LEGO has committed to a long term partnership with Fortnite creator Epic Games to enter the metaverse market, where users will be able to build LEGO sets in virtual environments.
As the Metaverse evolves, it has the potential to reshape how people meet, play, work, learn and interact in an immersive VR world. The LEGO Group and Epic Games are committed to combining their experience to ensure that the next iteration of the internet is designed from the outset with the wellbeing of children in mind.
The pair of companies have agreed to three principles to ensure the digital spaces they develop deliver engaging play opportunities safely:
- Protect children’s right to play by making safety and wellbeing a priority.
- Safeguard children’s privacy by putting their best interests first.
- Empower children and adults with tools that give them control over their digital experience.
The LEGO Group, famous for its plastic brick-based toys, has not neglected the digital sector, having previously launched a successful range of Lego computer games for PC and consoles. According to CEO Niels B Christiansen, investment in digital playing experiences has contributed significantly to the company’s recent success.
LEGO invested $2bn (£1.7bn) in Epic Games in April 2021, with the objective of developing a metaverse platform that would provide secure and safe digital spaces for children to interact with the brand.
In its annual report last year, LEGO said: “We will continue to explore the potential of creating play experiences which merge digital and physical play, given that research shows that parents appreciate the benefits of blending digital and physical worlds.”
Christiansen commented: “Kids enjoy playing in physical and digital 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 in both.
“We have a responsibility to make digital play safe, inspiring and beneficial for all, and just as we’ve protected children’s rights to safe physical play for generations, we are committed to doing the same for digital play.”
Tim Sweeney, CEO and Founder, Epic Games added: “The LEGO Group has captivated the imagination of children and adults through creative play for nearly a century, and we are excited to come together to build a space in the metaverse that’s fun, entertaining, and made for kids and families.”