A sleepy London town may not be a place for a street fighting man, as Mick Jagger has pointed out, but Cloverdale soon will be.
Or at least on 60 Avenue inside Elements Casino, whose new eSports Lounge opens next month with an inaugural Street Fighter V Tournament.
The 190-seat facility will aim to attract a growing audience of people who enjoy watching or playing electronic sports, also known as eSports, and provide a gathering place for fans of competitive video gaming. There are five key genres that make up the bulk of video games that are often referred to as eSports: first-person-shooter (FPS), real-time strategy (RTS), multiplayer online battle arena (MOBA), fighting games and sports simulation.
Registration opens Nov. 15 to compete in the Dec. 3 Capcom Cup digital MMA tourney, which is put on in partnership with a company called Spawn Point and offers $1500 in prizes.
“We are absolutely thrilled about this opportunity and ecstatic to be the first casino in Canada to welcome and embrace the eSports culture,” said general manager Michael Kim. “I am confident that our dedicated Elements eSports Lounge will deliver an additional entertainment experience for our guests who are seeking another form of leisure or activity.”
Street Fighter V players will also have the opportunity to engage in battle in Rashid Stage while standing atop the wings of an airplane on a new stage called “Skies of Honor” that was announced on its Facebook page Nov. 8. Combatants will still be able to jump atop the wings while fighting and not simply fall to their deaths. The Skies of Honor map costs $3.99 USD and it can also be bought in the Street Fighter shop for 70,000 Fight Money.
Make-believe sports have become a booming business. It is projected that there will be roughly 145 million eSports enthusiasts worldwide in 2017, and total revenue for 2016 is projected to be $275 million in North America, according to a recent report by Newzoo.
Admission to the event is free and open only to people 19 or older.