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Is Online Gaming the Future of Fashion?

Most fashion labels already communicate with customers across multiple social media channels, but online gaming is a territory still being explored—most recently by DKNY. The digitally savvy brand has been developing an interactive computer experience with with a company called Fashion Week Live and it's debuting Monday on Facebook.

The program is not your average guns-blowing, bad-guy killing, fanboy experience that most people associate with virtual reality. Instead, it allows members to to create and guide an character through a simulated design/photography/stylist/PR career. Frequent players will be rewarded with simulated job promotions, apartment upgrades and (obviously!) shopping sprees.

"Experience is how much you play," Fashion Week Live's managing director Matthew Primack told WWD about the program "The more you play, the more you learn, the more you learn the more you can develop your skills."

DKNY's new Facebook feature is the latest—and most involved—of many fashion-focused games launched in that last few months. In December, Nike rolled out its "Winter’s Angry Perseverance Campaign," which allowed fans to "assist" athlete avatars and when Norma Kamali launched her spring collection, it came with virtual scavenger hunt. Ultimately, these platforms aim to drive business to each company's e-commerce site, but right now I'm not sure if I want to mix the two. If I'm looking to buy something, I'd rather just browse actual products. Of course, I'm sure I'll still spend a lot of time playing on DKNY's Facebook site, but time will tell if I'll pull out my wallet.

What do you think? Should online shopping become one big game?

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