A Sony representative has confirmed that MLB The Show 21’s upcoming release on Xbox consoles was solely MLB’s decision.
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The anonymous rep said to Inverse: “As part of the goal for this year’s game, MLB decided to bring the franchise to more players and baseball fans. This decision provides a unique opportunity to further establish MLB The Show as the premier brand for baseball video games.”
The rep’s comment comes after it was announced last week that MLB The Show 21 will release on Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S and Xbox Game Pass alongside PS4 and PS5. This marks the first time an MLB The Show game is being released on Xbox since 2006, when the game became a PlayStation exclusive.
Inverse also spoke to several analysts, who believe the move makes practical sense for the MLB, in terms of reaching a wider audience. “I’m sure [MLB] has been watching the in-game monetization of other sports games franchises such as Madden and FIFA with interest and is thinking about audience reach rather than premium sales in this case,” said Ampere analysis research director Piers Harding-Rolls.
MLB The Show 21 will release on April 20 on Xbox consoles via standard purchase options, as well as Xbox Game Pass on launch day. Players will also get to enjoy cross-play, meaning Xbox players will get to go up against PlayStation gamers and vice versa.
MLB The Show 21 will also include cross-progress, meaning players will be able to transfer their progress over between PlayStation and Xbox consoles.