Opening Fukui’s First Esports School

Opening Fukui’s First Esports School

ESPO LAB, Instruction From Pro Gamers

From February 1st, an Esports school “ESPO LAB FUKUI” (located in Fukui Prefecture, Fukui City, Takayanagi 2-Chome) will open for business, with aims to find talented gamers and operate as a training centre. In addition to having 12 high-end PCs available for use at an hourly rate, training curriculums instructed by specialized Esports pro gamers will also be offered, to nurture the skills of other pro gamers. The Esports school will be the first of its kind within the prefecture.

With an emphasis on strong focus and quick reflexes, Esports is treated like any other legitimate sport in many countries across the globe. In addition to being an official event during the 2022 Asian games, an Esports championship pitting Japan’s prefectures against each other was held as a cultural program during last autumn’s National Sports Festival of Japan in Ibaraki; the event gathered much attention.

A construction company and the parent company of ESPO LAB, Chikara Gumi (located in Fukui City, Takayanagi 2-Chome; company president, Riki Maeda), has its focus on how Esports can improve communication skills through online connections. The company decided to open the Esports school with the concept of nurturing people’s talents as essential in invigorating the local area, as well as luring in more events into Fukui in the future, including Esports competitions.

ESPO LAB is located on the 7th floor of RAINBOW BUILDING (レインボービル), and will have the latest high-end gaming PCs to connect globally. The company has also hired three pro gamers to work as instructors; other pro gamers will also be available as instructors through online connections.

“It would be great if we can find talented people in Fukui to join our pro Esports team,” said ESPO LAB instructor and Fukui Esports Union Vice President, Takahiro Nosho; he also used to be part of the pro Esports team “HANAGUMI”.

“There are cases where children lacking in communication skills are able to develop and converse with other through online gaming. We hope to offer such a place where children can flourish,” explained company president Maeda.

Courses will be held between 5:00 p.m. and 9:00 p.m. on weekdays, and between 10:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. on holidays. Instruction fees has not yet been determined. PCs will also be available for use at an hourly rate; the rates are planned to be ¥400/hour on weekdays, and ¥500/hour on weekends and holidays.

Business hours will be from 10:00 a.m. to midnight (on opening day, hours will end between 9:00 and 10:00 p.m.). It will be closed on Mondays.

Inquiries to ESPO LAB can be made by phone: 0776 (97) 6901.

“Esports” is an abbreviation of “electronic sports”. Competing through PC, console, and mobile games, it has been recognized as an official sport by many. The soccer game “Pro Evolution Soccer” and the fighting game “Street Fighter” are popular in Japan. In Europe, America, China, and South Korea, competitions involving large sums of prize money are held, and many spectators watch the matches on large monitors while listening to live commentators.


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