Share prices sure are in the news a lot this time of year. We've already heard that Nintendo's value has taken a hit following its E3 presentation, and now it's Sony's turn.
The news that Switch owners who have previously played Fortnite on PS4 cannot transfer their progress to Nintendo's machine has triggered a backlash against the Japanese electronics company, with shares falling 2 percent.
In case you've missed the furore, it's basically like this. Sony doesn't support cross-console gameplay at present (a stance at odds with both Nintendo and Microsoft) and as a result, anyone who has previously played the game on PS4 cannot sync their progress with the Switch version - the only way to play on Switch is to create an entirely new account and begin from scratch. Even if you entirely disconnect your Epic Account from your PSN account, you still can't associate it with another system.
All purchases and progress are therefore locked to the PS4, and if you want to experience the game on another console like Switch, then you'll need to buy elements like the Battle Pass twice. Xbox One owners have no such worries, as playing the game on that console first does not prevent you from connecting your account to the Switch version.
The backlash has been slowly building since Fortnite launched on Switch earlier this week, and Sony has issued a statement addressing the issue, stating that it is invested in safeguarding the security of its 80 million PSN subscribers. It was also pointed out that cross-play is possible with the PS4 version - but only on platforms that are not direct console competitors:
We’re always open to hearing what the PlayStation community is interested in to enhance their gaming experience. Fortnite is already a huge hit with PS4 fans, offering a true free-to-play experience so gamers can jump in and play online. With 79 million PS4s sold around the world and more than 80 million monthly active users on PlayStation Network, we’ve built a huge community of gamers who can play together on Fortnite and all online titles. We also offer Fortnite cross-play support with PC, Mac, iOS, and Android devices, expanding the opportunity for Fortnite fans on PS4 to play with even more gamers on other platforms.
Whether or not this problem will convince Sony to change its mind remains to be seen, but on one level, it does have a point - cross-play has the potential to open up security concerns. For example, to play Minecraft on Switch you have to sign into an Xbox Live account on Nintendo's console. However, in the case of Fortnite - where a third-party (Epic) is providing the sign-in system - this draconian stance holds less weight.
As Reggie himself puts it, cross-platform play is "fan-forward".