Gears of War 4's Horde mode long supported cross-platform gameplay, but the more traditional player-versus-player (PVP) aspect of the game didn't allow Xbox One and PC gamers to play with each other. Now that's changed, as The Coalition announced that you can now compete with players on both platforms through the Social Quickplay selection.
The announcement is the result of a weekend test from the studio where it allowed players from both platforms to participate in Versus multiplayer matches. The data it gathered showed that 115,000 unique participants played 750,000 matches. Over 90 percent of those matches included players from both PC and Xbox One. However, the percentage gap between Xbox One players to PC players was staggering, with Windows 10 gamers making up just 9% of the entire group.
Still, that didn’t stop The Coalition from making the PvP-centric gameplay a cross-platform feature. According to the announcement (opens in new tab), these first few months will be considered a “trial period” for the game mode so the developers can listen to player feedback. The plan is to make the feature permanent at some point in the future.
Two multiplayer modes that will stay independent to each platform are the Core and Competitive variants of PvP. The studio said that's because “our Ranked experiences are as closely matched and competitive as possible.” The Coalition is also working on a better solution for Core and Competitive matches on the PC so players can have the same experience as their console counterparts.
Regardless, the addition of cross-play PvP gameplay is a major step for The Coalition, and an even larger move for Microsoft, which is trying to add more games to its Xbox Play Anywhere collection. Other titles with multiplayer gameplay could use similar features to expand their fan base, especially if it's done as well as it was with Gears of War 4.