The Rockstar Games Social Club is barely a new concept, being a staple of the company's gaming interface since Red Dead Redemption was released. For Grand Theft Auto V, they added a few new innovations to the crew system that really make it special. The hierarchy system within crews allows you to delegate certain roles and responsibilities to each member of your crew, which is a great tool that allows for a deeper, richer multiplayer experience. You can entrust executive decisions to your closest buddies, whilst delegating smaller tasks to others who may not have earned your trust.
The idea of the hierarchy system is much more complex than it looks at first glance, however. The Rockstar Games Social Club has an interface all on your own that allows players on both Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 to connect with each other as well, which enables an experience that borders on cross-platform play. If a crew leader plays on PS3 and promotes his buddy on Xbox 360 to the "Commissioner" rank in his crew, that person has all of the powers of the crew leader. Through the Xbox 360 network that player can now hire new members of the crew, promote them, and even kick members off of the crew.
What does this mean for gaming this time around? With this system, Rockstar has given many gamers a glimpse into the future. This little link between Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 users will not only force loyalists of both companies to put aside (some of) their differences and work together as a unit, but it will also bust open the door for more developers to come up with ways for everyone to play together regardless of what system they've invested in.
Of course, this isn't total console synchronization. I still can't play with my buddies who happen to have chosen the Xbox 360 over the PlayStation 3, but we can still be on the same crew and interact with each other through the Rockstar Social Club and, to some degree, that means we're playing together. Considering Rockstar Games' penchant for trend setting in the game industry, don't be surprised if other developers find ways to incorporate system mixing into their games further down the line.
Do you guys think that Rockstar might have something here? Leave a comment below, and check back here at www.fanboysanonymous.com for any and everything GTAV.