Want to feel old? Right now, the top slot on Billboard’s World Digital Song Sales chart isn’t occupied by Drake, Rihanna, or Kanye.
It’s held by K/DA — a virtual band from the video game League of Legends.
The group is composed of real-life pop singers who perform as digitized characters — and they’re part of a long-running attempt by Riot Games (the maker of League of Legends) to churn out hit music.
A secondary purpose: ‘skin’ sales
The slickly made music videos that accompany these songs are great ads for skins — outfits and accessories that players buy in the game.
After showing off a neon outfit in the “Pop/Stars” music video, League of Legends put it up for sale within the game. Players pay $10 to $20 a pop for virtual Louis Vuitton outfits worn by True Damage.
Video games have yet to pump out Billie Eilish-level stars
But their slow march into the music biz could set the stage for a much bigger culture shift. Pretty soon, video game-produced performances might be all over the music and movie charts.
We aren’t that far off from musicians signing onto a Fortnite record label or actors appearing on Fortnite-created TV shows.