Why five prominent gaming influencers are teaming up to create the best creative Fortnite experience

Why five prominent gaming influencers are teaming up to create the best creative Fortnite experience

Five prominent gaming influencers are pooling their influence – and money – in an effort to build the first and largest creator-led experience in Epic Games’ growing Fortnite Creative ecosystem.

At last month’s Game Developers Conference, Epic Games announced a number of significant changes to its creator strategy in Unreal Engine and Fortnite Creative, including Creator Economy 2.0, a promise of 40 percent of revenue from “Fortnite’s” creative and battle royales -Distribute modes developers in the game.

Today, April 28th, a group of five leading gaming influencers – SypherPK, Ninja, Nickmercs, TimTheTatman and CouRageJD – announced the development of “Project V”, a custom Fortnite creative game with unique gameplay mechanics and quests linked to the Each creator’s brand are associated fanbase. With their collective fanbase of over 120 million, these developers hope to make Project V the #1 Fortnite creative experience when it is scheduled for release in Q2 2024.

To learn more about the strategy behind “Project V,” Digiday spoke to Ali “SypherPK” Hassan and his wife and business partner Daniela Ali, the CEO of SypherPK’s Fortnite Creative development company Oni Studios, for an annotated Q&A.

This interview has been edited and condensed for length and clarity.

On the role of Epic’s Creator Economy 2.0 in launching the company

Ali “SypherPK” Hassan:

Me and my team have been in the creative scene for a while, releasing maps and such. But when they unveiled the Unreal Editor for Fortnite and the new Creator program at GDC, I started thinking. Funnily Ninja was there, Tim was there, CouRage was there and Nick tweeted about it when they did the GDC stream. That same day I started calling her and I thought, ‘Let’s see if we can team up. Let’s gather the Avengers.” We quickly agreed to work together on a project like this.

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At this point, the writing is on the wall: Epic appears to be building a creator economy in Fortnite Creative to rival that of Roblox, the virtual experiences platform that paid out over $500 million to in-game developers in 2021. The most successful experiences within Roblox, including games like Adopt Me and Brookhaven, aren’t necessarily the most well-tuned games — they’re the ones that got in early. Brookhaven was founded in April 2020 as Roblox user numbers skyrocketed during the Covid-19 pandemic and players have visited the experience over 30.2 billion times over the past few years. Launching their company just weeks after Epic’s announced changes, the creators of Project V are preparing to be the first players in this new ecosystem.

About the relationship between Epic Games and the creators of “Project V”

Daniela Ali:

Epic loves SypherPK. He truly was the mentor that taught much of the world how to play Fortnite when it first started, and he holds a special place in their hearts for doing so. Ali [Hassan] went to their headquarters and was part of the company’s annual review. He’s the community voice for Epic and we’ve developed a very strong relationship with them – we really love everyone there.

And when we drew their attention to this project, they immediately took the opportunity to help us, because even they don’t know what something like this could look like. From the start they are willing to offer resources to give us instruction and training on their new engine. You are very interested in a cooperation.

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Epic’s GDC announcements made it clear that the company is willing to share more of its Fortnite earnings with in-game developers if it means those developers accepting the game developer’s vision for the Metaverse.

Ali’s response mentions that Epic has shared training and other resources with Hassan and his team. This type of collaboration between game developers and their top influencers is relatively common. As the creators of Project V build their experience over the next year, they’ll likely capitalize on their close relationship with Epic Games by educating themselves and maybe even previewing upcoming tools and features.

How the Project V team is inspired by top Roblox experiences

Ali “SypherPK” Hassan:

We’re 100 percent looking at a lot of UGC stuff in Roblox and what’s currently in Fortnite. We want to understand what people like to play, so a big part of our initiative, especially over the next few months, is connecting with audiences on social media. Eventually we will start a discord. We really want to see feedback on what people are playing right now – what the numbers at Roblox and Fortnite Creative are showing, and also what people are craving that isn’t necessarily out there right now.

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Roblox is the blueprint for a vibrant in-game creator economy, so it makes sense that Hassan and his partners would take inspiration from top Roblox experiences like Brookhaven. But while Roblox currently has the lead, the advanced capabilities of the Unreal Engine mean Fortnite Creative has a significant advantage in terms of the potential depth and aesthetic beauty of its in-game experiences. Hassan cited the sheer number of video games currently being built in the popular game engine as one of his reasons for choosing to develop within Fortnite — and when developers like Hassan start building Fortnite Creative’s virtual world, they will her fans inevitably follow.

About the strategy of the makers to promote “Project V”.

Daniela Ali:

It’s an important part that each creator actually participates in this project, but it’s also important to have a well thought out and executed strategy from Oni Studios to allow each creator to tap into all the different industries that they play in. We’re very excited about the ways we can make the game more accessible to different communities. These guys have a combined reach of 120 million across all their platforms, so I think there’s a million ways for us to leverage all of that.

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Building an immersive virtual space is challenging enough, but getting players to actually walk inside is even harder. Luckily for the developers working on Project V, they have considerable access to the distribution end of Metaverse experiences – the ability of prominent developers to draw their fans’ attention to their bespoke rooms. The creators of Project V’s plan to build a virtual world using Fortnite Creative is bold, but they may actually have the clout to pull it off.

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