OPINION: We Need to Develop Talent So Video Game Industry Can Grow

Article excerpt

AS THE new government grapples with the difficult economic conditions facing the UK, they have recognised the special ability of our creative industries to create wealth via the spearheading of new business models and their wider energising impact on the economy. In this context, the new coalition has made it clear that they see the games industry as being of particular interest.

Like them or loathe them, 70% of the UK population now enjoys playing games. Revenues from software sales today are approximately $45bn worldwide. Some say it is now the largest entertainment industry in the world. In addition, the UK is also very good at producing great games. So it is no surprise that the new government is looking at how it can foster and expand this industry.

One of the main levers to do this is not with software or hardware. It is with brains. In short, we need to develop the right sort of new talent with the right skills to move this important sector of the economy forward.

Naturally the North West wants a slice of this action, with forward looking companies like Sony Computer Entertainment seeding and supporting higher education degree courses, and the MediaCity development at Salford Quays set to become a base for a games usability centre where students get a chance to prototype new games ideas. …