The National Football League (NFL) is launching the NFL Zone, an interactive fan experience in Fortnite Creative in partnership with Visa. The metaverse experience was designed for both Fortnite players and football fans alike.
Within the NFL Zone, fans can experience a virtual tailgate, a Visa-sponsored stadium and mini games. The Visa sponsored mini game — blitz the bag — features a capture-the-flag gameplay. The other — seek and sack — is a modified version of Fortnite’s “search and destroy” mode. Seek and sack will be playable on maps inspired by individual NFL teams. The San Francisco 49ers will be featured first but maps for the Pittsburgh Steelers, New York Giants and more will follow.
“Fortnite has become one of the go-to destinations for audiences seeking immersive, social experiences, and we see a massive opportunity to bring NFL football to a new generation of fans with NFL Zone,” explained Ed Kiang, vice president of video gaming at the NFL. “Through developing a robust catalog of content with top gaming personalities and pairing it with a persistent presence in the metaverse, we’ll be able to grow generational fandom off the field and enhance the connection audiences have with NFL football.”
The NFL announced plans for partnerships with content creators to promote and feature the NFL Zone which will begin rolling out in December. In addition to posting content featuring the NFL Zone, each creator will also participate in the NFC vs. AFC competition. Creators will compete for either the AFC or the NFC and their wins will be tracked on a leaderboard in-game. Each player in the winning division will receive an in-game trophy.
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This type of in-game competition featuring content creators is becoming more popular as an engagement strategy.
Of course, the NFL is no stranger to Fortnite or the metaverse. Fortnite’s partnership with the league was one of the first Epic forged all the way back in 2018. For the 2021 Super Bowl, the NFL created a virtual experience in Fortnite but this was designed to be short-term. Later that year, the NFL teamed up with Melon and Roblox to build a metaverse experience. Earlier this month, the NFL doubled down on their Roblox partnership.
To create the NFL Zone, the league only used tools that are openly available in Fortnite Creative. The league leveraged technology from Epic-owned SuperAwesome to implement kid-safety features.
Players can access the NFL Zone today. The Hub’s Island code is 3402-0256-6913 while the 49ers Island code is 6133-5764-5986.
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