Video games have been an integral part of popular culture for decades. Since the earliest versions of Pong hit arcades in the 50’s, precluding the gaming phenomena that include Space Invader and Pacman in the 70’s and 80’s, we were happy to invest our spare change in a shot at topping the coveted leader boards. When video games left the designated arcade space and became mobile entities we could play at home, everyone became a competitor. With the introduction of online gaming, our competitive nature went worldwide and nowadays competitive gaming has evolved further, entering its next phase: eSports.
Whilst we used to be content with the ability to enter virtual gaming competitions from the comfort of our own homes, eSports seek to bring together the most capable players from across the globe to battle and compete at Tournaments such as The International, the League of Legends World Championship and the Evolution Championship Series. According to the British eSports Association, there are 36.6 million gamers in the UK, of which 3.1 million are eSports enthusiasts. They also claim that approximately one in ten Brits follow eSports overall. This means that the phenomenon is happening here and now! With a global following, huge sponsors and massive prizes, the future of eSports is promising.
Whilst larger global tournaments are the most recognised in the UK, with the Wembley SSE Arena hosting the League of Legends World Championship and the CSGO ECS finals in the past, there are also up and coming competitions like the ESL UK Premiership, UK Masters and Multiplay Insomnia events happening here. The UK has also produced a number of professional eSports players, like Nate “ATARAXIA” Mark and Ben “CAPTAINTWIG” Knight.
Although the popularity of eSports is evolving in the current age, the origins of the phenomenon dates back to the 70’s. Altari’s Space Invaders tournament in 1980 was one of the most popular recorded gaming events of the time with approximately 10,000 entrants battling to record the highest score. In the modern day, players of League of Legends, Overwatch and Call of Duty fight for global supremacy with streaming platforms like Twitch emerging to connect those who can’t physically be present to the live streams of the most famed players in the industry.
So, how does this contribute to the event industry? As a new need for a physical space emerges in the gaming sector which, until now, was largely virtual, our inflatable structures represent a perfect and portable space for those looking to set up a tournament. With the versatility and portability of inflatable structures, these innovative spaces can be tailored to make group or individual areas that can house players. Our quiet fan technology minimises sound interference meaning that gamers can compete in peace. With branding, lighting, staging and seating inclusive in our pop up packages, the opportunities are endless.