Global digitalization increases the preference for games. There is an industry that has an important economic impact and is becoming soft power currency for states. It’s almost impossible to talk about the video game industry without looking at the influence, the attractions and the power of seduction it fosters.
In the era of information, when credibility is the scarcest resource, the gaming industry becomes a provider of trust. The trust in technical and creative capabilities, the anchor in the now and the look to the future, as well as the bet on a nation’s initiative and originality, all together bundled in the gaming industry.
A case study, which can serve as an example for Romania, is Poland. In this country, the government has agreed to support the development of the gaming industry, with excellent results for both the industry and the State.
In Poland, the gaming industry has experienced fulminant growth due to:
- An education system centered on sciences
- Increasing developers’ ability to generate proprietary products (e.g. the Witcher series of games)
- Investing in one of the world’s most popular digital game distribution platforms – GOG.com
- Providing tax deductions to R&D investments in this industry
Due to these measures, Poland was a Prince Charming who grew up in a year as other in seven. That is, from $ 279.6 million in 2014 to $ 408 million in 2015, and to $ 1.26 billion in 2016. There are 331 gaming studios, of which 99% are SMEs. In this context, 95% of the income earned by these studios comes from the export of proprietary products. Between 2014 and 2018, a composite growth rate (CAGR) of 5.4% is estimated for the gaming industry, placing Poland on the 19th place in the world.
Annually, the Polish government, through the National Research and Development Center, allocates about € 27 million (116 million Polish zloty) to fund the most promising game developers. The Polish government’s interest in supporting the gaming industry has grown since the success of the Witcher series of games by the local company CD Projekt RED. The success of the Witcher and Cyberpunk 2077 series led to the company’s listing on the Warsaw Stock Exchange. Revenues reported in 2016 for CD Projekt RED led to an estimated company value of $ 2.3 billion.
For Poland, the gaming industry has become a remarkable sector of the economy. Titles launched by Polish studios enjoy artistic and commercial success. For the Poles, the gaming industry is a source of national pride and was declared one of the high-level intelligence specialties.
In Romania, the estimated market value has steadily increased from $ 114.7 million in 2014 to $ 137 million in 2015 and $ 145.3 million in 2016. At present, the gaming industry has 80 development studios, with most of the revenue being generated by local representative offices of major gaming companies in the world. The growth of the industry is supported by a large number of companies set up only in 2016, 25% of all gaming studios. The Romanian gaming industry has witnessed the development or co-development of large international titles and less of game titles developed by Romanian companies; 85% of Romanian studios are specialized in developing games and 15% of studios are focused on specialized services for the industry.
Video games are part of the creative industries. They help promote art and local potential. They communicate values, are a mean of cultural transmission and contribute to building the country brand. Poland has given CD Projekt RED, which launched Witcher and propelled the Polish gaming industry to the top of global developers. When will we have the Romanian version of the studio to release such a successful title?