Collaborations in Video Games: When Multiverses Collide
As companies look to access and win customers, many have found success in brand collaboration. When properly executed, such corporate cooperation boosts visibility and revenue for both brands. In short, video games are a hot industry. There are now over 227 million video game players in America, and naturally, savvy marketers are taking note. Celebrities and luxury brands are turning to video games to increase their reach and relevance with the modern consumer.
High Fashion and In-Game Gear
Luxury fashion brands have turned to partnerships with gaming industry giants to increase exposure and revenue. While at first these partnerships were predominantly seen as a way to increase traction for luxury clothing brands, it has quickly become apparent that they are mutually beneficial. As well as brands like Gucci featuring in well-known games such as Animal Crossing and League of Legends, many partnerships are now multi-layered. For instance, a recent Fortnite x Balenciaga campaign offers accessibility like never before. The two brands collaborated to release in-game digital apparel that corresponds with a real-life luxury collection. This allows gamers to get a high-end look for their character — without paying to wear the real clothes. The digital looks include fancy backpacks, tiger-stripe jumpsuits, chain link tops and more creative, high-fashion styles. The Fortnite x Balenciaga brand collaboration is just one example of a growing trend in luxury digital fashion, which gives legacy brands a chance to gain relevance with a younger audience.
Celebrities in Video Games
With the rise of video game technology, which includes facial and voice recognition, so happened the rise of celebrities in video games. One of the most recognizable celebrity crossovers was Keanu Reeves from the game Cyberpunk 2077. But video games haven’t exclusively featured actors. Fortnite and The Sims 4 have recruited musicians to increase sales and game awareness. Fortnite has streamed musical performances from stars such as Ariana Grande and Travis Scott. Lately, it is Blackpink, a girl K-pop group, and PUBG who have partnered up together to link K-Culture fans to this highly addicting battle royale game and vice versa. Fans can receive exclusive in-game gear and participate in a virtual concert.The music group even performed a new, unreleased song for those who were lucky to participate in the event.
The Mega Metaverse Concept
The latest trend in gaming is to bring popular and beloved characters together. There’s no reason to limit games to the same genre in order to lead into a shared universe. One game could be an FPS, the other an open-world RPG, and another a horror adventure. Granted, the rules of the world would have to remain consistent in order for this to work, but if all the teams came together at the start to build this plan then it could all feel organic. For example Multiversus, a fighter/brawler game has been able to bring all of Warner Bros characters (animated or not) together to fight in one single arena. You can play as Bugs Bunny, Batman or even Lebron James. In case you are more of a Disney fan, Mirrorverse brings the same concept into their RPG where you have access to many of beloved Disney characters. It is unlikely that such IP giants will ever have a crossover, but the idea of a mega metaverse is not out of the picture. Maybe one day, you will be able to play as any imaginable character in a huge game collaboration with no rules or restrictions.
In conclusion, collaborations between brands and games are almost always mutually beneficial. Gaming has become an outlet for all ages, not just for younger generations. Brands and celebrities can gain exposure from new audiences while boosting the game’s credibility.