Games industry veterans Ian Livingstone and Rick Gibson have called for the formation of a new British Games Institute to champion the sector.
Backed by trade bodies UKIE and TIGA as well as a host of industry names, the BGI would have three main aims.
Funding, culture and education
The first is to fund the development of 40 cultural British games ever year by providing grants of £50k to £100k and loans between £100k to £500k.
Secondly, the BGI would promote the cultural and economic contribution of games to the UK “through a new national programme of events and research that celebrate British games culture”.
Thirdly, it would fund the development of games for use in the national curriculum, a move its proponents believe will help up-skill the games workforce.
Clarifying its position in the industry, the website proposing the formation of the BGI states it would not be a new trade body, but a non-membership charity much like the British Film Institute. Currently the BFI runs the certification process for video games tax relief.
“It builds on the long hard work of both trade bodies, taking some of its inspiration from their creative policy initiatives,” reads a statement.
“It should be funded with new money from the Government, the National Lottery and the reasonable commercial returns on games it funds. Its goal should be to help nurture, promote and advance the UK’s games industry in the long-term, creating sustainable studios.”
The initiative is already being supported by over 240 people in the UK games industry, including Team 17’s Debbie Bestwick, Rebellion’s Jason Kingsley, 22Cans’ Peter Molyneux, Midoki’s Ian Hetherington, Space Ape Games’ John Earner and many more.
Games Investment Fund
TIGA's Richard Wilson hopes that any British Games Institute would also manage its proposed Games Investment Fund.
The Fund, similar to BGI's aims stated above, would involve grants or loans being made available to games companies on a matched funding basis up to a maximum of £200,000.
You can find more information on the British Games Institute website.