It's no secret that Nintendo has been behind the times with online services for quite some time. While the company has made fantastic leaps ahead over this past hardware generation, and the new My Nintendo system points towards a bright future, there's definitely been some glaring issues that will have to be addressed at some point. One of these things is the concept of cross-buy, where a game purchased for a platform is playable under one's account on another device. There have been a few instances of cross-buy on the eShop -- like with Dragon Fantasy: The Volumes of Westeria -- and the developers of that game recently explained why the feature didn't reappear for its sequel.
Adam Rippon of Muteki Corporation recently sat down with Seafoam Gaming to talk a bit about the Dragon Fantasy games, and one of the questions was why Dragon Fantasy: The Black Tome of Ice didn't have cross-buy like the first game. Interestingly enough, Rippon explained that it's due to how Nintendo handles cross-buy; buying a game on one device gives you a code to download a free digital copy on the other device, which means you can simply give it away to a friend if you choose. Evidently, this had an impact on sales of the first game, so the developers opted to pass on it this time around.
I love the idea of crossbuy and I would always prefer to do things that way, but the way it works on Nintendo systems just didn't work well for us. On Sony platforms, crossbuy means that if a user buys it on one system, they get it added to their account on the other system. But on Nintendo platforms, they give you a free download code for the other system. People just ended up giving those codes to friends, which meant nearly half the people who got the game didn't have to pay for it. It wasn't the end of the world, and our sales numbers for the first game were reasonably okay, but it just wasn't something I wanted to do again. I love crossbuy, but I just have a hard time justifying it when it's not actually used for the intended purpose.
For more of the interview, check it out here, there's some cool stuff about the development of these games.
What do you think? Did they make the right choice by axing cross-buy for their latest release? Will Nintendo ever implement cross-buy on an account-based level? Drop us a comment in the section below.