“Gaming houses” are the most common way esports teams and organization houses their players. A team will buy a house and have all their players and coaching staff live in the house. This makes it easier for teams to live and breathe the game they play. But they’re going away, and for good reason. Team Solo Mid, one of North America’s biggest esports organizations recently announced plans for an LA based headquarters and training facility. It seems pretty similar to the facility that Team Liquid created a while back (and that I already wrote about).
Could you live with the people you worked with? Now what if your job required you to work 10 hours a day? What if your work was so time consuming that your co workers were also your main sources of social interaction? It’s not easy and could be a big reason why esports careers are often short lived. The esports pro’s lifestyle is simply unsustainable. This is a big reason why major esports organizations all around the world are investing in training facilities. It’s common sense to separate your work from your home.
But let’s not forget what gaming houses did for us. These esports teams were so passionate, they would spend hundreds of thousands of dollars to make sure that their teams would have everything they needed to be able to practice with their teammates at all hours of the day. Players would sometimes move to a country they’ve never been before and commit themselves to living and working with people 24/7 for years at a time. Gaming houses represented a lifestyle of extreme passion and work ethic. I still remember the “MTV Cribs” style house tour videos that teams would put out. And to be honest, it seemed fun. A lot of kids would love to spend all day playing video games and living with their friends. Without esports teams and players willingness to move to LA and buy houses to live and practice together, esports may not be where it is today.
But esports players aren’t kids anymore. Their coaches, team owners, and investors aren’t just old teammates anymore. As much as gaming houses brought us, they also represent an unsustainable lifestyle. Pro’s need the option to wake up in their own bed, kiss their cats goodbye, and commute to work like the rest of us. Normalcy for the pros will allow them to last through a longer career. I’m sure it would also help the esports economy if teams didn’t need to buy houses to fit 7-10 people in LA.