When Rashed Singaby, Principal at HOK, was contacted by a former client about how an existing stadium could be retrofitted to host esports events, he immediately knew this was an opportunity to create a blueprint for a type of space that has never existed before. Singaby and his team formulated a small research group to test and understand both the standards for each type of esports game and classify them into operational substructures. Since each game requires its own type of setup, it was important to ultimately conceptualize the design ideas and make recommendations for how existing spaces could be modified in order to best consume and be involved in the experience of esports activities. From the small scale of the ergonomics of a gaming chair, all the way to understanding what it means to host an esports festival from a high-level experiential aspect, the HOK team quickly became leading subject matter experts in developing this emerging universe that could run in parallel to their already highly successful and innovative traditional sports practice. “We knew this was a new market and after we looked at the number of fans, gamers, and the revenue this was generating compared to the lack of structure, we realized this was a great opportunity to design something new,” said Singaby.
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