It used to be something that only those weirdos in the chess club did with a map and a handful of funny looking dice. Today, the Gamer now holds a hallowed place in the realm of popular culture, right next to the Movie Trivia Expert and the Cosplayer. The following cities are great for all kinds of geek culture since video games often host characters from movies, books, and television, including characters from real life and urban legends. Each city was chosen based on it's connections to gaming culture, which means the quality of the internet and how accessible it is, plenty of e-Sports events and tournaments, and a wide variety of places to shop when you need gear.
10 Tokyo, Japan
There's a friendly gaming culture throughout Tokyo, but this ambiance is especially concentrated in Akihabara Electric Town. This is where the gaming and anime culture of the city is concentrated, with plenty of shopping, cosplay and themed places to hang out based on video games. The neighborhood is mostly made up of internet cafes set up with the latest hardware and software, even more than the rest of town. Tokyo ranks 9th in the world for overall internet speed. Put it all together and you have a great place not only to game but to relax and feel welcome.
9 Seoul, South Korea
Where e-Sports were born and MMOs thrive, South Korea corners the market when it comes to competitive gaming, affordable hardware, public internet access, and internet speeds. Seongnam, a suburb of Seoul centered on the electronics industry, is where most of the magic takes place. South Korea's gaming standards are set by the Korea e-Sports Association (KeSPA), which is also a part of the Korean Olympic Committee and the International e-Sports Federation. Fiber optic connections and the most cutting-edge tech available ensure that South Korea has both the best internet access and speeds on Earth. Relax in one of many upscale PC rooms for hours on end with your favorite game when you're not watching a tournament at the nearby stadium.
8 Seattle, United States
If you have to choose one city in the United States to visit on your gaming tour list, make it Seattle. Overall, this is where internet access is the most accessible and affordable in the country. The city also hosts a wide variety of gaming events and conventions, like the Retro Gaming Expo and GeekGirlCon, along with several high-level eSports gatherings. This is also a great city for developers, engineers, coders, artists and others with career plans that involve gaming, with big names like Nintendo America, Microsoft and Valve using Seattle as a home base.
7 Stockholm, Sweden
Dreamhack, a festival that celebrates all things gaming, takes place in several cities but the gathering in Stockholm is the most famous. It's set the record for largest LAN party in the 1990s and still hosts the biggest LAN event and computer festival in the world. This city has a fiercely dedicated eSports and gaming community that makes it all happen. It also helps that the country is equipped with modern tech and internet access, giving Stockholm the 4th best in the world.
6 Sacramento, United States
It's hard to choose just one or two cities in California, the state where home computing originated and gaming flourished, but we have to give it to Sacramento. Not only does the city have a great gaming environment with some of the best internet speeds in the country, but it's also the home of the Computer History Museum. What started out as a demo in a retail store has grown to an impressive collection that goes back to 1975. A nice excuse for a gamer to stop gaming for a while and get to know computers better.
5 Cologne, Germany
A relatively small city near the Fench and Dutch border, you might be surprised to see this entry on the list. Perhaps it's due to the location in central western Europe, which draws history enthusiasts and sports fans as well as gaming fanatics. The internet speeds here are stellar and readily available, and we're not sure if they came before the eSports craze hit Cologne or after. Nearby Frankfurt also has some notoriety in this category but Cologne has been hosting eSports tournaments and gaming conferences on a big scale since the early 2000s and is currently home to ESL One, Gamescom, and the Intel Extreme Masters Tournament.
4 Zurich, Switzerland
Switzerland is a centrally-located country known more for communication than conflict. It's no wonder gamers would feel at home in its industrial heart, Zurich. The upscale tech also helps, although the prices here tend to be a bit steep the download and upload speeds make it worthwhile. It's also a great city for conferences and expos that lean towards new computing and gaming technology. In 2018, the city hosted the Ludicious Zürich Game Festival, which introduced gamers, developers, and students to new products, which includes a lot of game testing. The Zürich Game Show takes place every year in September and includes new games, eSports, and cosplay.
3 Los Angeles, California
One of the biggest, busiest and most impressive cities for any kind of media anywhere on the planet, this is the city to see if you're a gamer that likes to party. EA and Playstation both call LA home, and the roster of convention and festivals that take place here is nothing short of glorious. The Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) and Blizzcon are just two famous examples. On top of that, no matter when you visit, there's always fast internet at good prices with plenty of internet cafes where you can connect.
2 Oslo, Norway
Right after Sweden for the fastest internet in Europe, it's all about access in Oslo, Norway. Speeds are fast and the tech is cutting edge, and you don't even need to bring your own computer. You can find one in one of many internet cafes or bars, and it's likely your hotel or hostel will also have a computer for public use. Oslo is a secret haven for gamers that has yet to be discovered, with cities in Sweden and Germany hosting the big tournaments. The multi-level Tilt Oslo entertainment center downtown is already turning into a popular place to worship all things gaming. Get some gaming done in Oslo before the crowds find out about it.
1 London, England
Ever been to a Meltdown? If you're a gamer, you have to visit London and check these popular bars out. They aren't the first eSports bars in the world, but the craze has caught on in England and London is the center of the action. Meltdown isn't alone, either. There are several other venues taking on the trend, and the result has been an exciting mix of gaming and British pub culture. The Red Bull Gaming Sphere, an expansive eSports and gaming studio that includes consoles, VR headsets and racing simulators, recently opened to rave game reviews.