Germany’s developer landscape
Hamburg and Berlin in detail
Hamburg is home to some of the biggest video games companies in Germany, such as InnoGames, Goodgame Studios and Bigpoint. All three specialise in free-to-play and browser, and/or mobile video games. But international companies have their offices here too, such as Capcom, Square Enix and Warner Bros. Entertainment, which shows that Hamburg has become one of the most important locations for the industry in Germany. This is also underscored by the respective educational offerings available at various colleges in and around the city. On top of that, there are a large number of indie studios, such as Mooneye Studios, OneManOnMars, Osmotic Studios, ROCKFISH Games, as well as traditional video games companies such as Daedalic Entertainment and Deep Silver FISHLABS.
Berlin has also gained in importance over the last few years and has become the location of choice for big players such as GameDuell, Wooga or Yager Development. Furthermore, Berlin has a vibrant and prosperous indie scene with a large number of studios such as Maschinen-Mensch, Megagon Industries, Stratosphere Games, Tiny Crocodile Studios and Toukana Interactive. Moreover, there are several colleges and international companies, such as Epic Games, GAMEVIL COM2US Europe, King, Tencent Games and Wargaming Mobile, who have set up offices in the German capital. In addition, Ubisoft Berlin, which is part of the Ubisoft Blue Byte studio network, opened in the centre of Berlin at the beginning of 2018. International events and conferences are also held in Berlin on a regular basis. Examples include A MAZE., an international festival that focuses on arthouse games and playful media, and gamesweekberlin, which brings together a variety of events, including the video game development and business conference QUO VADIS and WOMENIZE! Games & Tech, which shines a spotlight on the diverse talents within the video games industry.
More important locations in Germany
Other important companies and events are distributed across the remaining conurbations: Greater Cologne, for example, hosts Europe’s leading trade show for video games – gamescom – every year in August and is also home to companies such as Electronic Arts, ESL Gaming and Ubisoft (Düsseldorf). Bethesda and its in-house studio id Software have set up offices close to Frankfurt am Main, and this is also where Chris Roberts is working on Star Citizen with Cloud Imperium Games (formerly known as Foundry 42). In addition, Crytek, one of the most popular German video games companies, has its headquarters in the financial metropolis. Development studios, such as Deck13 Interactive and Keen Games, are also located here. Furthermore, BANDAI NAMCO Entertainment, Nintendo of Europe and Tencent Cloud are also headquartered in Frankfurt am Main. And only a few kilometres away from Frankfurt in Neu-Isenburg, you can also find the German headquarters of Sony Interactive Entertainment.
Munich, on the other hand, is home to big international players such as Activision Blizzard, Koch Media and Take-Two Interactive (Rockstar Games/2K). In addition, Munich also hosts Travian Games, another free-to-play heavyweight from Germany, and a number of smaller studios such as the young but highly successful team from Mimimi Games and remote control productions, whose studio Chimera Entertainment has worked on Angry Birds Epic for Rovio, among other things.
Successful video game companies can also be found outside the metropolitan centres, for example in Worms or Giebelstadt. Mobile video games pioneers HandyGames, for example, have their offices in Giebelstadt near Würzburg. The publisher Kalypso Media, known for brands such as Tropico, Commandos and Railway Empire, has its headquarters in Worms as well as subsidiaries in Japan, the UK and the US. The free-to-play experts Gameforge, which is also the biggest independent German developer, is located in Karlsruhe.
Most cities mentioned here also provide various networks for developers which promote networking opportunities, allow information and ideas to be exchanged among different parties, provide expert input where needed, etc. Many funding organisations also have their offices and partners there. All companies and their locations are listed in the company register.
- gamesmap is a visual representation of the online directory of the German video games industry. It has been devised by game – the German Games Industry Association. Nearly 1,700 entries are contained on the gamesmap.de interactive map (effective date: May 2021), including video games developers and publishers, media, technical and commercial service providers, and educational institutions offering degree courses related to video games.