The future of Disney and Epic Games, what can happen between this alliance?
Fortnite as a platform and Disney as one of the companies with the most important properties at the moment. Where can it all go?
One of the biggest news stories of the week was the announcement of a partnership between Epic Games and The Walt Disney Company, accompanied by a huge investment from the home of Mickey Mouse, Marvel, Star Wars and more. While details are scarce at the moment, it’s time to put on our imaginative hats and think about what could come from this alliance.
Fortnite to a more relatable future
All of this didn’t happen overnight, and one of the most important steps Epic Games had to take was to tone down the characters in Fortnite. If you recall, at the end of last year, before the Fortnite universe expanded, a controversy hit the game as several character outfits lost weapon elements in their design. At the time, it seemed very obvious that this was about the leap to the then-rumored LEGO Fortnite, but the intentions go further: safe virtual spaces for children that could be created through partnerships with family content companies.
When I was talking to a colleague about it, he just said, “You can’t give Elsa a machine gun.” The vision is to continue to create very well-crafted LEGO Fortnite-like experiences and to remove weapons, both for ratings reasons and for the characters’ own usage guidelines, something that has to be done very carefully. While we have seen enough superheroes on Fortnite who would never touch a weapon in comics (we see Spider-Man and Batman) enter the Battle Royale, an arrangement of this magnitude geared towards a family environment needs to be better guarded.
What can we expect?
Unfortunately, Epic Mickey is already taken, and oh boy, would that have been a great name for this alliance. One of the possibilities, and thinking about what Fortnite has done recently, would be the mix between the so promised Metaverse and a spiritual successor - without the toys to life - of Disney Infinity. A safe space where fans of the brand, gamers, and the curious can enter these virtual worlds. But along with this, we can have a series of adventures, platform games and other activities that we have certainly already seen in the creative islands of Fortnite, but with a greater level of detail and care.
However, it must be admitted that Fortnite’s recent forays into other worlds have not had a success that can be considered permanent, with LEGO Fortnite being the most redeemable. We can only wait for an experience that has to be very well cared for from the beginning, with a lot of content divided into either areas or franchises, with enough elements to attract not only the Disney fan to new experiences but a whole generation looking for new worlds to discover.