Esports Is Coming To A (Hoyts) Cinema Near You

From April this year, the Hoyts cinema chain will be opening the first in a series of "esports arenas" in conjunction with the Australian arm of Gfinity Esports.

The first arena, which will house broadcast, production and spectator areas, will open in April at the Hoyts Entertainment Quarter in Sydney's Moore Park. Other venues will be opened later on around the country, supposedly "all within current Hoyts cinema locations".

The first event to use the new venue will be the Australian Gfinity Elite Series, starting early next quarter. That series will showcase Rocket League, Street Fighter 5 and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive. That'll pair with an online league, the Challenger Series, which began last month.

It's not the first time Hoyts has tried to dabble with gaming. Cinemas have held viewing parties for esports finals in the past, like The International or the League of Legends World Championship Series, as well as sessions for E3 conferences and developer Q&A's. It remains to be seen in how many states and territories Hoyts will expand the concept to, although the inclusion of more esports studios - particularly centrally located ones - will be a huge help to the local scene.


Comments

    Hoyts has tried similar with a range of sports over the years. I remember one of the soccer (or football for the purists) World Cups where they showed live games at one of their Sydney cinemas (Pitt St from memory), and for a couple of years they even showed WWE's Wrestlemania on a few select screens.

    When they know their numbers are down, I don't think its a bad idea to try stuff like this. If it doesn't work, they probably don't lose much from the effort, and if it does work, its an added income stream that might hopefully grow over time. With how empty some cinemas are at times, its worth a shot at least.

      Agreed, although I think for some people, if you're going to the effort to leave the house for a game, a pub environment lends to a pretty electrifying atmosphere. The combination of a few beers, the ability to walk around and freedom to speak loudly during pulls in the action are too big of a drawcard for most.
      Cinema could be a bit too restrictive, but unlike the idea in principle. Hopefully it works!

        Generally the cinema is great for families that want to go out and still be in a crowd environment.

        I worked at a cinema that would show the AFL grand final and it was mostly families that would come who didn't want their kids at a pub.

          Ahh, good point. Wouldn't have occurred to me but yeah, that would actually be a fantastic for families.

        The League of Legends Worlds is always sold out at Hoyts... They have an awesome setup where they set up a bar & food outlet at a table the back of the cinema so you can spend your $$ without having to leave the cinema. They also have in cinema commentators (between rounds), giveaways and a huge party atmosphere. I've been going for the last 3 years and can highly recommend it as a must-do experience!

    I have to admit, I wouldn't mind seeing Rocket League in this sort of situation.

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