Dead Island 2 does not currently support full crossplay functionality between PlayStation 4/5, Xbox One/Series X/S, and PC platforms. Players purchasing Dead Island 2 on different platforms will not be able to play together in multiplayer or co-op modes.
Crossplay allows gamers on different consoles and PC to play together online. However, Dead Island 2 has launched without this feature enabled across PlayStation, Xbox, and PC.
This means if you buy Dead Island 2 on PlayStation, you can only play with other PlayStation players. The game does not support multiplayer or co-op play between PlayStation and other platforms at launch.
The same applies to Xbox and PC – those platforms will have their own separate Dead Island 2 multiplayer ecosystems. Players on Xbox can play with others on Xbox, and PC players can play with other PC players, but full cross-platform play is not possible currently.
Some were hoping Dead Island 2 would follow other major releases in supporting crossplay between competing platforms. However, for now, that is not the case. Friends who purchase Dead Island 2 on different systems will not be able to play together.
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Why Dead Island 2 Crossplay May Not Be Supported Now
Developing and enabling crossplay functionality can pose numerous challenges, which may explain why the Dead Island 2 developers have not prioritized it yet.
First, crossplay requires significant development and testing resources. The game needs to work seamlessly across platforms, syncing up multiplayer connections, player data, and gameplay. This is a major engineering effort and requires extensive debugging to ensure a smooth experience.
In addition, platform holders like Sony, Microsoft, and Valve can impose restrictions around enabling crossplay. There may be political or technical hurdles in getting all parties on board.
Most importantly, the Dead Island 2 development team is likely focused on delivering the best core gameplay experience first and foremost. Crossplay is an optional feature that, while nice to have, is not essential for enjoying the co-op campaign. Prioritizing a polished game on each platform makes sense before expanding to complex crossplay systems.
The developers have not ruled out adding crossplay after launch. But for now, delivering a high quality, cohesive multiplayer experience within each platform seems to be the top priority. Once the game is stable and successful, crossplay could be reconsidered.
Multiplayer and Co-Op Options Available
Even though Dead Island 2 does not have full crossplay support across platforms, there are still robust multiplayer and co-op options available at launch for players to enjoy.
The main co-op experience is the ability to play through the entire campaign with friends. Dead Island 2 supports 3 player co-op for the story, allowing groups to team up and take on the zombie-infested world together. This encourages replayability and experiencing the gameplay from different character perspectives.
In addition, Dead Island 2 will feature cross-generation support through backwards compatibility. Players on PlayStation 4 can play with friends who have PlayStation 5. The same goes for Xbox One and Xbox Series X owners being able to play together despite having different console generations.
So while players on PlayStation 4 can’t team up directly with their friends on Xbox Series X, the cross-generation support at least allows some flexibility to play together between old and new consoles of the same platform. The developers have focused on delivering solid same-platform co-op first before tackling full crossplay across all systems.
Workarounds to Play With Friends on Other Platforms
While Dead Island 2 does not offer full crossplay support between PlayStation, Xbox, and PC at launch, there are some limited workarounds that allow you to play with friends who own the game on a different platform than you.
One option is to utilize backwards compatibility on newer consoles. For example, if you have Dead Island 2 on Xbox Series X/S, you can play with friends on Xbox One via backwards compatibility.
Similarly, PS5 owners can play with PS4 owners this way. So while not true crossplay, backwards compatibility unlocks cross-generational multiplayer.
Steam Remote Play Together
For PC players, Steam’s Remote Play Together feature provides another workaround. This technology streams the game to your friends through Steam so you can play local co-op and multiplayer games online together.
So a Dead Island 2 player on PC can host the game for a friend on a different platform through Remote Play Together. This allows them to experience the co-op campaign together, although only the host actually owns the game.
While not ideal, these backwards compatibility and Steam workarounds do provide some options for playing with friends who are on different platforms. But true crossplay between PC, PlayStation, and Xbox would still be preferred by many fans.
Developer Statements on Potential Dead Island 2 Crossplay Support
The developers of Dead Island 2 have not completely ruled out adding crossplay support in the future, but they are also not making any promises yet.
In an interview with IGN shortly before launch, the lead designer said “We know crossplay is a highly requested feature from fans and something we’d love to deliver at some point. Right now we’re focused on delivering a polished co-op experience at launch across the platforms we’re supporting. But we’ll be listening closely to player feedback post-release to help guide our ongoing support and roadmap for Dead Island 2.”
Similarly, in the game’s official FAQ on the developer’s website, they state “Crossplay between PC, PlayStation, and Xbox is not supported at launch, but is not off the table. We want to ensure we deliver a great same-platform co-op experience first and foremost. After launch, we’ll be looking at player feedback to help determine priorities for future updates.”
So while full crossplay is not available, the developers are open to adding it later if there is enough demand from the player community. They plan to monitor fan responses closely after release to help determine if crossplay should be part of future content updates and patches.
Similar Games With Dead Island 2 Crossplay Support
Dead Island 2 joins other cooperative zombie games that have launched with full cross-platform support between PlayStation, Xbox, and PC. This includes titles like:
Back 4 Blood – This 4 player co-op zombie shooter from the makers of Left 4 Dead has crossplay support across all platforms. Groups of friends on different systems can squad up together and take on the Ridden hordes.
Dying Light 2 – The recent open world zombie sequel includes 4 player co-op with full crossplay. Parkour and slay zombies seamlessly with your friends no matter their platform.
Borderlands Series – Gearbox Software’s looter shooter series has featured crossplay support since Borderlands 3. Including the Tiny Tina’s Wonderlands spinoff, Vault Hunters can play together across PlayStation, Xbox, and PC.
These games show crossplay can be implemented for cooperative zombie experiences and action RPGs similar to Dead Island 2. The feature has become common in the genre, so its absence is conspicuous. However, the developers have not ruled out adding crossplay after launch once core issues are addressed.
Outlook on Post-Launch Support
Once Dead Island 2 has launched, the focus for the development team will likely be on addressing any critical bugs, glitches or technical issues through patches. Ensuring a smooth co-op experience and fixing problems will probably take priority over adding major new features like crossplay.
Crossplay capability can require significant development resources to properly implement across platforms. The developers will want the core game working properly first before taking on that challenge.
Integrating the disparate online ecosystems of PlayStation, Xbox and PC for crossplay is complex. Each platform has their own infrastructure, protocols and policies around opening up crossplay. This takes time and negotiation between the platform holders.
While crossplay for Dead Island 2 isn’t guaranteed, if fans request the feature and it proves technically viable, the developers may explore adding it post-launch once higher priority issues are resolved. But they can’t make any promises yet.
Overall, the outlook is that meaningful post-release support is planned but focused first on stabilization and fixes. Crossplay, if deemed feasible, would come later as a nice bonus rather than being ready for day one.
Assessment of Crossplay Situation
While it’s disappointing that Dead Island 2 won’t have full cross-platform multiplayer support at launch, it’s an understandable omission given the complexities of implementing robust crossplay.
The developers likely wanted to focus on delivering a polished core gameplay experience first for the cooperative campaign and individual platform multiplayer. Getting crossplay working properly across PC and multiple console platforms is challenging and takes significant development resources.
That said, Dead Island 2 still provides great co-op and multiplayer functionality on each platform at launch. Players can team up in groups of 3 to play through the entire campaign together. Multiplayer modes will also support playing with friends on the same console generation, like PS4 to PS5.
So there are still ample options for playing together, just not with complete cross-platform support. Adding in crossplay after launch could provide a nice boost to the game’s longevity and player base. The developers haven’t ruled it out for the future if there is enough fan demand.
Overall the lack of crossplay isn’t a dealbreaker given the game’s focus on cooperative zombie-slaying action. Provided the developers support and update the game post-launch, cross-platform play would be a welcome addition. But the multiplayer offerings look solid even without it on day one.
Summarizing the outlook, many Dead Island 2 players likely desire crossplay functionality, but it is not currently supported at launch. The developers have not ruled out adding crossplay post-release, but are focused on delivering a polished core gameplay experience first.
While full crossplay between PlayStation, Xbox, and PC is not an option now, Dead Island 2 does provide solid multiplayer and co-op features on release. Players can team up in 3 player campaign co-op, and cross-generation play is enabled between PlayStation and Xbox consoles. Workarounds like backwards compatibility and Steam remote play provide some options for playing with friends on other platforms too.
Overall the lack of crossplay is understandable given the challenges of simultaneous multiplatform development and testing. Similar games have shown crossplay can meaningfully expand multiplayer accessibility. Provided core issues get resolved promptly, crossplay may be a nice quality of life addition for Dead Island 2 in future updates. For now fans will need to stick to the available multiplayer and co-op options within the same platform.
I’m a writer, artist, and designer working in the gaming and tech industries. I have held staff and freelance positions at large publications including Digital Trends, Lifehacker, Popular Science Magazine, Electronic Gaming Monthly, IGN, The Xplore Tech, and others, primarily covering gaming criticism, A/V and mobile tech reviews, and data security advocacy.