So… this may sound weird to people who don’t follow video game achievements but I attended my first virtual concert this weekend. It was surreal.
Fortnite, a game made by Epic Games has been pushing boundaries since it first came out July 25, 2017 and every day, the developers show they’re not ready to stop pushing boundaries.
The game, which has 8.3 million concurrent players, collaborated with Marshmello, a DJ who is ranked 10 out of 100 for top DJs, according to DJMag.com.
The duo put on the world’s first virtual online concert.
The event was scheduled for 2:00 p.m. EST and lasted roughly 10 minutes in length. Players simply started up Fortnite like any other day, but that day players watched something that would change video game history forever with the first virtual concert.
Normally, players would load into matches of 100 players, scavenge for weapons and fight to be the last player standing.
Around the one-minute mark to the event all weapons, or things that could be used to harm fellow concert-goers and ruin their experience, were removed.
Players became invincible and were forced to enjoy the event with fellow gamers.
There was silence at Pleasant Park (a residential location in Fortnite) for once. No one was dying, no one was shooting.
It was just Fortnite players and a stage with screens that projected a Marshmello logo that slowly grew bigger.
Out of nowhere, lights shot on with an audible *pshoo* and Marshmello’s name appeared on the screen behind the DJ booth, similar to what happens at concerts like Veld or Digital Dreams.
Marshmello slowly came out of the floor on a platform to his DJ booth, music started to fade up, giant teddy bear projections started to praise the sky and dance, you just knew it was about to get cool.
And then, you heard “Yo, what is up Fortnite, what’s up Pleasant Park. My name is Marshmello and thank you for coming out today and making history with me.”
Suddenly there was an animated version of Marshmello in his go-to DJ outfit bouncing around with explosions of confetti, fireworks, and lyrics to the music. Beams of lights lit up the sky.
Marshmello opened with his hit song Alone, and Fortnite players rushed the stage and started using their favourite emotes like The Floss, Hype or Orange Justice to dance in sync.
Once the song was almost built up Marshmello explained, “Alright when this song drops, I want to see everyone jumping with me.”
The song’s beat dropped, fireworks covered the night sky, lights were going every which way and players became affected by low gravity causing everyone to float in the air in a tornado of different Fortnite characters.
It was almost euphoric. It was a video game, but it felt just as if I were at a festival myself. Everyone’s happiness came through the screen.
Giant animated copies of Marshmello were projected onto the dance floor as Marshmello called to the crowd, “Let me see that Marsh Walk” – a dance move Epic Games created for the event.
Roughly 8 minutes into the set, Marshmello’s song Happier came on and just before the beat dropped, Marshmello told the crowd, “When this drops, I want you to let me see you keep it ‘mello.”
As the beat dropped, giant yellow happy face balls with Marshmello’s face on them shot out of the top of the stage allowing the virtual fans to jump around and pass them along just like Veld during the summer.
Overall, this was a monumental moment in gaming history.