The London Games Festival could return this year with the help from Boris Johnson.
The London Mayor’s Office has splashed 50,000 on a research project to establish the state of games in the city and how potential investment from Boris’ team might stimulate growth.
The Mayor’s office claims that London has fallen from third to fifth in the global standings of top video game development cities.
The report, entitled Growing the Games Sector in London, could lead to Mayoral sponsorship of a new London Games Festival and the setting up of an ‘international promotion strategy’ for the city.
It follows the implementation of tax breaks for the UK games development sector, which Johnson hopes will help make London a powerhouse for game creation, much like it has become in movies.
The UK has the largest consumer market in Europe [for games], while London’s studios contributed 224m to UK GDP last year, and 96.6m was spent on London-based games development,” read the report’s statement.
Nevertheless, London has slipped from third to fifth place in global games production, and last year’s London Games Festival was cancelled.
The Mayor could extend his creative industries portfolio to include games – an intervention that could address market failures in the sector and help the capital’s games businesses promote themselves to international markets.
In order to establish that this is an appropriate use of GLA funding, the Mayor needs to be confident that his investment will secure a solid return for London, and that the proposal is the right one, backed by the capital’s games businesses.”