Gameway, a video game lounge that just opened two locations inside DFW International Airport, wants to fix that problem. The idea and execution are both pretty simple: Gameway is a collection of gaming stations in which you can sit down in a comfy chair, put on headphones and play Xbox games on a 43-inch 4K TV. The lounges are located at terminals B42 and E16.
The company’s president, Jordan Walbridge, is all too familiar with how boring airports can be. His wife and co-founder, Emma, is from England, so the couple has spent a lot of time in airports traveling between countries. Jordan credits Emma with having the idea for Gameway in the first place. She has a background in managing hotels, but she knew it would be tough to fill a traditional video game lounge on weekdays — “unless you did it somewhere that’s busy all the time,” she said. “Like the airport.”
The concept behind Gameway is that for a small fee, you can immerse yourself in a game the same way you would at home. Every station at Gameway hasup to 20 new and popular Xbox games pre-installed — provided they’re not too violent. Currently, that includes major multiplayer hits like Call of Duty: WWII, Madden, Overwatch, Fortnite and Rocket League, as well as games you can enjoy alone, such as family-friendly mainstay Minecraft and the engrossing adventure game Rise of the Tomb Raider.
Don’t worry, the stations don’t seem to share that crummy internet connection you always get stuck with at airports. I sat played through (and won, natch) a 6-player match of Rocket League with no noticeable lag or connection issues. You can easily log in with your own Xbox Gamertag to keep track of your own game progress and stats, if you choose.
Gameway has Xbox systems, specifically, and the reason wasn’t business-related as much as it was a personal choice from the president and founder.”I was in the army for eight years, and I was deployed to Afghanistan,” Walbridge says. “When we’d get back from a really hard mission, we would come back to our base, and we had all these original Xboxes linked up together. So we had these little tiny TVs, and four people can play Halo per TV, so we had 16 guys playing Halo. So that’s how we unwound and de-stressed from some really difficult days. Since then, Xbox has held a really special place in my heart.”