Bruno Mars and Anderson .Paak are going to funk up ‘Fortnite’ with Bootsy Collins

It’s about to get a whole lot funkier in the wilds of Fortnite‘s Battle Royale Island.

Bruno Mars and Anderson .Paak, the modern music superstars bringing classically funky vibes back to the modern soul scene as Silk Sonic, are officially joining the game with an outfit pack based on their collaboration. The ’70s-inspired looks that have been such a staple of their music videos are what you can expect from the Fortnite looks as well, with accessories to match.

While you’ll be able to get both outfits together in a pack, the Bruno Mars outfit includes a “Sound Scepter Pickaxe” harvesting tool that can double as Back Bling (aka Fortnite‘s backpack-like cosmetic items) when it’s not in use. There’s also a “Freedom Wheels” emote that presumably involves roller skates, as well as a mysterious (and no doubt on-brand for Silk Sonic) “reactive style” feature for each outfit.

(If you’re not familiar with Fortnite‘s reactive outfits, all it means is they respond visually to specific behaviors. The Marshmello outfit, for example, lights up in certain spots whenever a player emotes.)

The Silk Sonic pack is coming to Fortnite on Feb. 10 when the item shop resets that day, at 7 p.m. ET. Skilled players will have a chance to get the pack a few days earlier on Feb. 7, when Fortnite hosts the “Silk Sonic Cup” tournament. Competing players who earn at least 8 points during the three-hour Duos-only tournament unlock a Silk Sonic spray. A smaller group of the highest points-earners (the number varies by region) will also get the outfit pack.

You earn points by playing Duos matches in the tournament’s playlist (found in-game under the “Compete” tab). Silk Sonic Cup runs from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. in each matchmaking region. Note that you can change your region in Fortnite‘s Settings menu, so teaming up with friends in other time zones is an option. Here’s a helpful rundown of all the rules from Epic.

Silk Sonic will technically be entering the world of Fortnite one week earlier on Feb. 3 — that’s today if you’re reading this fresh! — when the new Icon Radio station arrives inside the game. This is where the news gets really cool, at least for me: Icon Radio’s host will be none other than the bass-slapping P-Funk legend and Silk Sonic collaborator, Bootsy Collins.

This isn’t a huge leap for the 70-year-old Collins, who fondly looks back on a simpler time for video games in a statement accompanying the news. “Back in the day I was crazy about arcade games, so being able to bridge the worlds of music and gaming with Fortnite is very exciting — both worlds offer players a great way to come together and relax.”

That’s the weird thing about Fortnite, right? It’s a competitive shooter and things get tense sometimes, but it’s also an unusually chill and social experience between those more exciting moments. I’m still a relative newcomer to Epic Games’ take on the wildly popular battle royale sub-genre. The chaos energy it exudes so well is what keeps me coming back most of all, but I’ve fully come to appreciate how easy it is to have full-blown conversations with friends while we’re playing a gun-filled online game.

Back to the news: Icon Radio comes with quite a lineup of tunes. In addition to an assemblage of tracks from Silk Sonic and its duo’s respective solo projects — 20 in all, yes, including “Uptown Funk” — the station also features a spread of hits from Collins (who apparently came up with the name “Silk Sonic”!). Those tracks include the Collins solo hits “I’d Rather Be With You,” “Worth My While,” and “Bootzilla,” as well as two tunes from Parliament (“Tear the Roof Off the Sucker” and “Flashlight”) and one from Funkadelic (“One Nation Under a Groove”).

Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to go relax with some Mothership Connection.

UPDATE: Feb. 3, 2022, 4:15 p.m. EST An earlier version of this story contained incomplete information about the Silk Sonic Cup. We’ve updated the text with more specifics and a link out to the official tournament rules.

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