Want to game like a pro on an amateur’s budget? IKEA has you covered. The Swedish retailer just released its first line of gaming-specific furniture, created in collaboration with Republic of Gamers (ROG), the gaming hardware arm of electronics manufacturer ASUS. The range aims to blend gamer gear into home decor, which will be especially effective if your space is already decked out in all-IKEA-everything.
The collection of more than 30 products is aimed squarely at 2.5 billion gamers around the world, who IKEA calls “an overlooked group from a life-at-home perspective.” Prices haven’t been released just yet, but they’re bound to be in the usual IKEA range of affordability, i.e. at least somewhat cheaper than high-end options. ROG helped the retailer come up with a series of chairs, desks, drawer units, peg boards, and accessories to make the average gamer’s life more comfortable and convenient.
Those accessories include things like a mug holder, mouse bungee, neck pillow, ring light for YouTubers and Twitch streamers, multifunctional cushion/blanket with what looks like a hand warmer pocket, and a hand-shaped desktop organizer for your headphones and cables. Not all of these items are self-explanatory, even to gamers (Gamespot also wonders why that pillow pocket is necessary), but maybe if you’re in this demographic, you get it.
“ROG has in-depth knowledge of the gaming industry and wants to find new ways to make gaming blend into the home,” IKEA stated in a recent press release. “Combining the best of these two worlds, the collaboration aimed to democratize the gaming experience by creating relevant, functional, beautiful, and affordable products and complete gaming solutions to make it easier for everyone to create the setup and the home they want.”
“The new gaming range will target PC gamers and include six product families: HUVUDSPELARE, UTESPELARE, MATCHSPEL, GRUPPSPEL, UPPSPEL, and LÅNESPELARE. All UPPSPEL products have been designed by IKEA and ROG in close collaboration. The remaining product families have been developed by IKEA based on the insights and knowledge gained from the collaboration to ensure the width of the total gaming offer and to meet the various needs of IKEA customers in terms of function, design, and price.”
UPPSPEL is the highest-tech range in the collection, and includes items like a height-adjustable desk with an electric motor and an integrated USB charging dock. The UTESPELARE range includes a manually adjustable desk with a metal mesh insert to keep your PC from overheating and a matching chair in black or gray faux leather, and the lowest-priced HUVUDSPELARE series keeps things simple but functional. One limitation of the collection is that it focuses heavily on PC gaming, so if you’re a console gamer, these products still might not be quite right for you.
”The needs of billions of gamers around the globe are very diverse, whereas the existing offer is rather technical and often perceived as masculine design-wise, despite around 46 percent of gamers being female. We believe there’s a lot to be done to democratize the gaming experience,” says Ewa Rychert, Global Business Leader of Workspace, IKEA of Sweden. ”Now we take the first step on our gaming journey, and we do it by presenting affordable, high-performing gaming products and complete solutions that we hope reflect people’s personality and taste.”
If you were hoping to run out to your local IKEA to stock up for what might be another year of stay-at-home pandemic precautions, don’t get too excited. It’s going to be a minute before these items arrive in most countries. Launched at IKEA China in January 2021, the gaming collection will be available at IKEA Japan in May and the rest of the world starting in October.