Back when Microsoft and Nintendo were pushing for cross-platform play, Sony was adamant about not joining. However, the issue was boiling over when cross play stopped for Fortnite between PS4 version and other platforms. Recent documents from the Epic Games v case. Apple via The Verge He revealed Sony’s contempt for cross-play on PS4 and how he felt “cross-platform play is not a slam dunk no matter the size of the title.”
So when he eventually allowed for cross-play support, the backlash seemed to have paid off. However, according to a document on “cross-platform policy, requirements, and process” from August 2019, Sony established a cross-platform revenue share. This meant that a publisher had to pay the console manufacturer’s royalties if PlayStation players significantly affected title performance in order to “offset the drop in revenue.”
The Verge report was recently updated with comments from Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney. In his evidence, he said, “In some circumstances Epic will have to pay additional revenue to Sony. If someone were playing mainly on PlayStation, but paying on an iPhone then this could trigger compensation. ”He also fully confirmed that paying these fees is what ultimately led to it Fortnite support cross play on PS4.
Whether other publishers are subject to the same revenue share as their games – like Activision’s Call of Duty: Warzone – and to what extent is unknown. But it would explain Sony’s sudden change of heart for cross-play.