Aussie Games Industry Growing Despite Global Economy

Australian developers are weathering the global economic slowdown better than those in the US or Europe, says Tom Crago, president of the Game Developers Association of Australia.

Speaking to GamesIndustry.biz, Crago admits 2009 has been a tougher year than 2008, but the Australian industry has coped better than most.

"We've been relatively resilient — certainly we've felt the effects of the downturn, and I'm sure most Australian companies are finding it more difficult to procure pay-for-service work than in the past. But we're weathering the storm — with the exception of Pandemic closing, there have been no casualties in the Australian market.

From the perspective of a lot of companies I know it's been an opportunity to fine-tune their sales processes as they've had to become more competitive, in order to win the types of jobs that they've become accustomed to.

So absolutely a tougher time, but ultimately we're hanging in there.

We're probably travelling a little better, actually [than the US and Europe] , although it must be remembered that we're a much, much smaller market."

Crago says that this is despite the lack of government subsidies for the local industry, an issue he claims he will continue to fight for.

GDAA's Tom Crago [GamesIndustry.biz]


Comments

    I'm surpised more bigger names havn't moved development here instead of Europe.

      It's probably got a lot to do with our board of classification, horrible international network connectivity and, as stated, lack of government subsidies.

      At least, that's what my uneducated guess would be.

    "We're weathering the storm."

    I hate Rudd terminology with a passion.

      It's better than the "Hang in there, baby!" poster of the kitten clinging to a tree branch.

      dude... that's a pretty common expression. its certainly no "detailed programmatic specificity"...

    "with the exception of Pandemic closing, there have been no casualties in the Australian market."

    According to Tom, the 30 developers who got fired from Transmission Games after they finished their big games for the year aren't considered casualties.

      I suspect Tom's interview with GI.biz was conducted prior to the events at Transmission last week.

        There were more losses than just transmission. Krome cut a fair few people at the start of August too.

        Not prior to the closure of FuzzyEyes though.

    Is he talking about the industry as in development, or the industry as in sales? I could understand Australia having year-over-year growth in software & hardware sales, but times seem pretty lean for development...

    If I was earning half a million a year I'd have favourable things to say about the industry as well.

    How about caping CEO salaries. That might help save the industry and peoples jobs to boot.

      Whilst I agree 100% with the sentiment, Crago actually earns bugger all compared to other CEOs in other entertainment industries.

      In fact, all workers in the games industry get shit pay in Australia, and instead of sucking up to Government and Publishers with every breath, Crago and the GDAA should be fighting to get the game industry employees better wages, paid overtime, better training for employees, and fairer publishing agreements in general.

    Maybe in you know, the next 8 years, our government will actually support the healthy development scene here with some legislation for oh I don't know, an R rating?

    Um, this isn't true at all, pretty much every game developer in Melbourne has had massive lay-offs.. and nobody is getting any new titles.. is this article a joke ? i know over 15 people in games here that have been layed off

Join the discussion!