"This show is going to be incredibly special, and nothing like users have seen so far," Epic Games head of global partnerships Nate Nanzer said. "J Balvin was the perfect partner to work with to create an unforgettable show as his music appeal is boundless. We are honored to work with him and bring his music to fans worldwide."
Since its launch in 2017, Fortnite has accumulated more than 350 million registered players worldwide, making the online multiplayer game an opportune space for artists looking to expose their music to both new and old fans -- especially with touring on ice due to the global pandemic. While the game itself is free to play, users can purchase virtual merchandise for their avatars such as "skins" (avatar outfits) and "emotes" (the ability to perform expressions, such as dance moves).
Fortnite held its first in-game concert with Marshmello in February 2019, attracting 10.7 million concurrent players worldwide. Travis Scott smashed that record in April with his "Astronomical" in-game concert, which drew 12.3 million concurrent players worldwide at its peak and 27.7 million uniques across five total airings. Since then, Fortnite has continued to step up its concert game -- no pun intended -- with Party Royale performances from the likes of BTS and Major Lazer. The game introduced its "Spotlight" concert series in September, which has featured Dominic Fike and Anderson .Paak. At the time, Nanzer told Billboard that he aims to turn Fortnite into the equivalent of a "tour stop" for artists, and feature acts from a wide range of genres.
Enter Balvin, who promises to further up the ante by implementing cross reality (XR) technology, LED walls and camera tracking for his set, which was pre-recorded at Fortnite's Los Angeles studio. As with most performances, his will also include the launch of a new skin, a take on the Party Trooper Outfit, which is available to purchase from the in-game shop for 1,200 "V-bucks" (roughly $12) from now until Nov. 1 at 8 p.m. ET. All gamers who purchase the outfit and attend the "Afterlife Party" will unlock an exclusive J Balvin style for it.
Check out the event flyer, below.