Nike has partnered with Roblox to create a virtual world called "Nikeland." Users will be free to dress up their avatars in Nike apparel, including clothes and sneakers.
The sports giant has announced it will be free for now. Nikeland aims to bridge the gap between developers and consumers, for the latter to try out new products and for the former to delve deeper into the consumer's interests.
Sam Poser, an analyst who covers Nike at Williams Trading, stated how he feels Nikeland could be used not only to familiarize kids with the brand at an early age but also for the company to develop a deeper relationship with Roblox and use the chain as a testing ground for Nike products.
Here's what he said:
"If they know a bunch of kids are wearing it on Nikeland, then they will then come out with it in the physical world."
The virtual world includes Nike buildings and allows Roblox players to participate in mini-games
Buildings and other scrapers inside Nikeland are inspired by the original Nike headquarters and will serve as an arena for Roblox players to participate in mini-games. Once Nikeland launches, visitors can participate in games such as "tag", "the floor is lava," and "dodgeball" with their friends.
Furthermore, with the Nikeland tool kit, players will be able to design their own creative games.
Nike also announced that it plans on emulating global sporting events. For instance, a soccer event could be organized during the FIFA World Cup, or flag football game during the Super Bowl.
Roblox players will also be able to use their mobile accelerometers to convert online movements into offline play. For instance, jumping will be emulated in the virtual world, enhancing the Nikeland experience.
As already mentioned, players will be able to enter a digital showroom clad in Roblox colors to dress their avatars in Nike products. This will allow them to test Nike's latest offerings and might also give them an idea about future collaborations. Kids would also be free to create designs of their own.
This is not Nike’s first launch with Roblox. The pair partnered together in 2019 on Nike Air Max Day.
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As metaverse is gradually trickling down to every section of society, Nike understands the value of creating a niche for itself, allowing the brand to connect with a new generation of athletes. The brand hopes to have this eventually translate into real life sales.