Sony updated its important notices page today to tell PlayStation 5 users that the console’s Accolades feature will, as of this fall, “no longer be supported,” citing that it “hadn’t seen the level of use we anticipated.” Like most PS5 users, this was the first time I’d heard that the console had a built-in multiplayer feedback system at all.
Accolades is a feature on the PlayStation 5 that allows players to commend other players for their performance in multiplayer matches. After completing a match, players are able to anonymously send badges to others they wish to recognize for things like being “helpful,” “welcoming,” or a “good sport.” You can’t spam them, though, or artificially inflate your friends’ collections of virtual commendations, as you’re prevented from sending accolades to your friends or to anyone you’ve already commended in the past 12 hours.
Despite its plans to discontinue the feature, Sony “[encourages] the community to continue to send positive messages to one another.” There’s an excellent joke here about how gamers don’t like to praise one another in multiplayer games, but there’s a better explanation for why accolades were so underused: Not a lot of people knew about it. It was not a feature that Sony advertised very well, and plenty of multiplayer games like Overwatch and Final Fantasy XIV already have built-in commendation systems. And despite the console maker’s recent forays into beefing up PlayStation’s online gaming offerings and capabilities, the PlayStation 5 isn’t currently the platform that I associate with a satisfying online experience. If I wanted to raid in FFXIV, that’s what my gaming PC is for.
But don’t fret, PlayStation owners: You’ll be getting plenty of new PlayStation 5 social features soon. Just last Thursday, Sony announced that it would be opening a beta mode to test screen sharing, game joining notifications, and the ability to send stickers and voice messages. Some of them even sound pretty neat. I’m hoping that they’re implemented in a way that allows me to remember that they exist.