Epic Online Services has unleashed new tools that permit crossplay between Epic Games Store and Steam users.
Previously, the rival platforms Epic Games and Steam were unable to communicate. As a result, a Steam player and their friend who preferred the Epic storefront couldn’t go head-to-head in a Rocket League match.
Crossplay has become much more of a focus for platform-holders in recent years, though. The move towards cross-platform play is thanks in no small part to Fortnite’s success, which even managed to force Sony’s hand on the matter.
It should come as no surprise, then, that Epic Games has seen fit to bridge yet another gap between competing services.
Crossplay between the Epic Games Store and Steam is available
Courtesy of free tools from Epic Online Services, PC players on Steam and the Epic Games Store can now enjoy cross-platform features as one community.
In a blog post to Epic Games Store developers, the company notes the following: “Epic Online Services crossplay now works seamlessly on Steam and Epic Games Store, enabling Steam players to search from over half a billion friends, connect and play.”
The features include a merged friends list between the two services, account linking, and integrated game invites that function across Steam and the Epic store.
Interestingly, this marks only the start of Epic’s efforts. Native support for other PC stores is also underway, with similar crossplay features for console and mobile devices expected to come at a later date.
Senior Director of Epic’s Online Services, Simon Allaeys, said that crossplay between the likes of Steam and the Epic Games Store could engender the industry’s “next major growth spurt.” Only time will tell whether the executive’s wishful thinking proves accurate.