If there’s one event gamers and e-sports enthusiasts don’t want to miss, it’s DreamHack, the world’s largest digital gaming festival. On 21 December, this gaming extravaganza is coming to India, marking its entry into Asia for the first time.
Founded in Sweden in 1994 as a “bring your own computer” (BYOC) local area network (LAN) party, DreamHack has previously been staged in places such as Atlanta, Valencia, Marseilles and Stockholm. The festival brings gamers and digital natives together for a three-day weekend filled with various competitions—a 24-hour-a-day LAN party, e-sports gaming tournaments and BYOC competitions.
The first Asian edition of the festival is being organized by the Gurugram-based e-sports company Nodwin Gaming and will offer prizes to the tune of ₹ 1 crore. Apart from trying their hands at leading games such as Dota and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, gamers will also get a chance to experience a retro zone, which will feature arcade machines with classic games such as Pinball, Tetris and Mario Bros.
The Asian region, especially India, could prove to be an interesting proposition for gaming festivals like DreamHack. According to a report on the gaming habits of Indian millennials, published by Pune-based digital entertainment and gaming company JetSynthesys in August, India is expected to have 310 million gamers out of 735 million internet users by 2021.
The report adds that the amount spent on mobile games worldwide is expected to grow from $50 billion in 2016 to $105 billion in 2021. Gaming on hand-held devices has surpassed PC and console gaming by a significant margin over the past few years. Interest in gaming events will only grow as millennials engage more with avenues such as real money gaming, augmented and virtual reality game forms.
DreamHack-Mumbai will be held from 21-23 December at the Goregaon Exhibition Centre.