Skip to main content

PUBG cross-platform support: Everything we know

As one of the originators of the battle royale, PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds was once nearly synonymous with the genre. Its hardcore, squad-based gameplay made it an absolute phenomenon on streams, and it still maintains a popular place on sites like Twitch. Times have changed, though, and games like Apex Legends, Fortnite, and Call of Duty: Warzone have come for PUBG’s crown, drawing away players and viewers with the twists they add to the battle royale formula.

That being said, there’s still plenty of reason to dive into PUBG. It still receives regular updates to keep its content fresh, and its signature mix of difficult, tactical play with a little bit of jank can’t quite be matched by any other game out there. Now that PUBG is available on so many different platforms, there’s even more reason to try it out and see if you can pick up that all-important chicken dinner with some friends. Before starting a multiplayer game with a presence on so many platforms, though, players looking to get their crew together will want to make sure they understand how cross-platform play works in PUBG.

Further reading

Is there cross-platform support in PUBG?

The short answer is that PUBG does have cross-platform support — for some players. Cross-play in any form is actually a relatively recent addition to PUBG. Though the game has been available on Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and PC for quite a while now, PUBG only added console cross-play in October 2019. That move combined the previously separate player pools of the PS4 and Xbox One versions of the game, allowing matches to be filled with players on both consoles, making it quicker and easier to fill a lobby with players and get a match going.

At first, although PUBG had combined its player pools, players could still only form parties with others on their own console. That changed in February 2020 with the addition of PUBG’s cross-party play update. With that update, PUBG introduced a combined friends list that let players see friends on their own network — whether that was Xbox Live or PlayStation Plus — as well as a list of PUBG Friends on the other network. From there, Xbox and PlayStation players could form squads and jump into the game together regardless of the platform.

PUBG squads facing off

PUBG arrived on Google Stadia much later than on other platforms, in April 2020. However, that long wait did have an upside, as PUBG featured cross-platform play on Stadia on its release day, putting Stadia players in the same matchmaking pool as those on other consoles. That’s especially good news for those on the Stadia side, as its significantly smaller install base could make finding full matches a challenge if it didn’t feature any kind of cross-play.

One big caveat to PUBG’s cross-play should be obvious here. While the battle royale is available on PC and mobile devices in addition to consoles, those platforms aren’t included in the game’s cross-platform pool. As of now, PC and mobile PUBG players can only join matches with players on the same platform, and developer PUBG Corp. doesn’t seem to have any plans to change that in the works.

Why is there no PUBG cross-platform support for PC?

The somewhat limited cross-play in PUBG may be frustrating for PC and mobile players, but there’s a good reason behind it. PUBG is absolutely a game of skill, and a lot of what separates top players from the rest is their ability to react quickly to enemy players and take them out with perfectly-aimed shots.

Anyone who’s played a shooter with multiple different control schemes can tell you that your method of input has a massive impact on how well you’re able to pull off those split-second, high-accuracy shots. If PUBG’s player pool were to be fully combined across all platforms, mobile players with fiddly touch controls would hardly stand a chance, while PC players with more accurate keyboard and mouse controls could dominate against all but the most skilled console players.

This divide in control setups can even be seen in PUBG’s implementation of cross-play on Stadia. Google’s streaming service allows players to play its games on multiple devices with different control schemes, but Stadia’s version of PUBG only has cross-platform support with consoles when players elect to use a controller. Players using a mouse and keyboard are stuck in an entirely separate matchmaking pool without cross-play. That’s bad news for Stadia PUBG players who want to use a mouse and keyboard, but it’s necessary to keep things fair for all players.

It’s not out of the question that PUBG could bring PC players into the matchmaking pool from a technical standpoint. Input-based matchmaking has been added to Fortnite, for instance, and it’s promised to come to Halo: The Master Chief Collection. Similar to how cross-play is handled on Stadia, PUBG could feasibly let PC players join the console matchmaking pool if they set aside their keyboard and mouse for a controller, but it seems the developer has other priorities for now.

Robin Bea
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Robin is a Pittsburgh-based writer focused on gaming, entertainment, and science. She spend her free time mostly making…
Everything we know about Summer Game Fest 2022
Summer Game Fest logo.

With E3 being canceled this year, and many unsure if it will ever return, the summer was in danger of being a wild west of every publisher and developer creating their own events and announcements with no rhyme or reason. For all the faults with it, E3 at least organized all the major players in the gaming space into some sort of order that everyone -- players and press -- could keep track of and plan around based on their interests.

In the vacuum left by that iconic summer event full of press conferences, Geoff Keighley has stepped up in the past few years to introduce a new system to maintain order during the summer announcements.

Read more
Everything we know about Mario Strikers: Battle League
Donkey Kong charging across the field.

Mario wears many hats (sometimes literally). While his main profession is the hero of the Mushroom Kingdom, that doesn't stop this Italian plumber from having plenty of hobbies, such as kart racing and participating in just about every sport under the sun. It isn't uncommon to find Mario teeing off for a round of golf, swinging his racket in a tennis match, or even competing at the Olympics. One sport that he's only dabbled in, despite being the most popular one in the world, is soccer, aka football. We've only gotten the chance to lace up our cleats with the cast of the Mushroom Kingdom in two prior games: Super Mario Strikers on the GameCube and Mario Strikers Charged on the Wii.

These soccer games, despite being a mostly noncontact sport, were some of the most brutal and serious depictions we've seen of Mario and company. Because of the more family-friendly image Nintendo likes to present Mario with, many gave up hope of this series ever coming back. That only made the announcement of the sequel, Mario Strikers: Battle League, now 15 years later, all the more exciting. This is a much different style of sports game than other Mario titles, and an even greater departure from other soccer games, so newcomers have a lot to learn and look forward to. Before you strap on your shin guards, here's everything we know about Mario Strikers: Battle League.

Read more
Everything we know about Greedfall 2: The Dying World
A trio of natives praying in a clearing.

After 2014's Dragon Age: Inquisition, fans of the BioWare-style RPG were left with nothing to sink their teeth into for years. The next Mass Effect game failed to deliver the experience fans of the series were hoping for, and the less said about Anthem the better. This gap in the market allowed an up-and-coming developer, Spiders, to try to fill that gap with its own new IP. Greedfall was a direct attempt to give fans of those old RPGs the experience BioWare had moved away from. It was technically rough in many ways, but Greedfall found an audience and plenty fans for being a solid RPG with a unique setting and story.

That breakout game was successful enough for the team to announce a sequel -- or prequel, rather -- called Greedfall 2: The Dying World. Aiming to be bigger, more ambitious, and hopefully more technically sound than the first, this new RPG has more competition and higher expectations than the first game. While we still have a lot to learn about this new adventure, we're excited to begin another expedition to the island of Teer Fradee in this colonial-themed title. Here's everything we know so far about Greedfall 2: The Dying World.

Read more