Yet another historic move in the bag!
The highest-paid female athlete ever with over $57 million in earnings, the first black woman athlete to grace the cover of Sports Illustrated (SI) Swimsuit Edition, and now, tennis superstar Naomi Osaka has rewritten the history books as the first female athlete to join Fortnite’s Icon series of skins!
This new partnership with the battle-royal mobile game dubs the activist and athlete the honours as the first female athlete to get her own Fortnite skin.
In a statement posted to their website, developers Epic Games said: “An inspiration to many, Naomi Osaka — tennis champion, activist, fashion designer, and entrepreneur — is soon taking on her next challenge. And you get to join her on the adventure! Naomi Osaka’s dropping onto the Fortnite Island as the latest member of the Icon Series, with her Outfits and accessories becoming available Thursday, March 3, 2022, at 7 PM ET.”
“There are many sides to Naomi Osaka. Refusing to be defined by any one thing, Naomi brings this spirit of individuality with her to Fortnite. Display some of her influences with the fantastical designs of two Naomi Outfits! Also, polish your forehand and approach with matching accessories for each of them.”
The Japanese-born Naomi – who is the first Asian player to hold the top ranking in singles and four-time Grand Slam singles champion is joining the game with two new outfits — the Naomi Osaka and Dark Priestess outfits — inspired by her Japanese and Haitian heritage. They were both designed with help from her sister, Mari. The “Naomi Osaka Outfit” is comprised of the “Royale Racket Pickaxe/Back Bling” and “Dark Priestess Naomi Outfit” comes with the “Portalforger Paddle Pickaxe/Back Bling,” according to Hypebae.
“I’ve been playing Fortnite for a long time — when I saw LeBron had joined the Icon Series, it made me want to join the Fortnite family, too,” Osaka in a statement. “It’s really amazing to be able to connect with so many people around the world.”
“The Icon Series is the ultimate celebration of the most dynamic figures in culture for Fortnite’s audience of millions, and there’s no one more perfect than Naomi Osaka to join the series as the first female athlete,” Nate Nanzer, global vice president of partnerships at Epic Games, said in a statement.
In the history of the series, other female creators have been featured such as Zendaya, with two skins immortalizing her characters from Spider-Man and Dune. Osaka will also join fellow athlete LeBron James, whom she says inspired her to get in on the adventure.
“I’ve been playing Fortnite for a long time—when I saw LeBron had joined the Icon series, it made me want to join the Fortnite family, too. It’s really amazing to be able to connect with so many people around the world,” she shared.
In an Instagram post, Osaka announced her partnership with the video game series, thanking Fortnight for giving her the opportunity to “tell my story in my own words.”