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Video game funding axed in federal budget

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Real Racing HD, by Melbourne studio Firemint took the iPad world by storm. The studio also made Flight Control.

Real Racing HD, by Melbourne studio Firemint took the iPad world by storm. The studio also made Flight Control. Photo: Ken Irwin

Video game developers have taken a $10 million hit in the federal budget with the axing of the Australian Interactive Games Fund.

The fund was established by Labor in 2012 to pump $20 million into home-grown game development over three years on the back of a successful run by Australian developers internationally. It was part of a strategy to foster creative industries and growth in the sector that employs designers, musicians, actors and software developers.

Some $5 million was allocated in each of the first two years, with the remaining $10 million to be spent in 2014-2015.

Budget papers show the fund will now end prematurely on July 1.

Australian game development has struggled in recent years because of high labour costs. Generous government subsidies in countries such as Canada have prompted the major studios to abandon their Australian operations.

AAP

1 comment

  • So people, like my son, who works in this industry have no future in Australia.
    First the industry was destroyed because of the GFC -- strong dollar forced international companies to close their Australian branches forcing the majority of people into unemployment. These people started new indie groups BUT needs some assistance to set-up shop -- therefore the minuscule mount given to the industry over the past 2 years and no NOTHING.
    Don't the government realize that this is n multi billion industry that can generate a large income for Australia that they just killed off ???

    Commenter
    Nicolai
    Location
    Melbourne
    Date and time
    May 14, 2014, 8:32PM
    Comments are now closed