GDC comment: Is the media world finally waking up to the Insomnia way of doing things?

Multiplay Events talks about its Insomnia events and ‘gaming going mainstream.

Entertainment, consumption of entertainment, and where we source our entertainment has undergone such a seismic shift in the past decade, traditional media was so sidestepped by it, many found themselves dumbfounded by what had just happened to them. It almost churlish to say, but it seemed only gamers and the gaming community had the vision to see where media was headed.

For everyone involved in the gaming community, and for those of us at Insomnia especially, it feels as if consumption of entertainment is finally reaching a sort of singularity, where everything we’ve achieved in the past 62 festivals is finally merging with what Gen Z and Millennials expect from entertainment.

Insomnia was running esports tournaments before the word even existed, and while it may be easy for the uninformed to sneer, the fact attendance figures are growing year on year across our sector (and Insomnia especially) is proof enough.

For Insomnia62 alone we have 11 tournaments, across 6 genres this, our biggest show yet, all of it driven by demand from our fans, and the communities that build up around the games that we showcase. The truly magical thing we’re seeing in the industry though, is the increased diversity of attendees to Insomnia.

We must always be mindful that games and gaming drives our industry but with increased family attendance to Insomnia, the footfall speaks for itself. I want to whisper it, because it’s become such a horrendous cliché, but…. ‘gaming gone mainstream’.

It’s something of an irony then that how we must communicate news about Insomnia is anything but mainstream (in the traditional sense at least). It’s vital for all of us in this sector to remember that we’re not just using technology to entertain, but we have to utilise it to communicate to our fan base as well.

All of our lives are utterly intertwined with tech, whether it’s tapping a phone to pay for a bus, or multi-million dollar esports events that command audience figures TV networks would kill for.

We’ve always been aware of this, which is why we continue to nurture and invest in YouTubers and social media to spread the word on Insomnia. This year we have our biggest YouTuber turnout in Insomnia’s history, led by the brilliant Caspar Lee. The response to his announcement on social media was incredible; it acts as a real validation to what we’re doing and the direction we’re taking with our festival, and whilst parents might not fully appreciate it, it is the new wave of gamers that truly embrace it.

What amused us most was a small minority of people arguing Caspar is too mainstream for Insomnia, but they miss the point –Insomnia is the new mainstream.

If you would like to engage with this mainstream audience in 2018 or beyond then make sure you drop a line to our senior sales manager: He’ll be at GDC, so arrange a meeting.

About MCV Staff

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