Computer and video games are one of the most innovative forms of cultural expression and are a recognised cultural asset. Today, game technologies and mechanisms are also used in areas unconnected with the cultural and entertainment sector – from the automotive industry to healthcare. Compared with countries like Canada, the UK and France, which have developed comprehensive, sustainable and successful game funding systems, until now, Germany has not been competitive as a location for game development because it does not have any equivalent structures at national level. Recently, the revenue share of German games development in Germany fell to below 5 per cent. Germany risks missing out on the development of this medium of the future.
Action and Implementation
The parties of the federal government (CDU, CSU and SPD) have therefore decided in their coalition agreement to introduce a games fund to promote the development of computer and video games in Germany in order to achieve international competitiveness. Since 2019, 50 million euros have been budgeted for this project. Responsible for the implementation is the Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure (BMVI). By means of a first early measure, applications for a de minimis grant of up to € 200,000 per company in three years could be submitted in summer 2019. A substantial, predictable support programme is expected following a necessary EU notification in winter. This programme should systematically and specifically promote game developments in Germany and reduce the current competitive disadvantages compared to locations such as Great Britain, France and Canada.
The Federal Government’s support for computer games is intended to systematically and specifically fund game developments in Germany and to reduce the current competitive disadvantages compared with locations such as Great Britain, France and Canada. It forms the basis for making Germany an internationally strong and innovative location for game development.