China has got world’s first sports arena built exclusively for Esports!
A new indoor stadium has emerged in Chongqing, Western China, but it’s not for basketball, volleyball, swimming, badminton or any other indoor sports. Surprised?
The game, for which the stadium has been built, boasts of high numbers of online viewership than NBA. The game is also being considered by IOC and other stakeholders for inclusion in Tokyo 2020 Olympics. The guess cannot get more obvious.
Yes, it’s Esports!
Esports fans and gamers now have a big reason to rejoice with the world’s first ever indoor stadium built exclusively for Esports.
The Zhongxian E-Sports Stadium, the first dedicated entirely to professional video gaming, has been designed by Hong Kong architect Barrie Ho. The phase one of the stadium was completed in December 2017. The 60,000 sq-ft stadium is slated to be fully completed by the middle of 2018 and will have 20,000 seating capacity.
The stadium, located in Chongqing, Western China, has curtain glass walls lined by transparent LED screens that turn the entire building into an enormous video display for those unable to get a seat inside. The stadium has two wing-shaped halls extending out from an arena with 7,000+ seating capacity.
The design, according to Barrie Ho, also serves a more utilitarian purpose since the atmosphere of e-sports competition demands lots of flexible space for fans to gather. Along with an outdoor plaza, the wings can accommodate an additional 13,000 people on top of those seated in the arena.
“Everybody thinks e-sports is about two people playing a game online. It’s not like that. It’s like a carnival,” South China Morning Post report has quoted Ho as saying.
Over the years, esports has gained worldwide popularity from the millennials and good traction from sponsors and investors around the world. According to a market tracking company Newzoo projects, over 427 million people will be watching competitive video gaming next year. China has over 600 million gamers accounting for about a quarter of the world’s US$101 billion video games and esports industry
Intel Extreme Masters held in Katowice, Poland, was adjudged the most-watched esports event last year with over 46 million viewers. In 2014, more than 45,000 fans crowded into Seoul’s World Cup Stadium to watch the League of Legends World Championship. Last summer, each of the nearly 20,000 seats in Toronto’s Air Canada Centre were sold out for three days of competitions. Video game company Blizzard Entertainment has already opened dedicated e-sports halls in Taipei and Los Angeles