INDIANAPOLIS — Butler University’s long-awaited Esports Park is set to open in the coming weeks, and they’re announcing a popular esports company is relocating to Indianapolis to become a tenant in the new facility.
Challonge will be relocating to the Circle City to become a permanent tenant in the university’s state-of-the-art facility. Once you take a look around the 7,000 square foot space, it’s no surprise why!
Inside you’ll find 50 gaming PCs, an area of gaming consoles, virtual reality and even a space for technology-infused corporate training events.
“Butler is on the bleeding edge of esports and adopting it right here on campus,” said Matt McIntyre, head of Challonge.
The space will welcome students, community members and businesses, like Challonge, with the hopes of inspiring the next generation of innovators and gamers.
“When you think of esports, you think traditionally of people in their basements gaming with the lights off, and no one’s around,” McIntyre said. “I think the opportunity here is to showcase that esports is truly a team sports.”
“Students can [game] in here alongside community members and check out time on consoles, PCs, high-end machines and get that gaming experience,” said Nathan Duke, manager of the Esports Program and Facility at Butler University. “We can also turn on a lot of varsity events and community activations as well.”
The facility will also have broadcast production capabilities for live events, like podcasts or esports competitions. It will also include a coworking space, cafe and office space available for lease to support local small businesses.
Butler offers an esports minor with a curriculum that spans both the communications school and the business school. The school also has a collegiate esports team, which competes in the Big East just like your typical varsity sport.
“It’s exactly like a basketball program or any other major athletics except our field is online,” Duke said. “We’re not playing on astroturf field, we’re in a virtual space competing for the same titles and bragging rights.”
The Butler Esports Park will open to students in the coming weeks, with a grand opening for the broader community this fall. They plan to unveil a monthly membership program for community members.