Thousands of gamers waited in the cold to enter the 2018 version of DreamHack Atlanta located in Building A of the Georgia World Congress Center (GWCC) on Friday morning, but inside the action was heating up as guests got acclimated to their surroundings for the three-day gaming lifestyle festival.
This international festival based out of Sweden started in 1994 and branched out to North America in 2016, making its GWCC debut in 2017.
“It is a fantastic facility. For us, it is about having the capacity to grow and they have an extremely friendly staff and had an open mind to an event like this,” said DreamHack CEO, Marcus Lindmark, regarding the convention center.
DreamHack offers a plethora of competitive tournaments and international esports competitions where almost $2 million will be up for grabs, but the draw for the majority of attendees is the massive Bring Your Own Computer (BYOC) Party.
“It is cool to be in the same room for three days with other people who you might have played with before but have never been able to meet them,” said Justin Henderson from Knoxville, Tenn. “It also allows you to show off your rig and get ideas from other people who experiment with different setups.”
The festival has 13 other shows across the world including North American locations in Austin and Montreal, and features panels, meet-and-greets, cosplay competitions, and live music.
This year’s event coincides with the first-ever Atlanta Esports Week which provides business executives with an experiential tour and programming about the emerging world of esports. The global esports audience will reach 380 million this year, made up of 165 million esports enthusiasts and 215 million occasional viewers and on its current trajectory will be an industry worth $1.4 billion by 2020. Atlanta has been named in the 2018 Top 3 Best Cities for Gamers in the U.S. by WalletHub.
DreamHack 2018 is open 24 hours and day passes for today and Sunday are also available for purchase for $30. Tickets and other information can be found at https://www.tixr.com/groups/dreamhack/events/dreamhack-atlanta-2018-8474