The esports, or competitive video gaming industry is starting to blow up all across the world. Celebrities like Drake and Michael Jordan have invested in the industry, and even owners of professional …
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The esports, or competitive video gaming industry is starting to blow up all across the world. Celebrities like Drake and Michael Jordan have invested in the industry, and even owners of professional sport franchises like Robert Kraft and the Kroenkes have invested millions in esports. According to a Newzoo Global Esports Market Report, the esports industry has a value of more than $900 million, and Lakewood will soon be home to the largest esports arena in Colorado.
“It’s a huge, huge market, and it’s growing like crazy. Hearing these stars and big names invest in it is confirmation that it’s only going to be growing further,” said Nate Jones, vice president of technology for N3rd Street Gamers.
N3rd Street Gamers, a Philadelphia esports network, is set to open up the Localhost esports arena toward the end of the year. The arena, located at 1882 S. Wadsworth Blvd., is 18,000 square feet, and it will offer 120 custom-built gaming PCs, and video game consoles like Xbox Ones, PlayStation 4s and Nintendo Switches. Localhost will contain a 60-foot stage that will be used for events and tournaments, along with a full-service bar.
“Denver is close to my heart as a place I have traveled to annually for decades,” said John Fazio, founder and CEO of N3rd Street Gamers. “More importantly, it is a strategic location that provides access to one of the country’s strongest and oldest gaming communities.”
Jones described Colorado’s esports scene as passionate, large and active. Some universities even have esports clubs like the University of Northern Colorado. The school competes in video games like League of Legends, Overwatch, Counter Strike and Rocket League with a focus on becoming the best gamers in the country.
N3rd Street Gamers envisions Localhost as being more than a destination for competitive video gamers. It will have table top games and digital and trading card games to cater to other crowds.
Gamers can use the arena for a fee of $3 an hour, with $20 day passes also being available. Localhost will offer most major video game titles including Madden, FIFA, Call of Duty, World of Warcraft and more.
Ryan Barr, the chief experience officer for N3rd Street Gamers, said Localhost Arena will attract events and tournaments from out of state organizers.
“This is something we’ve been working on for a while. Whether you’re a casual gamer, or hardcore, we’ll be able to serve all of those communities,” Jones said.
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