Over 450 million people will view an eSports event in 2019, and while many of those people will watch online, design firm HOK, and SAP, a software company, have released a new report exploring the future of the eSports venue, one that blends online connectivity with a physical space.
“Purpose-built venues have historically had a significant impact in establishing a sport in a culture and community,” said Nuno Guerreiro, architect at HOK and co-author of the report, in a release. “Because of the length of these events and technological requirements, e-sports have a unique audience seeking more connected, hands-on experiences. Architects and designers have an opportunity to rethink every aspect of the traditional sports and entertainment environment—from a building’s location and form down to the seat.”
The report touches on some key design features such as:
— A non-traditional seating bowl
— An immersive environment
— Reimagined geometries and spatial organization
— More intimacy
— A blending of technology with the built environment
— Hospitality-driven experiences
The blending of technology with the built environment is especially important, as eSports viewers tend to be younger, tech-savvy individuals who are not willing to completely forgo the digital experience eSports offers to physically attend an event. Seats that have connectivity for VR headsets and the ability for a digital avatar to sit within the physical bowl of an arena are just some features the design firm is exploring
For the full report, click here.