Develop Magazine has published a week of features examining and exploring the games sector in Scotland, kicking off with a provocative piece of editorial asking if Scotland could become the next Finland?
Scotland is a nation that potentially faces major political changes this year, but how will that affect the region’s impressive output of video games? And how can the local talent base shine when it is constantly overshadowed by Rockstar and its Grand Theft Auto series? James Batchelor speaks to the nation’s developers to find out
It’s no secret that Scotland is a hotbed of games development talent.
In our industry, the nation has become synonymous with blockbusters past and present: Lemmings, Crackdown, Minecraft: Xbox 360 Edition and, of course, Grand Theft Auto.
While local developers are justifiably proud to be based in the same region as the indomitable Rockstar North and draw inspiration from the studio’s world-conquering success, the attention GTA receives is as much a blessing as it is a curse.
There are close to 100 development studios in the region – not to mention a plethora of services companies that specialise in audio, trailers and so forth – that face the tough challenge of shouting over the noisy GTA juggernaut and highlighting the other great work done in the region.
“Lemmings, Crackdown and GTA are all essentially made by the same core group of people, so it’s time to create some new successful and famous games,” says Ludometrics founder David Thomson. “We need a strong balance of companies, and right now we’re heavily weighted to GTA – a series that is owned by a US company which gathers all the profits elsewhere.”
Team Junkfish’s lead designer and producer Simon Doyle agrees adding: “All roads lead back to [GTA creator] DMA Design. You can’t attend a local event without tripping over someone who started there.”
You can read the whole article over on the Develop website… It’s well worth a read.