Best gaming brand collaborations
The cross-over between gaming’s most iconic brands and characters has a long history of creating some great and iconic designs. We have taken a look at past and present tie-ins and have picked the ones we find the most fun!
Nintento and Lego
There has been a long collaboration between Lego and Nintendo with the latest series of Lego games series all being released on Nintendo Switch. But is the iconic Super Mario characters that have now been re-created in Lego brining a new way for kids to ‘control’ Mario as a Lego character, fighting enemies and collecting coins. You can build brick based challenges that let you create your own Mario worlds with different character sets and expansion sets as well as power-up packs.
With the 35th anniversary falling in 2020 Lego have gone one better and for the Mario fans in all of us they have created a Lego NES so you can re-live the memories of Mario on iconic NES system with the cartridges and gameplay all re-created in Lego!
Nike and Playstation
Nike has a history of creating sneakers that tie-in to the gaming world with their Pacman and Ms Pacman dropping in 2009 which are now trading as highly collectable editions in the secondary market.
Perhaps two of the most iconic sneakers to come from a gaming collaboration that Nike have developed have been the two designed with Paul George.
Paul George was a massive gamer and in 2018, excited by his NBA 2k gameplay on PS4 and the ability to simulate what he did on court, he collaborated with Sony to develop the PG2 shoe. The PG2 was George’s second signature shoe (a follow-up to the PG1), and featured light-up tongues bearing the PlayStation and PG logos. Buttons inside the tongues let you turn the lights on or off and had a pulse mode where the lights flicker and vibrate, to emulate a PlayStation Dual Shock controller.
Blown away by the response to the original shoe, Paul George, Nike and Playstation couldn’t resist a second chance to collaborate. This time they went back to the early days of console gaming taking their design queues from the original Playstation. The PG 2.5 kept many of the elements fans loved but went with a grey colourway to match the console.
George said at the launch “The tongues of the shoe still have the PG and PlayStation logos that light up and pulsate blue, but this time we added the original four-color PlayStation logo that lights up on the other side of the tongue. The strap across the top front of each shoe provides stability to really lock you in. The iconic PlayStation symbols are embossed in patent leather on each shoe, just like on the original PG2 PlayStation colorway.”
Seiko and Street Fighter
Based on iconic characters from Capcom’s Street Fighter series, the collaboration created 6 limited edition Seiko 5 Sports timepieces, each one filled with the small details of each character. Streetfighter launched nearly 30 years ago and has sold in excess of 40 million copies across multiple platforms with Street Fighter V being released in 2016.
The Seiko 5 Sports Street Fighter V Limited Edition series consists of six models ranging from clean and sporty to outrageously wild, each inspired by a classic “Street Fighter” character: Ryu, Ken, Chun-Li, Guile, Zangief, and Blanka. The design of each watch takes the colours, design queues and style of the charater with the caseback of each one having the etching of an iconic charater move – like Ken’s “Shoryuken” punch or Chun-Li’s “Spinning Bird Kick.”
Puma and Tetris
Both Puma and Tetris are children of the 1980’s with Puma launching its RS Sneaker in 1986 and Tetris, which celebrated the 35th anniversary of its launch in 2019. The Puma range that launched features elements of the iconic Tetris pieces and colours. For the line-up, Puma used its RS 9.8 and RS-X sneakers, which feature design elements that hark back to Puma’s past while hinting at its future.
In parallel to the sneakers dropping Puma launched clothing as part of the brand tie-up. A Puma Tetris Tee as well as track trousers and jacket .
Nintendo and Uniqlo
In 2017 Uniqlo centred their global t-shirt design competition (UTGP17) around Nintendo asking entrants to create their take on the iconic characters. It was Uniqlo’s most subscribed competition with over 16,000 people entering designs. Country winners were selected and the top 3 having their designs produced.
Moving into 2019 the two brands collaborated again on a new range of Tees with the launch of the Super Mario Family Museum graphic print collection, which was an homage to well-loved characters and moments from Mario's generations-long story.
With 2020 being the 35th anniversary for Super Mario, the two brands were back with a new collaboration launching a range of graphic tees for adults and kid’s size tees and shorts with some new takes on the iconic characters.
Mattel and Nintendo & Psyonix
Since the creation of the first Hot Wheels car, toy car enthusiasts have dreamt of taking cars off jumps, driving through an inverted loop and even playing sports using their coolest looking vehicles.
There has been a history of collaboration between Mattel, the makers of HotWheels, with those of you who remember the N64 console may recall playing the Hotwheels Turbo Racing game.
In 2017 the two companies partnered again, this time to create a set of die cast replica cars using all the favourite characters from the Super Mario series of games. They also created a set of different tracks and extensions that let you build your own tracks with vehicle launchers, obstacles and inverted loops you could emulate all the fun of Mario Kart with toy cars.
In 2018 when Psyonix, the makers of Rocket League collaborated with Mattel, the iconic HotWheels cars were created in the game but in parallel a table top version of Rocket League was developed so HotWheels fans could use their cars for real-world gameplay. A mini table top stadium kept the ball in play and the cars were controlled through Bluetooth from a phone or tablet, so no remote controllers were needed. Hours of fun!