Cross-platform multiplayer for Gears of War 4 merges two popular gaming communities, and Microsoft's measured rollout ensures that gameplay balance is a top priority.
Microsoft has introduced cross-play compatibility for its sci-fi third-person shooter Gears of War 4, allowing players on the Xbox One and PC platforms to play together in public versus multiplayer matches.
The update makes Gears of War 4 one of the few Xbox One titles to support online matches featuring both console and PC players, following on the heels of other cross-platform favorites like Rocket League and Killer Instinct.
Gears of War 4 marks the franchise’s Xbox One debut, originally launching for Microsoft’s console in October. A PC version also dropped last year, though players were initially locked to their chosen platform when searching out competitors in the game’s many included online versus multiplayer modes.
Starting Friday, Gears of War 4‘s Social Quickplay mode now defaults to a cross-play playlist, putting Xbox One and PC players in competition with one another as part of the matchmaking process. The Coalition community manager Liam Ashley explains that the change was made after results from a recent test weekend proved encouraging.
“Late last year, we conducted a cross-play Test Weekend to bring our Windows 10 and Xbox One fans together in public Versus Multiplayer, combining fan feedback and extensive data gathering to help us decide the next steps to take to deliver a matchmaking cross-play Versus experience,” Ashley said.
“When we looked at the extensive data we received thanks to the incredible participation from our community, there was a clear message — it works. […] As such, beginning today, Social Quickplay will now be a Cross-play playlist! This step is planned to be a permanent move for the future of Social Quickplay, with the first few months being a ‘trial period’ in order to monitor player feedback alongside data to ensure the Test Weekend was representative.”
Gears of War 4 is available for the Xbox One and Windows 10 PCs.