Photo/IllutrationAn eSports event involving participants competing in the fight game “Street Fighter” (Provided by Capcom Co.)

  • Photo/Illustraion

Leading game maker Capcom Co. is cashing in on the growing popularity of eSports by starting to charge admission for spectators willing to pay to see top competitors duking it out on-screen.

The company is trying to create a new revenue stream by increasing paid spectator events involving its “Street Fighter” video game.

“We will enhance product sales and opportunities to drink and eat at the event,” Haruhiro Tsujimoto, president of Capcom, said in a recent interview with The Asahi Shimbun. “We will make it into content that spectators are willing to pay to see."

The game maker holds an eSports tournament series called "Street Fighter League" in which three-member teams compete against one another. It is trying to promote eSports amid the surging popularity of video and online gaming.

The company sold out all tickets to a competition in March when it charged admission for a portion of the spectators' seats.

It will increase the number of paid seats at a competition to be held in December.

Capcom will also consider charging admission for tickets to the preliminary rounds, which are currently distributed online for free.