ESL And ICS Festival Service Partner To Open Esports Arena At Wacken Open Air Germany

Wacken Open Air
Wacken Open Air
– Wacken Open Air
The world’s largest gathering of metal heads and the world’s larges esports company want to give fans the best of both worlds: music and gaming

The world’s largest metal gathering and the world’s largest esports company are opening an esports Village on Wacken Open Air grounds during the festival.
The ESL Arena will open on Aug. 1, with the festival officially launching the next day and running until Aug. 4. It is going to be a themed experience “that brings the music and esports worlds together at a music festival for the first time,” according to the announcement by festival promoter ICS.
Aside from a free-2-play area for festivalgoers, there will be daily amateur tournaments and exhibition matches with the participation of professional teams and even some bands, although ICS couldn’t confirm the participating musicians at press time.
ICS CEO Holger Hübner believes this project addresses the rising interest in esports content worldwide. “Like many games, heavy metal creates fantasy worlds. Sabaton’s collaboration with World of Tanks is just one example of how much the two categories have in common,” he explained.
According to the ICS team, surveys in the metal scene have confirmed a great interest in gaming and esports themes. Hübner added, “naturally, music remains at the heart of Wacken Open Air, but we have a very close relationship with our community, so we can react to developments. We’re always open to new ideas.
“Of course, it also makes us proud to be pioneering the world’s first esports theme experience at a music festival, so we are very glad to have ESL as a most capable partner that is setting the international standard in esports.”
The Wacken Open Air festival site
Wacken Open Air
– The Wacken Open Air festival site
This year, a gaming arena will take up 1,800 square foot of it

ESL organizes and runs high-end, branded international and national leagues and tournaments like the Intel Extreme Masters, ESL One, ESL Championship, ESL Arena and other major events in stadiums around the world.
The popular esports disciplines, such as “Dota 2,” “Counter-Strike: Global Offensive,” “StarCraft II” and “League of Legends,” regularly fill large arenas, and the content produced on site is broadcasted on all relevant channels to reach fans across the world. In 2017 alone, ESL claims to have reached more than 400 million unique viewers across the popular channels with its live events.
The company’s CEO Ralf Reichert said: “The medium of computer games is more and more mainstream in all areas of life, as the music has been now for many years. An iconic, multi-day music festival like Wacken is a very interesting opportunity to test the esports phenomenon in a new setting and take it into a new environment.”
The esports Village will encompass 1,800 square meters of the festival site in Wacken. Metal heads will have the opportunity to go head to head in games like “Playerunknown’s Battlegrounds” and “League of Legends.” 
Concept and marketing support for the event is provided by The Sports People und Live Nation Brand Partnership & Media.
Wacken Open Air is the world’s largest heavy metal festival by its own admission. It regularly sells out all 75,000 available tickets, and currently has less than 1,000 available for this year’s edition, Aug. 2-4.