The British game industry has received a much awaited tax break after seven years of discussion. It will bring much awaited money into the UK games industry and see growth in the sector.
During the debate on whether the UK could be granted a tax break halted by the government and the EU. Has seen the closure of once successful studios and has seen talent move abroad to country’s such has Canada which has granted tax breaks to the industry for many years. With the tax breaks in Canada it has seen large companies like Ubisoft and indie developers such Phil Fish flourish.
Tax breaks in the UK films industry has boosted that sector by increasing the amount of movies and television shows made in Britain. Without the tax break it would see culturally British games decrease. This is also not the first time that the tax breaks have been attempted before. In 2010 the labour government approved the breaks but this was then overturned later in the year by the collation.
The UK’s tax break will not be as generous as Canada but will look more like the tax break available in France. The tax breaks in France have allowed companies like Ubisoft to do well. It has also seen companies like Sony put money into studios like Quantic Dream.
The new tax break will work on a point system to judge if a company can receive it. The companies will receive points for things like if the game is cultural relevant for example if the game promotes the UK. Points will also be earned by being based in the UK and hiring staff from the UK.
Around 25% of games companies already qualify for the tax break. More companies are likely to change in order to fit into the bracket that will see them receive the tax breaks.
Jason Kingsley the owner of UK developer Rebellion thinks that the tax break will add around one hundred and eighty million pounds into the UK games industry. With this money it is a hope that the UK can become one of the top three game making nations in the world.
As a games design student I am hopeful that the tax cuts will help me get a job after I finish my course. It will allow studios to hire more staff thus creating more places for students to get places in the industry. It will also help students who want to set up companies after leaving university as they will have a bigger income due to paying less tax on the games they create.
I think it may be a year or so until we start seeing the effects of this tax break but it can only have a positive impact on the UK’s games industry. We now have to aim to get in line with Canada before we can claim to be one of the best counties in the world to create video games.