Scotland has plans to become a major player in the United Kingdom’s gaming industry, and so far, their quest for domination is going well. A study has shown an incredible 27% increase in the amount of people employed in Scotland in the gaming industry in 2017, and this is on top of a hike of 25% the year before.
The Independent Game Developers’ Association, or TIGA, has revealed that 1540 people had full-time work in game development as of November last year, across 91 companies. That is up from 1290 staff members at 85 companies in 2016. There are also as many as 2814 Scots in jobs that support the game development sector indirectly, and this figure has also increased, from 2408 in 2016.
Richard Wilson Weighs In
Richard Wilson, the chief executive for TIGA, stated that Scottish developers would be buoyed up by this news, especially in consideration that the UK economy has grown by 1% or 2%, and the Scottish industry has jumped by more than 25%. He added that he is hesitant to put a figure on what next year will bring, but that he was confident that the industry would continue this growth.
The Gap is Closing
Currently, Scotland stands as the third biggest gaming hotspot in the UK, behind London and the South East, but the gap is narrowing very quickly. Their success story has been as a result of the efforts of giants in the industry, like Rockstar North, as well as smaller, independent developers.
Korina Abbott, a marketing consultant for the gaming industry stated that the Scottish boom came as no surprise to her. She explained that the first-rate university courses and massive influence of Rockstar North made Scotland the ideal breeding ground for developments of all sizes. She added that the industry had also enjoyed a large amount of investment over the past year, and this had allowed studios like Blazing Griffin to grow much faster than would otherwise have been the case.
The Scots Already Have a Good Reputation
Jason Kingsley, boss of Rebellion Games and chairman for TIGA, believes that Scotland already has a reputation as a creative hub in terms of games. He stated that, alongside the country’s natural beauty and the strength of its people, nowadays it is also becoming known for its technological developments and the talent for game creation it boasts.
Companies Big and Small are Benefitting
One of Scotland’s brightest independent stars and developer for Ant Workshop, Tony Gowland, is very pleased by the industry growth, and particularly glad because it is not just the bigger players who are benefitting from it. He stated that a variety of companies were involved in creating everything from big budget console titles and casino games, right on through to mobile games.
Wilson is Grateful for the Support
Richard Wilson specifically mentioned the role that the Scottish government and various political parties had played; speaking of the massive support the Scottish gaming industry has received from both. He then spoke of the big skill base that was available, thanks to the excellent universities Scotland boasts, and the first-rate graduates that were being created.
Whichever way we look at it, Scotland’s future is bright and is set to make an impact on the world of gaming in the most positive way.