The UK government’s man at the money-controls, Chancellor George Osbourne, has announced a tax credit for game development. He said: “The film tax credit, protected in our spending review, helped generate over £1 billion of film production investment in the UK last year alone. Today I am announcing our intention to introduce similar schemes for the video games, animation and high-end TV production industries. Not only will this help stop premium British TV programmes like Birdsong being made abroad, it will also attract top international investors like Disney and HBO to make more of their premium shows in the UK. It will support our brilliant video games and animation industries too.”
The details, of course, will be all important. If this is a tax break for mainstream game development then I fear it will mean little, due to there being just a handful of a big studios left in the UK and existing heavy investment in other countries. If, however, it extends to smaller enterprises, then it could make a real difference. I’ll update when we know a bit more.