
With each allegiance comes unwavering pride in the form of merchandise, financial support, their first born child, etc.
"Xbox is better than Playstation because we get Halo!"
"Playstation is better than Xbox because we get Kingdom Hearts!"
The list goes on and on for ages, much like the heated arguments that ensue between the consoles, leaving one or both parties saltier than the popcorn being eaten by the rest of the world.
However, if we stop to think about all the controversy this has caused, and why people feel so strongly about sharing their favorite games with other consoles, do people actually care about sharing games? Or is everyone's brand loyalty getting ahead of themselves?
A Sense of Pride and Ownership
It makes sense that players of a certain console take pride in their controllers, games, and interfaces of choice.
The console war has been a timeless battle of friend and foe, but there is no clear winner. Each side has its pros and cons, just like Android and iPhone, that suits different users better.
However, emotions and feelings always let loose when our pride gets involved and with brand loyalty also comes a need to prove that our side is the better side.
Usually when a new game is announced for Xbox One, for example, it's treated as ammunition against the opposing party. So when Quantum Break, which was originally an Xbox exclusive, is now being released on PC as well, sparks begin to fly.
Is Pride More Important than Accessibility?
Often times players are torn between defending their console of choice and whether or not releasing on multiple platforms would actually benefit the bigger picture.
For example, FPS games that are cross platform spark the debate between who gets an advantage. PC users are said to have an easier time using the keyboard and mouse, while the console players are stuck with a controller.
Again, it comes down to preference and each different player as an individual.
Microsoft's Big Move with Xbox One
There comes a time, despite all I've mentioned previously, when players can come together, and it seems like that time is upon us.
Microsoft recently revealed that it will begin to allow Xbox One players to game against PS4 and PC users, so long as the other party is willing.
This is incredibly significant to the gamer-sphere, since at first glance it would seem that each party suited up and fighting in the console war would be furious.
To many people's surprise, a lot of players are coming together and actually celebrating this bold move, and are placing friendships and playing with others above the need to be loyal to his/her respective console.
Agreeing to Disagree
What makes Microsoft's announcement so successful is that it's no longer trying to fight to be the better console, but agreeing to work side by side.
Each fan group is not being forced to choose now, instead they are encouraged to play with the other, which is eliminating a lot of the hatred and animosity that comes along with choosing a console.
All in All
It's within human nature to want the entity that you support to be the best, but many times what you have that works for you will not work for someone else.
Being allowed to game cross-platform (the ball's in your court, Sony) will alleviate a lot of tension created by the "console wars," and in turn allow everyone to be proud of what they like without having to fight over it.