Gaming

A Quick Rundown on Fortnite’s Oakley Collab

Fortnite is one of the biggest games in the world, with an active player base of over 200 million in a 30-day window. Since its initial release in 2017, many other battle royale games have been introduced, but none have reached the level of success Fortnite has. In fact, it is consistently among the best free Epic Games to this day. A critically regarded game with creative modes comparable to another hit game, Minecraft, Fortnite has made such an impact that its fame extends beyond the gaming community.

Over the last few years, Fortnite has proven its cultural value through big partnerships. The latest among these has been with the iconic performance brand Oakley.

Why brands keep collaborating with Fortnite

Up until a decade or so ago, gaming was considered more of a niche industry, with little reach outside of gamers and developers themselves. Most partnerships would be limited between game makers, like when characters from the Legend of Zelda became playable in 2014’s Super Mario Kart. But with the advent of social media catapulting games and gamers into the limelight, the video game industry has grown massively. Today, it’s worth an estimated $610 billion globally.

Given this, outside parties have wisely decided to hitch their wagons on the industry’s biggest names. Of course, this includes Fortnite, which is presently worth around $10 billion. What makes Fortnite collabs memorable, though, is that they’re not just for show. Rather, they present consumers with new and exciting products that cater to both fandoms. For instance, back in 2021, Fornite partnered with the luxury fashion house Balenciaga for a special capsule collection. Rolled out in two parts, this partnership allowed players to use characters dressed in designer looks, along with specially designed gear like Speed 3.0 Balenciaga sneakers, which were reimagined into pickaxes. More recently, Fortnite also began working with performance-wear brands. In June 2023, Fortnite partnered with Nike. An American athletic goods corporation, Nike is one of the most recognizable brands worldwide, especially for their shoes and apparel. For their collab, Fornite and Nike released “Airphoria,” which is a playable in-game island themed after the Nike Air Max sneakers. Of course, this would not be Fortnite’s only collab in the sporting goods arena, as evidenced by the Oakley partnership.

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Why brands keep collaborating with Fortnite

The Fortnite x Oakley Crossover

Even before its release, there was already a lot of buzz around the Oakley and Fortnite partnership. Arguably, this is because gamers understand that Oakley is not just a big name but a brand that understands gaming, too. Among its line of performance goods, the California-based company also offers Oakley gaming glasses. Each pair in their gaming collections is made with intentional materials. This includes their Prizm Gaming 2.0 Lens tech that reduces eye strain and enhances color vibrancy from OLED and LED screens. They also make use of slimmer arms that fit under headsets and lightweight yet durable O-Matter materials so that the frames will remain comfy throughout the day.

For Fortnite gamers who average about 10 hours of gameplay weekly, as per SageDemand studies, this is a partnership that can help them not only look good but feel good. Released last November, the Fortnite and Oakley collab included the aforementioned gaming glasses but in Fortnite colors. There are two styles included in the collab, namely the Oakley Helux and the Oakley Hydra Fortnite. The former features an oversized frame for a wider field of vision and signature amber-tinted lenses with Prizm Gaming 2.0 tech for increased visual acuity. This is designed to help increase reaction time among gamers. It also comes with the Fortnite logo stamped on the arms. Meanwhile, the Hydra Fortnite glasses have a bolder semi-rimless silhouette. Made with the same tech, this pair comes coated in cyan color-shifting paint inspired by the skies of Fortnite. The lenses are the golden Prizm 24ks, which enhance contrast. Each pair is also etched with the Fortnite logo and the coveted Battle Royale victory crown.

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What made this collaboration even more significant is that it featured Maria Lopez, aka Chica, in its campaign shots. Lopez is part of Team Oakley and also happens to be the first Latina LGBTQ+ creator in Fortnite’s Icon Series. Originally intended to be a limited edition collection, both Oakley and Fortnite have said they will extend the eyewear’s availability in line with demand. Currently, both pairs are still available exclusively on Oakley websites, so it’s safe to say the fanfare is not slowing down any time soon.

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