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My friends own the PS3 version of the game, while I am playing on the Xbox 360. Will we be able to join each others' games?

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up vote 16 down vote accepted

No, Sony & Microsoft don't want to share. This isn't a technical issue (examples: Shadowrun for Xbox 360 can play with the Windows version, Portal 2 supports the PlayStation 3, Mac OS X, Linux and Windows versions playing together), but is a very deliberate business decision on their parts to try and carve out as much of the userbase for their own exclusive use. Even in cases where companies run their own private servers outside of XBL and PSN, they don't let the users from one sandbox play with the users from another (even though essentially it is the same clients talking to the same server using the same protocol).

TL;DR

Microsoft and Sony are kings of their respective sandboxes and won't let anyone play a game with anyone in another sandbox.

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Unfortunately this is sad and true.. –  Tx3 Oct 6 '11 at 14:50
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I would like to point out that there are some technical issues to this as well. Making two different builds of a game play together is often a whole lot trouble, and a lot of developers won't go through with the trouble, even if they have the blessing from Sony and Microsoft. –  mordi2k Oct 6 '11 at 15:01
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@mordi2k It's not much of a technical issue. I've taken TCP programming and the TCP/IP stack doesn't care about the hardware or OS that either end of a connection is running. TCP takes care of things like endianness. As long as both applications can agree on all aspects of the protocol (simple in this case, as the developer can re-use all the code) there should be no problem in that regard. The only place where the two builds really differ has to do with the system calls and optimizations. Mac OS X, Linux & Windows games talk to each other all the time because of TCP's platform neutrality. –  CyberSkull Oct 6 '11 at 22:51
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In addition, there's a big difference between MS and Sony regarding PSN and XBL. MS own XBL from end-to-end and developers can't bring their own servers into play; Sony allows developers to provide their own servers (ref: Portal 2 cross-play with Steam). –  Mel Boyce Oct 7 '11 at 4:54
    
@MelBoyce I'm fairly sure that EA operates their own servers for the various sports games they put out, and Square Enix operates the FFXI servers on their own. –  CyberSkull Oct 7 '11 at 9:51

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