Table of Contents
When Nike released the Magista Obra in 2014, it immediately shook up the soccer world with its revolutionary design. The Obra became an instant icon, famous for its mid-cut collar and anatomy-hugging fit. So Nike faced a challenge – how could they improve on such a groundbreaking cleat?
In 2016, Nike answered that question by dropping the Magista Obra 2. This update took the Obra’s trademark elements to the next level. Let’s explore the evolution of the Magista Obra and how the Obra 2 marked the next chapter for this legendary line.
Enhanced Upper Texture
The Obra 2 retained the distinctive one-piece Flyknit upper for that barefoot, sock-like feel. But Nike added some new textures to amplify control and touch in key areas.
The strike zone featured a 3D-inspired raised pattern called NIKESKIN for added friction on the ball. A cushioned finish in the midfoot padded passes and traps. Overall, the new textures enhanced the already supernatural touch Magista wearers enjoyed.
Contoured Speed Ribs
While the Obra collar locked down the ankle, Nike reengineered the upper to better secure the rest of the foot. The Obra 2 introduced contoured speed ribs running horizontally across the strike zone.
These elastic bands hugged the foot to reduce slippage during rapid changes of direction. The ribs also streamlined the striking surface. They played perfectly into the Obra ethos of unrivaled fit and control in a soccer cleat.
Stud Configuration Tweaks
The Obra 2 outsole kept the conical stud shapes but rearranged them for greater traction. The forefoot chevron studs became more pronounced to dig into the turf upon acceleration.
The revised alignment focused on facilitating quick release from the ground for immediate changes of pace and direction. As with the upper, the sole adjustments enhanced the Obra’s strengths even further.
Nike unleashed a suite of vibrant new colorways to coincide with the Obra 2’s launch. Radiant Orbit and Total Crimson designs introduced fiery shades of red and orange.
A Ghost Green palette swapped out the typical black for an earthy dark green. The bright Volt stud tips remained to provide that iconic pop. The Obra 2 delivered creativity and flair both in performance and appearance.
Built For Agility
Like the original Obra, the Obra 2 catered perfectly to quick and agile attacking players. The contours and textures worked together to stabilize the foot during cuts, stops, and rapid direction changes.
The Obra 2 offered midfield maestros like David Silva unmatched close control when receiving passes in tight spaces. Meanwhile, the traction and stud pressure afforded rapid acceleration for counterattacking.
The Obra 2 embodied responsive and instinctive play. Defenders were left in the dust against the quicksilver cuts and movements it provided.
Cushioning From heel to Toe
A full-length micro-injected Phylon midsole provided responsive cushioning from heel strike to toe-off. This soft foam conformed perfectly to the individual foot shape.
Combined with the plush Flyknit upper, the Phylon midsole made the Obra 2 the most comfortable Magista yet. Nike crafted a cleat that felt as good hours into a match as it did taking the opening whistle.
ACC Remains an Option
As with the original Obra, Nike offered two versions of the Obra 2 – one with All Conditions Control (ACC) technology and one without. ACC provided raised dots on the upper for superior control in wet conditions.
But the Obra 2 took things even further by allowing players to retroactively add ACC. Customization at Nike stores made it possible to adapt the boots as needed.
This innovative concept demonstrated Nike’s commitment to tailoring the Magista line to each athlete’s specific preferences.
Breaking Down Flyknit
One of the most revolutionary technologies behind the Magista’s success was Flyknit. This was a technique Nike pioneered in the world of running shoes. But what exactly is it and what made it so groundbreaking?
Flyknit involves knitting polyester yarn to create a seamless, sock-like upper material. This “second skin” conforms to the foot shape anatomically. The Magista became the first soccer cleat to adopt Flyknit.
Knitting the upper allowed for micro-level precision impossible with cut and sew methods. Flyknit reduced waste and stretched or contracted where needed. It brought unprecedented fit and feel.
Traction Through Pivots
The Magista Obra 2 outsole focused heavily on traction through lateral cuts and quick changes of direction. Several stud types worked together to achieve this:
- Conical forefoot studs gripped when pushing off for acceleration.
- Chevron-shaped studs on the medial/lateral sides provided grip through cuts.
- A bladed heel stud and triangular stud offered stability for pivots and redirects.
This combination allowed complete freedom of movement in all directions. The stud arrangement aligned perfectly with the Magista Obra 2’s agility-focused ethos.
Obra vs Obra 2
While the Magista Obra 2 retained the fundamentals of its predecessor, it still improved key elements:
- New upper textures heightened control and touch.
- Contoured speed ribs added lockdown through quick movements.
- Studs were reconfigured for greater release and rotation.
- A fresh midsole improved cushioning and comfort.
These incremental changes optimized the strengths of an already phenomenal cleat. Nike showed restraint and precision by refining rather than overhauling.
Built For Playmakers
The Magista Obra 2 catered to creative, quick-thinking playmakers across the midfield. The anatomical fit provided a barefoot feel for Manipulating the ball fluidly in tight spaces.
The Obra 2 collar secured the ankle to allow clean receiving and distribution. The responsive sole gave the acceleration needed to carve defenses open on the counter.
From box-to-box midfielders to crafty number 10s, the Obra 2 delivered the tools to run the show creatively. Its balance of control, traction, and fit aligned with midfield orchestrators.
One unique aspect of the Magista Obra 2 was the ACC customization offered. ACC (All Conditions Control) provided raised dots on the upper for superior control on wet pitches.
But Nike allowed standard Obra 2s to be retrofitted with ACC. This meant players could adapt the boots as needed between matches. It was a prime example of Nike’s innovative approach with the Magista line.
The Magista Obra 2 will be remembered for retaining the elements that made the Obra an instant icon while also incrementally improving its most crucial aspects.
It embodied the Obra ethos of pushing design boundaries while honoring fundamental strengths. Nike has continued evolving the Magista line since the Obra 2, but the model still stands out as a creative high water mark.
When a cleat has an instantaneous impact like the original Magista Obra, the thought of change can be daunting. But Nike executed perfectly with the Obra 2 by enhancing key elements rather than overhauling them.
The Obra 2 stands out as a shining example of how to build upon previous success. It embodies the iterative process of refinement and improvement. The Obra story represents continuous evolution by one of soccer’s most visionary brands.