- Epic Games and Lego aim to shape the future of the metaverse for children.
- The companies claim that the family-friendly virtual experience will empower kids to become confident creators.
- Both companies plan to deliver play opportunities in a safe and positive space.
The LEGO Group and Epic Games announced today that they are entering a long-term partnership to build an immersive and engaging virtual playground for kids of all ages. Not only will the two companies’ metaverse be kid-friendly, but it will also be family-friendly.
In this partnership, both companies aim to “shape the future of the metaverse for children”
American video game and software publisher Epic Games is known for being the maker of the popular online video game, Fortnite. The company said in a press release that the digital experience will “give kids access to tools that will empower them to become confident creators and deliver amazing play opportunities in a safe and positive space.”
The companies did not reveal any further details of the metaverse they are building but have agreed to ensure the digital space remains safe and engaging for children with three principles: 1) To protect children’s right to play by making safety and wellbeing a priority, 2) safeguard children’s privacy by putting their best interests first, 3) empower children and adults with tools that give them control over their digital experience.
Epic Games CEO and co-founder Tim Sweeney previously told The Washington Post that he envisions the metaverse to be “an expansive, digitized communal space where users can mingle freely with brands and one another” and that “it would be a kind of online playground where users could join friends to play a multiplayer game.”
As the metaverse evolves to reshape how people interact in a 3D virtual world, both companies will combine their experience in toy and game-making for children to build a version of the metaverse with the well-being of children in mind.
“Kids enjoy playing in digital and physical worlds and move seamlessly between the two. We believe there is huge potential for them to develop life-long skills such as creativity, collaboration and communication through digital experiences,” said Niels B Christiansen, CEO of The LEGO Group.
The Washington Post noted that Lego did not make its foray into the metaverse with TT Games, the development studio behind Lego video games. The media outlet pointed out that this could be due to the gaming studio’s workplace issues or its refusal to switch to Epic’s Unreal engine.
If that is the case, Lego’s partnership with Epic Games makes sense as the game developer already has expertise in building creative tools for developers to create age-appropriate experiences online as well as immersive worlds that are open and accessible to players around the world.
In 2020, Epic Games acquired SuperAwesome, a company that has pioneered technology designed to deliver safe digital engagement with children under 16.
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