DreamHack comes into focus

Jacob Bolvig
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It's not often you hear from Jacob, the shadowy founder of TLDR, but he has agreed to share his PrOfesSioNaL opinion on the DreamHack re-brand. Trigger-warning: It's very boring.

DreamHack, one of the most iconic brands in esports, just revealed a fresh coat of paint and a breath of fresh air to their 25-year young brand. How old does that make you feel?

I think I speak for most of us when I say that DreamHack, and their dedication to LAN-parties, holds a special place in our heart. There's nothing quite like sleeping on the floor between two noisy air flow fans.

No matter what part of the gaming scene you're into, you'll be able to find likeminded people in one of the corners of DreamHack's many halls at the event – it's also the only gaming event that's ever had success with EDM. And lasers, lots of lasers..

That kind of authenticity and rich history makes this re-brand a dream job for any creative. And conversely also an incredibly high-stakes, terror-inducing one because you don't want to get it wrong. Remember EG?

Luckily, Dreamhack hardly had a distinct brand to begin with. Sorry. I mean, those of us who know, know. But anyone else wouldn't be able to pinpoint how the event looks nor what it really represents as "the world's largest LAN-party".

But that all changes now.

Positioning themselves as "the place where the gaming community comes to life" they encapsulate what the festival has always been about and create an aspiration for the future. In contrast, ESL claims to be a place where "everybody can be somebody" putting a sharp focus on esports - and a clear distinction between the two TOs.

On the visual side the orange remains, but the DreamHack logo has been trimmed down to the wordmark and given a "hacker font" treatment, bringing you back to when games launched from a terminal. Or ASCII art in readme files of those things you shouldn't be downloading.

The TL;DR verdict

This feels like an evolution, which is both good and bad. On the plus side, we love that DH finally has a clear identity and tight visual look.

On the downside, some of it feels a little too safe and doesn't really express the rich experience that is DreamHack – we're particularly looking at their poster designs, that we assume are meant to bring visitors and spectators to their events in countries where DreamHack might be less known. A part of us also wish they introduced a brand icon, it would make for way better merch.

In total we'll give it 5/7 or 94 in 8, like DonHaci would say. Not quite there. But at least now they have a solid foundation to build off of.

December 14, 2020

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