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Tuesday, May 4, 2021

A PlayStation-Discord Partnership Coming Early 2022...?

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - We know nothing about the extent of it yet. ...Don't trust anyone who claims to know beyond what's written here as of publishing.

So Sony Interactive Entertainment is very proud to announce that they have entered into a partnership with gamer-focused messaging service Discord, to bring... some kind of integration in early 2022. Sony put out four paragraphs of jargon, really explaining nothing about what they actually plan to do. They also invested money (funding) into Discord.

This statement was (purposefully) written so the reader can get whatever they want out of it:

Together, our teams are already hard at work connecting Discord with your social and gaming experience on PlayStation Network. Our goal is to bring the Discord and PlayStation experiences closer together on console and mobile starting early next year, allowing friends, groups, and communities to hang out, have fun, and communicate more easily while playing games together.

Sony announced this yesterday. I'll interpret it as not an important announcement for Discord, because between yesterday and today, Discord hasn't mentioned the story on their news or blog pages. If this was gonna be the next big thing for Discord, you'd think they'd mention it.

Let's compare this announcement to a similar one made almost exactly three years ago... this time from Microsoft's Xbox:
Connecting with friends is such a big part of why people game. Gamers all over the world use and love Discord to easily chat and connect with friends while they game. In the coming weeks, this collaboration will make it easier for gamers to choose to do just that – make it easier to connect and see what friends are playing across console and PC. It’s part of the work we are doing to provide gamers with more choice, allowing them to play how and where they want to.
All that ended up happening was that you can link your Discord account with Xbox Live, so people on Discord can know your Xbox name and what you're playing on your Xbox. Does that functionality warrant that kind of flowery language?

Discord Xbox Live integration connection Call of Duty Ghosts status
Maybe if I had Xbox Live and connected it with Discord, this'd be more significant?
(I didn't ask this person if I could use them as a screenshot. And I'm just not gonna tell them I did.)


Currently, there's no integration between PlayStation and Discord like there is with Xbox and Discord, so at a minimum, they're going to match that. Perhaps you'll be able to access Discord from a PlayStation device—though I'm not sure why you'd want to do that. (That said, I'm also not sure why you'd want to access YouTube from your videogame console, but lots of other people currently do that!) Perhaps Discord will replace PlayStation console-to-console communication entirely!

Some folks are contrasting the timing of PlayStation's official announcement with the widespread rumour-spreading from anonymous sources that Microsoft wanted to buy out Discord—which, shortly after, more anonymous sources stated that the attempt failed. Basically... a big nothing story from start to end whispered entirely by unverifiable sources.

You might also want to contrast that to the actual buy-out that Sony did of EVO (or Evolution Championship Series, Earth's biggest fighting game tournament). That was an actual substantive announcement made from both sides of the transaction that will have big impacts of how EVO will be conducted this year. (Notably, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate won't be there, though it's unknown if that's because Nintendo is sick of it, or because Sony won't let them be there despite their public assurance that “All gaming platforms will remain welcome at Evo.”)

Anyway, based on how these vague corporate statements work, I wouldn't put much thought into PlayStation and Discord going together. But what do I know?



If you think you know better than Ludwig as of early May 2021, let the world know in the comments section. The whole KoopaTV staff uses Discord as a communication tool, and it's better than the previous one (AOL Instant Messenger). It took Ludwig a long time to find someone on Discord who was using the Xbox Live connection so he could screenshot it for this article.

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