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Aussie game devs awarded AU$6m stimulus

Ten Australian game developers have been awarded between them an AU$6 million stimulus package to boost the local industry.

Ten Australian game developers have been awarded between them an AU$6 million stimulus package to boost the local industry.

(Credit: Defiant Development)

If ever there was a sign that mobile games are the future of the local gaming development industry, this is probably it. Screen Australia has awarded the first AU$6 million of its AU$20 million games stimulus fund (PDF) to 10 developers around the country.

The news follows hard on the heels of the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) releasing news that the local industry fell from 1431 employees in 2007 to 581 in 2012.

Nevertheless, it's interesting that the majority of the recipients have a strong presence in mobile gaming:

  • Defiant Development of Queensland, known for Heroes Call, Ski Safari and Rocket Bunnies

  • ODD Games of South Australia, which created Monster Truck Destruction

  • Soap Creative of NSW, which has a massive range of titles across multiple platforms, including web, handheld and mobile

  • Tantalus Media of Victoria, which has a range of both original and licensed IP across Nintendo, IOS, PC and PSP

  • Tin Man Games of Victoria, which has made a name for itself remaking choose-your-own-adventure books for a mobile platform

  • Twiitch of Victoria, which develops for Android, iOS and the web

  • Uppercut Games of the ACT, which made a stunning new engine for third-person mobile shooter Epoch

  • The Voxel Agents of Victoria, which is known for the Train Conductor games and its most recent offering, Puzzle Retreat

  • Wicked Witch Software of Victoria, which you might know from Catapult Kings, Alien vs. Predator, Bejeweled and sports-themed games.

The 10 studios will receive the funding over a three-year period.

"Given that game development is the fastest-growing sector of the worldwide audiovisual market from a consumer perspective, Australian developers should share in the AU$80 billion global market," said Screen Australia CEO Fiona Cameron in a statement. "Screen Australia's Game Enterprise program provides a diverse range of Australian companies with valuable funds to help develop original IP, employ more people, including promoting internships, and expand distribution and marketing opportunities."

Given the last few rocky years that the local industry has been experiencing, the stimulus is a fabulous and much-needed boost — especially for indie studios. CNET Australia would like to offer its sincere congratulations to all recipients.

You can read more about what the stimulus hopes to achieve on the Screen Australia website.