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Gaming

“I strongly believe that the nexus of art and technology is how Britain will pay her way in the 21st Century. Video games are right at the heart of this nexus. They were born digital and exhibit some of the best creativity Britain has to offer.”

 

Matt Hancock, Former Minister for Culture and Digital

The UK has a long history of making world-class video games, with over 2,000 companies across the full spectrum of games technologies – from console, mobile and PC, to fast-developing sectors such as VR/AR and Artificial Intelligence.

 

The UK Government provides support to companies in the sector. For example, the UK Games Fund has spent £5m helping 70 studios since 2014 and the Video Games Tax Relief has supported approximately 480 productions.

With the global market expected to grow to $118.6 billion by 2019, the opportunities for the UK Games industry have never been greater.

Located close to the Guildford cluster of gaming businesses, the Thames Valley is home to truly global computer game companies who have produced some of the most popular content.

A German global independent developer, marketer and publisher of interactive entertainment software, the company specialises in strategy and simulation games, including ‘Sins of a Solar Empire’ and the ‘Tropico’ series.

Also situated in Windsor is one of the most well-known video game companies in the world, with Pokemon and Super Mario Brothers being their most famous products. Nintendo chose the town as a base for its UK workings, including product management, marketing and operations.

One of Europe’s largest independent game developers, it has had 24 number one hit games, including Alien vs Predator and Sniper Elite. The company now employs 200+ people, the majority of them at its studio base in the Thames Valley. Rebellion collaborates with the University of Oxford, who are right on their doorstep, in particular when hiring graduates and enabling training to include relevant programming skills.

The Japanese giant has its European headquarters in Windsor, within walking distance of the Castle. It set up this office with help from the Department of International Trade and the Thames Valley Chamber of Commerce.

Famous for their Lego Star Wars titles and holding the worldwide rights to develop Lego video games, the company was acquired by Warner Bros in 2007. The Group includes the games development studio TT Fusion and TV production company TT Animation.

naturalmotion

Bought by San Francisco-based Zyenga for $527m in 2014, over half of its 300+ workforce is located in the Thames Valley. As well as its own impressive portfolio of games, NaturalMotion has provided software for games such as Grand Theft Auto IV and Bioshock Infinite.

A national centre of excellence for the games, visual effects and animation industries, they work with leading employers to develop qualifications, training and courses. This ranges from taster sessions in schools right through to career development training for industry professionals.