Under the ambitious Saudi Vision 2030 and National Gaming and Esports Strategy, Saudi Arabia is poised to become the global epicenter of gaming and esports.
In line with this, Qiddiya City is preparing to host the world's first gaming and esports complex, ushering in a new era for the industry. The project is designed to attract 10 million visitors by 2030 and will introduce four esports venues with a total seating capacity of 73,000.
Also read: Prince Faisal says esports is worth $13 billion and adds 40,000 jobs to Saudi economy
A new era of esports and gaming
Qiddiya City, one of Saudi Arabia's new mega-projects, represents a city completely dedicated to play. It represents the intersection of entertainment, sports, and culture and is attractive to Saudi nationals, residents, and tourists from all over the world. This unique destination is in line with the 'Play Life' ethos and suggests a comprehensive year-round calendar of major esports events.
— Qiddiya (@qiddiya_en) December 14, 2023
Boasting the world's largest total video screen area and featuring advanced 4D haptic seating, the arena provides an immersive experience where visitors can feel, feel and smell the action. The 5,155-seat arena is focused on enhancing the audience experience beyond its size. In addition, thorough line-of-sight studies have been conducted to ensure optimal views from every seat. Including a “digital chandelier” at the center greatly improves the delivery of gameplay content.
Rhys Courtney, Senior Principal, Populous EMEA said: highlight They praised the uniqueness of Arena, noting that its scale and user experience are unparalleled in the world of esports. The venue's design philosophy is centered around creating a fantasy world with a general admission experience that includes a gaming zone, food “souk,” retail area, and immersive entertainment zone.
“This arena will be unique within esports, both in scale and user experience.”
A neighborhood designed for gamers and non-gamers alike
Qiddiya City eSports Arena is just one part of a larger, comprehensive gaming and eSports district. The district is not only an event venue but also a permanent home for the world's elite esports clubs. Qiddiya aims to provide up to 25 esports clubs with facilities where they can live, train and compete full-time.
Additionally, the district will serve as the regional headquarters for over 30 major video game companies, further strengthening Saudi Arabia's position in the global gaming world. Spread over 500,000 square meters, the Gaming & Esports District will include gaming space as well as a host of retail, dining, residential and entertainment venues. Mr. Abdullah Al Dawood, Managing Director of QIC, said: emphasize A unique and gaming experience that the city of Qudiya offers to visitors and residents alike.
“Qiddiya City is proud to be home to this innovative gaming and esports district, which will offer a unique and engaging gaming experience for both visitors and residents.”
Setting global standards
With two-thirds of Saudi Arabia's population being gamers, the country aims to become a global gaming and esports hub by 2030. This is a key objective of the national gaming and esports strategy. The Qiddiya City project therefore aims to build a venue and establish a comprehensive ecosystem for gaming and esports. It's about creating a place where gaming is both an activity and a lifestyle.
Shireen Hamdan, Senior Principal and General Manager of Populous KSA, sums up the vision for Qiddiya City eSports Arena, which truly represents Qiddiya’s “Play Life” ethos. This arena and wider precinct will redefine how the world perceives and interacts with gaming and esports.
“The Qiddiya City esports arena will be a state-of-the-art esports venue at the heart of this great global gaming hub and the perfect expression of Qiddiya’s ‘play life’ ethos.”
As Saudi Arabia advances its vision, one question remains. Will Qiddiya City reshape the global gaming and esports landscape as we know it? The answer lies in the development of this venture that is changing the face of entertainment, sports, and culture around the world .