As the likes of Forbes and Celebrity Cruises have recently demonstrated, the metaverse is on-track to becoming the go-to medium for turning seemingly ‘physical’ events into more convenient, efficient, and accessible ‘virtual’ ones.
And with the New Year on the horizon- a celebration which billions of people across the globe participate in- there’s no better time for such tech to be leveraged, as although we may be constrained by the timezone and location we’re in, the metaverse allows global communities to welcome-in the new year collectively, in style, and without any physical restrictions.
With this in mind, we’ve compiled a list of the most anticipated New Year’s Eve metaverse parties of 2022/2023.
The Shaq-tacular Spectacular
The first party to take note of is ‘The Shaq-tacular Spectacular,’ which, if you hadn’t already guessed, is being hosted by NBA ‘Hall of Famer’ Shaquille O’Neal.
The hour-long event will take place in Meta’s metaverse platform Horizon Worlds, with attendees being able to experience it in virtual reality (VR) using Meta’s ‘Quest’ VR headsets (via Meta Quest TV).
It’ll feature music performances from the likes of Cardi B, Ludacris, Lil Yachty, Whipped Cream, Killer Mike, and of course Shaq himself (who will be playing a DJ set under the moniker ‘DJ Diesel’). NFL legend Rob Gronkowski will also be in virtual attendance, as well as model Camille Kostek.
Such performances will take place on the event’s main stage, with other amusements coming in the form of a roller rink, basketball court, a marching band, cheerleaders, and dance-offs which VR users can replicate.
“This year we’re ringing in 2023 with new experiences and connections. I’m excited to celebrate with some of my favorite artists and athletes in a way that you can enjoy with friends and family in VR across the world.”
Shaquille O’Neal, NBA legend & pop culture icon
“From music, laughs and much more, we’re celebrating New Year’s Eve and welcoming 2023 with a spectacular party you won’t want to miss!”
The event is a production of Westbrook Media, Media.Monks and O’Neal’s Jersey Legends Productions (in partnership with Meta), and will commence on December 31st at 3:30 p.m. PT in Meta Horizon Worlds and on Meta Quest TV.
Virtual New Year’s Eve
For the second year running, the New Year’s Eve Ball Drop Celebration will be taking place via the One Times Square metaverse … but this time via two immersive experiences.
The first is entitled Virtual New Year’s Eve (VNYE), which can be accessed via its namesake app and website.
Here, attendees will be able to explore a virtual manifestation of New York’s Times Square, play three immersive games (Nature World, Dance World, and Zero G), and view live streams of physical New Year’s Eve celebrations across the globe.
Such experience will include Wonderama’s live family-friendly broadcast, which will conclude with the New Year’s Eve Ball Drop Celebration in Times Square.
To explore, users will be able to create personalized virtual avatars, where across their navigations, they will be tasked with collecting confetti to earn points for additional avatar customisations, as well as visiting the observation deck at One Times Square to view the virtual world from above.
Come the turn of the year, users will experience an iconic virtual Ball Drop Celebration and fireworks show, with VNYE also offering nine live camera feeds from NYC’s actual Times Square, as well as two EarthCam live streams which capture New Year’s Eve celebrations on a global scale.
Jamestown, which is the owner of One Times Square, has also taken Times Square replication into the Decentraland metaverse platform. In the heart of such depiction is a 26-story tower (-111,-113) which will be hosting MetaFest 2023– a musical bonanza brought to you in partnership with Metakey.
Excitement awaits with activities and features for all!— Metakey: Wishing you happy holidays✨ (@themetakey) December 22, 2022
🏙️ Explore around the soaring cityscape
📸 Strut down the red carpet
🎵 Enjoy music from exclusive DJs @Defector_Dan, @SoultryDubs, @category5music & Kharma! pic.twitter.com/Qo7FR7FeI2
Starting at 11pm ET on December 31st, the event will be jam-packed with music, activities and festivities, with DJ sets coming from the likes of DJ GucciToe, DJ SoultryDubs, DJ Kharma, and DJ Category 5.
In addition to showing off their moves on the dance floor (using the platform’s innovative Emotes), attendees will also be able to explore the location’s soaring cityscape, play an array of interactive games, enjoy free wearables, and of course, watch the iconic Ball Drop countdown.
“Virtual experiences like VNYE and MetaFest add a new, immersive dimension to the iconic celebration that is New Year’s Eve in Times Square and is a glimpse of what’s to come at One Times Square.”
“We believe the future will be defined by the thoughtful integration of the virtual and physical worlds, optimized for user experience. We continue to reimagine how spaces and events like New Year’s Eve can be experienced by leveraging the power of AR/VR technologies, Web3, and virtual activations”- Michael Phillips, President of Jamestown and Owner of One Times Square.
The Sandbox’s ‘Midnight In The Metaverse’
And finally, Decentraland’s fellow metaverse leader The Sandbox is also getting involved with New Year’s Eve festivities.
Rock out your new year at the number one ☝️ club in the #metaverse!— The Sandbox (@TheSandboxGame) December 27, 2022
Show us your moves and enjoy the party with the likes of @steveaoki @TheOfficialA7X @suecothechild @ParisHilton @deadmau5 and @blond_ish! pic.twitter.com/jeYRRxk2TV
‘Midnight in the metaverse’ takes place at the platform’s ‘Club XYZ’ from December 27th 2022 to January 3rd 2023, with each attendee being able to receive an NFT and ‘memorabilia’ reward if they tweet a screenshot of their avatar at the location.
To celebrate the closing of the year, the club will be hosting DJ sets and live performances from the likes of Paris Hilton, deadmau5, BLOND:ISH, DJ Steve Aoki, Avenged Sevenfold, and Sueco.
‘Midnight in the metaverse’ is accompanied by five other events (which collectively make up ‘Season’s Greetings)- a ‘Main Event,’ ‘Avatar & LAND Pass,’ ‘Care Bear Avatar Pass,’ ‘Social Challenges,’ and a ‘Mystery Box Event’.
All-in all, there is a reward pool of 250,000 $SAND (worth almost $100,000 at current prices), 3 NFTs, 2 collectibles and one ‘Mystery Box’ up for grabs across the 14-day period.
For the large majority of us who don’t reside in a metropolitan epicenter, world-renown New Year’s Eve celebrations are largely inaccessible due to the physical and monetary constraints in play.
This is why the above events- as well as the various others across the Web2 and Web3 worlds- serve as astute methods for ensuring that a truly global audience can get involved in the world’s biggest celebration… and not only those who’re lucky enough to live near them.
THE ART MEMES @6529ArtMemes – New Drop –— PeterArt18.eth 🇺🇦 (@PeterArt18) December 30, 2022
A @wildalps x @PeterArt18 mixed media collab
featuring @punk6529 The Memes & @OM100m
Claim open until Jan 14th 2023
More memes below🔗⤵️ pic.twitter.com/MKfkIE3TzV
Conclusively, democratization is what’s achieved here, as once again, the metaverse is demonstrating its ability to sever physical limitations in order to offer world-class, highly relevant, and innovative experiences to all (or all those with a suitable device and internet connection).
Either way, whichever type of celebration you decide to attend- be it virtual, physical, or perhaps none- the Blockster team wishes you a happy and incredibly bullish 2023, and we also look forward to continuing our coverage of Web3’s biggest pioneers, creators, and disruptors throughout the new year (and beyond).