Right now, every company in the world is scrambling to announce something with the word “metaverse” in its pitch. Scrambling because it’s essential this be done before anyone actually works out what a “metaverse” might be, and all the wind comes out of it like stale air from a forgotten Whoopee Cushion. Two such companies are Epic and Lego, who have just declared they’re working together to “shape the future of the metaverse to make it safe and fun for children.” Urk.
“The two companies will team up,” says the freshly released press release, “to build an immersive, creatively inspiring and engaging digital experience for kids of all ages to enjoy together.”
If you are asking what that means or what it might look like, good question. But that’s not enough empty-minded buzzwords, so it immediately continues,
The family-friendly digital experience will give kids access to tools that will empower them to become confident creators and deliver amazing play opportunities in a safe and positive space.
Wait a second! [Record scratch.] Maybe I’ve been too hasty. Are they saying they’re planning to make an online Lego game?! This is groundbreaking stuff, people. Unless you count 2010's Lego Universe (RIP), Lego Minifigures Online (RIP), Lego Legends of Chima Online (RIP), Lego Worlds (still alive!)...
The nonsense buzz-phrase “the metaverse” right now means, “shared online spaces with avatars,” like those haven’t already existed for decades. And since their inception, they absolutely flat-out have not been spaces that are safe for children. Nor will they ever be, because if such spaces are designed to be inhabited by children, they will always be preyed upon and exploited by people you want nowhere near your kids. But Epic are ever the optimists.
The press release says of this project, “The LEGO Group and Epic Games will combine their extensive experience to ensure that this next iteration of the internet is designed from the outset with the wellbeing of kids in mind.”
That’s quite the extraordinary claim! The company is not talking about some game here. It appears to be claiming some sort of frontline position in developing the internet.
Read the full article on Kotaku