Develop magazine has published its Top 100 list of the best game developers in the UK. The list features several companies from the Scottish Games Network. Develop editor Michael French says in the introduction that the studios were judged on:
…their history, commercial success, reputation and potential.
Develop has also, for the first time, compiled a comprehensive list of game development companies in the UK. The first time such a list has been created. For England, Northern Ireland and Wales anyway…
The directory also points out the dominance of mobile projects within the UK. The majority of developers are working on iPad, iPhone and Android, with PC and Mac following.
Develop highlights several clusters or hotspots in the UK too, pointing out that London has 111 developers, while Scotland is listed as having 73. We’d argue with that – and the actual list of companies they’ve listed as active, but it’s good to see the rest of the country catching up with Scotland…
The studios who hit the Hot Hundred are (in alphabetical order):
- 4J Studios – Noted for its work on Minecraft and handling of the biggest intellectual properties
- Denki – included for it’s strong legacy of gaming, BAFTA-winning Quarrel and work on HTML5 gaming
- Guerilla Tea – Noted for BAFTA nomination, work on external IP and work on educational games
- Quartic Llama – Made the list for its work with the National Theatre Of Scotland on Other
- Rockstar North – Included for its work on something called GTA V which promises to be quite popular
- Ruffian Games – Listed for its work on Kinect projects and new indie game, Tribal Towers
- Swallowtail Games – Noted for winning Dare to be Digital and creation of Tick Tock Toys
- Tag Games – Listed for work with high profile clients, Hotel Vegas & Hotel GB projects and recruiting
Congratulations to each and every single company who made the list, you all deserve it hugely.
On the other hand we’re confused, perplexed and baffled by the omission of a large number of companies from the list, despite their history, commercial success, reputation and potential. Where are Binary Pumpkin, Blazing Griffin, Chris Sawyer Games, Chunk, Dave Sapien, eeGeo, EM Studios, Firebrand Games, GameVial, Hunted Cow, One Thumb Mobile, Reloaded, StormCloud, Tsumanga or YoYo Games?
All have very strong claims to be on the list and in many cases are pushing boundaries in terms of their games, experience, business models, player numbers, projects and very good reputations. At least here in Scotland…
We’re going to assume that maybe the rest of you haven’t been visible enough to be considered.
Now, on to the (mostly) comprehensive and (more or less) definitive Company Directory…
It’s… OK. It inexplicably misses a number of active companies in Scotland which are working on games and in some cases have released many titles over several years. Which is odd since it would seem their original reference list is one you might be familiar with.
If we’re going to be tiresomely pedantic, one final criticism would be that the locations on the maps in the directory for Dundee (Fife) and Edinburgh (Fort William) needs a little bit of work
Anyway, we’re thrilled to have inspired and encouraged Develop and the wider UK games industry to contribute to and create such a directory.
Now onwards, to innovate again! Love and respect to you all…