Oz Fury Sales Outstripped the US, Asia & Europe Better Places To Develop?

aussie_sign.jpgOver at InvestorTV there's an extremely eye-opening talk with some of Australia's most prominent game developers. Included in the all-local mix are Tony Hilliam, CEO of Auran; Tom Crago, CEO of Tantalus and Krome Studios' CEO Robert Walsh. While Hilliam gets stuck explaining the downfall of Auran, Tom and Robert go over the positives of games development in Oz.

The first part of the interview sees Hilliam deconstruct the failure of Fury, citing poor sales in the US and Europe and the sheer size of World of Warcraft as contributing factors:

"Ultimately, sales of Fury were worse than our low case projections. We did OK in Australia, we were top 10 in Australia, but Europe was a complete write-off. In the US – again the Australian sales have nearly outstripped the US market altogether. When Australia is almost your biggest market, you have a problem."

It's not all rotten, though. Tom Crago paints a more alluring picture of the local development scene:

“I think the game development industry in Australia is in a great place in terms of the growth we’ve enjoyed,” said Crago. “Revenue-wise we’re in excess of $130 million.”

Understandably Hilliam doesn't completely agree with Crago's outlook. In fact, he's quick to direct developers away from our sunny shores:

“I’ve spent a lot of time in China and once they … they’re very good at copying things at the moment and I think once they get a bit more creative, they’re really going to be a force to reckon with.

“Asia and Eastern Europe are going to replace Australia as an outsourcing post. I don’t see a lot of confidence in seeing the thing grow and grow as it has done in the last 10 years.”

Ah man, Tony, why do you have to go and be so down on Oz?

Don't worry, there's more to the chat than Hilliam's negativity, so be sure to check out the InvestorTV link for the entire article.

Boom or gloom for battle-hardened video game studios [InvestorTV, via Sumea]


Comments

    WOW, Aussie sales overtook the Americans.
    Epic Fail.

    Ask anyone who worked at Auran, and they'll tell you that Fury failed because of useless management and poor design. Hilliam should just man up and admit that Auran has nobody to blame but themselves.

    high sales and yet no local server for australia, wonder why the game failed...

    Auran's problem really wasn't the industry at all, it was that they bet the whole farm on a product which in retrospect probably didn't deserve to be gambled on with those sort of stakes.

    He is right, though - Australia has no hope of competing with China for outsourcing of game development. Australian devs need to lead from the front, not support from the rear, because for every Australian you could hire you can probably get two or three equally skilled Chinese outsourcers. They should be leveraging that to their advantage.

    The federal government really needs to come to the table here and give them a tax break equal to what the give the film industry.

    Look at how well things like this have worked in Canada.

    And really it is a case of needing to be done 3 years ago, not in 3 years time when it is way too late.

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