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5G Gaming Rises at Slush 2018

One of the primary motivations we had for starting Hatch was to make high performance, full-featured premium gaming more approachable and accessible to more audiences. That’s why “we’re all players” is our motto, and that’s why we’ve started hosting casual eSports events like the one held last August at Tubecon Helsinki.

With Slush, the massive global tech gathering held annually in Helsinki, we wanted to do something special with our friends at Elisa, the Finnish telecommunications company that is leading the way in the implementation of 5G mobile networks in Finland and Estonia. Streaming games via Hatch is an ideal consumer use case for the next generation of mobile connectivity, which not only enables faster connections and more bandwidth, but greatly reduced latency as well.

How best to showcase this performance in front of 22,000 tech-heads, entrepreneurs, investors, analysts and press? Enter the 5G Gaming Challenge, a “triathlon” of three games over the two-day Slush event:

  • The forthcoming Arkanoid Rising, the first Hatch Original and the first game ever built from the ground up for streaming on Hatch. A bold reimagining of the arcade classic produced in association with TAITO, Slush attendees got to play a preview level as part of the tournament.
  • A sneak peek at another forthcoming title, Beach Buggy Racing 2, the highly anticipated, souped-up kart-racing sequel by the minds at Vector Unit.
  • Hatch’s unique multiplayer spin on the original Angry Birds – always a crowd favorite, and perhaps the only game that everyone instinctively knows how to play.

Over a real 5G network provided by Elisa, at any given time during Slush you could play two of these games at the Hatch booth, and another at the Elisa booth. Play sessions were no longer than a couple minutes each, allowing for visitors to quickly jump into multiplayer matches and then be on their way again to the next meeting, talk or panel discussion. Players were ranked in each game – with the four highest ranking players across all three games invited to the big final.

The final four face off in Beach Buggy Racing 2, the forthcoming sequel from the cross-platform racing maestros at Vector Unit

That was held on stage at the close of Press Play, Slush’s official gaming side event. The decisive match? One last race to the finish line in Beach Buggy Racing 2. While the game instance itself was happening in our data center in Stockholm, our four finalists onstage in Helsinki each piloted their driver while the audience followed the action on the spectator view on the big screen. Five different camera views, four players, one game instance. A true showcase, in other words, of how cloud gaming over ultrafast 5G networks can bring people together.

So who won? Congratulations are in order to Joonas Suokko from Vaasa, AKA user Saukko, who will go down in history as the world’s first 5G Gaming Champion. As he was told after his performance – sä oot legenda. You’re a legend