With Guggimon being the first virtual influencer and Janky following in his footsteps in being part of Fortnite, this may be a common trend for Epic Games down the road.
We’ve had a lot of cool and outright wacky characters in Fortnite through the years, and with more franchises soon to be collapsing with the battle royale, there’s no telling what kind of persona will come next. Singers. Superheroes, heck, even video game characters from all walks of life have starred in Fortnite. So when we saw that Janky was going to be the next virtual influence that’s coming to the Fortnite item shop as a skin, we could hardly believe it. This is a relatively new topic at hand for Epic Games since the previous collab with a virtual influence that they’ve done was their first–that being Guggimon. Will virtual influencers from TikTok and other social media platforms finally make their way to Fortnite? Or will this be just a two-time thing?
Also Read: What’s Next for Fortnite Game?
The Story of Guggimon
Guggimon was the first-ever virtual influencer to come to the Fortnite item shop back in June of 2021. Unbeknownst to others, the virtual celebrity has been slowly implanting himself in the internet’s collective mode. This is shown by the collaborations that he’s been pulling off with the likes of Rico Nasty and even Gucci. Having him in Fortnite is just icing on the cake, at this point.
Fortnite players will know the Epic Games is no stranger to having high-profile collaborations with other franchises, with previous crossovers ranging from Marvel to The Walking Dead, the battle royale can be considered as the jack-of-all-trades when it comes to having a vast range of characters. However, the Fortnite developer treads into new ground with the inclusion of ‘virtual celebrities’. Among the many pop culture icons that showed up in the Season 7 Battle Pass, Guggimon is a virtual influencer that’s racked up more than 2 million followers on TikTok.
The crossover between Guggimon and Fortnite happened when Superplastic Founder and CEO, Paul Budnitz, Epic Games reached out with the brand after noticing Guggimon’s antics on social media. More often than not, Guggimon’s video on TikTok goes viral almost every time, so it’s no surprise that Epic managed to catch a whiff of it while looking for their next collab to do.
After working on skin designs and cosmetics of the horror-obsessed Guggimon, Epic released the cosmetic item to their Fortnite Item Shop which easily sold like hotcakes at a carnival fair. It also helped to know the Guggimon himself was a huge fan of the battle royale video game, with Paul commenting that Guggimon and Janky usually play the game until the wee hours of the night, chugging Red Bull to keep their energy up.
Add Another to the Pile: Janky Comes to Fortnite
Just months following the addition of Guggimon in the last season, Epic has decided to add another Superplastic-made character into their collection of characters. Enter Janky, a streetwear cat. With a retro taste in jumpers and has a helmet that looks like it came from the closet of Captain America, Janky is the latest Fortnite virtual influencer that received the skin treatment. What’s great is that they added in a bunch of accessories for him as well like a pair of fishbones which can be treated as Janky’s weapon of choice to bop enemies with.
Janky and Guggimon are good buddies, so it’s no surprise to see both of them making their way into Fortnite. Plus, with the constantly growing number of pop culture icons, the metaverse in Fortnite will always have that steady flow of characters that players can always purchase in the Fortnite Item Shop.
Will There Be More Virtual Celebrities in the Future?
During an interview, Paul Budnitz was asked if any more of the Superplastic lineup could potentially make their way into Fortnite as well. According to him, it’s certainly within the realm of possibility and they’re excited to see where the relationship between Superplastic and Epic Games goes. Virtual influencers are becoming more popular, and with Epic’s penchant for doing mass crossovers, players can expect virtual celebs to come to the battle royale very soon.
Virtual influencers have become relevant to the real world despite not living in the same realm as us humans in the first place. With Guggimon made available in the Season 7 Battle Pass and Janky purchasable in the Fortnite item shop using a Fortnite account, having more of the TikTok stars in video gamers certainly isn’t out of the question. What do you think of the likes such as Janky and Guggimon being part of the Fortnite family? Let us know down below.