Project year : 2017
Location : Jongno, Seoul
Client : Riot Games Korea
Program :Cultural facility
Project area : 2,488 sqm
Work scope : Interior design
LoL PARK was planned as multi-complex venue that features an e-sport stadium seating 400 spectators and is exclusively used for seasonal LCK (League of Legends Champions Korea) match. In front of the stadium lies the FOH (Front of House) which serves as a welcoming space comprised of foyer, café, exhibition, meet-and-greet zone, and merch shop. Whereas the BOH (Back of House) accommodates all backstage facilities related to broadcasting, office staff, and player amenities.
One of the main challenges in the layout of FOH was handling multiple entrances and pathways. It was important that visitors are guided to the stadium without confusion, but at the same time, intrigued to this journey by exploring this spatial structure themselves.
First, a pathway parallel to existing corridor was added between elevator shafts. These elevators only serve higher floors so the space was formerly enclosed to be used as storage. Then a separate zone was created by adding new masses next to shuttle elevator which was extruded to the original lobby. This zone provides access to the entrance hall, stadium foyer, café, and to restroom. While movement is highlighted along the short axes, the perpendicular long axis attracts visitors with exhibition contents. In a way, this space resemble the ‘Jungle’, the in-game map in LoL, acting as shortcut to connect its surrounding programs.
The atmosphere of FOH and Stadium is intended to inspire solemnity, rather than displaying theme park design elements, as LoL PARK aims to settle itself as a new mecca for E-sport. Somber background was desired to arouse the sense of strain, rivalry, and even antiquity. Shimmering under dim lights, aluminum foam panels incrust the core area. Wax-coated hot rolled plate, steel grating, and unrefined texture of concrete all add up to give vitality to the space. Stadium’s exterior is covered with bespoke black concrete panels on which in-game visual motif were engraved. Unto these humble-yet-dignified textures, the illumination from the digital screen and projection mapping is combined to bring scenic vibe and imaginary views.
Among various types of theater layout, ‘arena’ was selected to break from the conventional end stage type which has been widely preferred for the broadcast purpose. The first intention was to accentuate the rivalry mood and encourage supporting fan culture. Stage and grandstand are placed in close proximity so on-site watching experience was made more exciting. Unlike other sport games where the players’ physical movements are observable firsthand, e-sport match is unavoidably delivered through screens. By decreasing the distance to the stage, spectators may observe the players’ skillful hand movement, the very subtle look on their faces, and actually engage in the team mood in whole. The rounded seating plan offers the spectators to interact with one another. Fan culture of Esports- often mistaken to be bounded in cyber space – is now made public in LoL Park.
Out of the limited double height area given, largest possible circle was drawn for the boundary of stadium, and the remainder was used as foyer and entrance. This foyer area with high ceiling creates dramatic contrast with the FOH which has lower ceiling, attracting visitors to the arena.