In-game Fashion

category - gaming
type - trends
sector - fashion
sector - media & technology
The synergy between fashion and gaming is swelling as designers and brands produce garments for wearing in-game and IRL

Avatar expressionism

The gaming sphere has presented the fashion industry with a burgeoning landscape for digital influence and aesthetic identity. The digitisation of garments offers a new route for self-expression at a time when consumer worlds are increasingly virtual.

One brand enabling this is streetwear label Sports Banger. Its digital NHS hoodies and Fuck Boris slogan t-shirts are available to purchase within the Nintendo game Animal Crossing, enabling consumers to sport values-based garments in-game and offline.

Meanwhile, creators using The Sims have been replicating items by designers such as Marine Serre and Thierry Mugler.

The in-game community, dubbed Simstigrammars, also take part in digital fashion shows and appear on the cover of magazines. ‘I can express myself with no fear of judgments based on standards imposed by society,’ says one user, @idsims.

Published by:

14 September 2020

Author: Abi Buller

Image: Drest, global


Prada Spring Summer 2014 by Crossing The Runway, global

Virtual storefronts

E-commerce brands are tapping into the gaming world to boost physical sales of garments, capitalising on the medium and using it as a touchpoint for visibility and transaction.

Drest, for example, is an online game that rewards users for completing style challenges and creating looks purchased with an in-game currency. With women mobile gamers being 79% more likely to make an in-app purchase, the opportunities for digital and physical fashion sales are increasing (source: Newzoo).

Net-a-Porter has worked directly with designers to recreate clothing designs as avatar skins in Animal Crossing, making it the first e-commerce brand to monetise digital designs in China. Through a partnership with Tmall, customers are able to buy real clothing and unlock a digital avatar skin of their purchase. Fashion futurist Karinna Nobbs echoes this, telling LS:N Global: ‘Having a digital twin of a product will soon become a tradable asset and a key part of wardrobe optimisation, worn for social media, a live stream or video call.’

Luxury levels up

The luxury industry has been experimenting with gaming initiatives in recent years, with companies including Louis Vuitton and Burberry creating mini-games as part of their marketing strategies.

In late 2019, Louis Vuitton and Riot Games partnered on a capsule collection to be presented within League of Legends. This in turn enabled an offline opportunity, with exclusive items created as part of the partnership. More recently, Gucci announced a partnership with Tennis Clash, allowing the brand’s vintage tennis logo to gain traction within the gaming world.

New fashion app ADA, by Singaporean-based group Unmatereality, was created to revolutionise the way young people consume luxury. With its combination of 3D gaming and 2D social media functionality, the app allows users to virtually try on clothing, chat and interact with other users, and purchase physical garments within the app. Andy Ku, co-creator of ADA, says: ‘The next big market for fashion isn’t China, it’s virtual commerce.’

'The next big market for fashion isn’t China, it’s virtual commerce'
Andy Gu, co-creator, ADA

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