Government Pulls Funding For Games: The Australian Industry Reacts

Government Pulls Funding For Games: The Australian Industry Reacts

Yesterday, as part of the budget the Federal Government pulled its $10 million of funding for the Australian Interactive Media Fund, meaning that the Government is no longer providing any funding for games in Australia. We spoke to some members of the local industry to get their reaction to the news.

Tony Reed, CEO, Game Developers’ Association of Australia

It is frustrating that the decision to cut the AIGF funding was done with absolutely no industry consultation. It feels like someone in Canberra saw the word ‘games’ and figured that was enough to run a red line through the program. The Australian game development industry could be a significant contributor to the economic, cultural and creative economies of Australia, and surely the development of a knowledge economy, trusting Australian innovation and creativity, is what should be cultivated if we’re to create a better future for our children, as the government is claiming to do?

The AIGF has only been around for a year. It has not had a chance to prove itself. Creating a game is labour-intensive, hard work and undertaken by highly skilled people. Game developers are the embodiment of a knowledge economy. Our sector is already producing creative content that Australians can be proud of and the AIGF encouraged that creativity as well as stable business practices.

Chris Wright, Managing Director, Surprise Attack

Cutting the Australian Interactive Games Fund might seem like a soft target for the Treasurer but it’s massively short-sighted. Games are a ridiculously large industry globally and Australian games developers make more than 90% of their revenue through exports, bringing money into the country to be taxed.

The Australian Interactive Games Fund was a tiny drop in the ocean compared to the support other countries such as Canada and the UK are putting behind their games development industries. However, it was a critical start to the government properly supporting the industry and should have been backed up by additional investment and tax rebates. Instead it’s being cut down as an easy $10 million short-term saving at the expense of much larger long-term returns.

We’ve helped many teams access both this fund and others such as Film Victoria and we see first-hand the impact it has. Just look at some upcoming Australian games such as Armello or Framed, both of which received support from Screen Australia that was critical to their development.

My hope is that this does not mean games will no longer receive any funding from Screen Australia as, prior to the introduction of the fund in 2012, games were eligible for other Screen Australia funds that applied to various types of digital projects.

Rebecca Fernandez, Director IGDA Sydney

The cut to the fund is a real blow to the Australian games industry. That money was needed to help bring us back out of the hole that we fell into during the global financial crisis. Suddenly the future for a lot of people and the industry as a whole is very uncertain. The progress and sustainable growth of the games industry in Australia that had been going so well in the last 12 months will now slow down quite significantly. The fund had been so carefully crafted in order to be helpful to individual studios, the industry and the economy. So much work was put into its creation that it is making me very angry that the money can be pulled without any notice or consultation. It sends a very clear message to me that the current government doesn’t know or care about the games industry in the slightest. Australia can’t survive on mining forever and there will need to be money-making industries to fill that void. The games industry last year made $70 billion worldwide – it would be nice to see Australia getting more of that money, but we need a bit of a helping hand in getting it.

Tonight’s IGDA Sydney meeting will be very subdued. I want to do my best to keep people in Australia and keep people interested in making awesome games, but it will be hard for me to be positive for people tonight.

Joshua Boggs, Creator of Framed, Director At Loveshack

Dear Abbot Government,

Thank you for cutting funding to the arts. It’s a true sign of character that you would know better than to commit to the Games Investment Fund. Thank you for listening to reason and turning down a funding scheme that would make you money in the next year. I’m glad things in Australia will not move forward until you are eventually ousted from office, so that we may stick to our old ways and refuse a younger, brighter generation from emerging. I’m glad we will not be on the forefront of what the can be done in the interactive medium, and not have a say in what the future could hold had you committed to the promise of this funding scheme.

Trent Kusters, League of Geeks

Here at League of Geeks we just funded our game, Armello, on Kickstarter for $305,000.

These funds will see our ambitious debut game finished and released.

This success is the result of a lot of hard work. Over three years out of hours, in fact. Over 30 of us have been doing it unpaid. In fact, we’re paying for it out of our own back pocket.

Well, not all of it. We received government support.

So here’s the long and short of it… without funding bodies like Screen Australia, Film Victoria, and Multimedia Victoria, Armello would not exist, League of Geeks probably wouldn’t either and I’d likely be tweaking combat timings 17,000 kms away for a major American studio.

Through us, these funding bodies have touched and supported so many talented Australian practitioners and companies. For others following in our footsteps to now be denied those same opportunities is severely unfortunate.

But I guess when you’re dedicated to fucking the elderly, the disabled, students, the unemployed, education, families and Australia’s youth, destroying a $10m games fund is all just in a day’s work.

Hey! New jets though!

Morgan Jaffit, Founder of Defiant Development

The Interactive Games Fund was a triumph. The people who worked to make it happen, inside the GDAA and inside Screen Australia (and other orgs) brought a genuine change to the Australian development community at a time when it was desperately needed. It was a bold move, at exactly the right point.

US publishers pulled their interests out of Australia, leaving a huge number of talented developers with no jobs. The Games Fund allowed those developers to create IP, start businesses, and build an Australian game culture that was locally owned and locally built.

It lead to games like Framed, which has won an IGF Award for Excellence in Design (pretty much an Oscar for games). It lead to games like Armello, which just raised $300k on Kickstarter. It lead to companies like Uppercut and Defiant. It lead to a new wave of game development in Australia, supported by events like Freeplay, GCAP, and PAX.

Dr Adam Ruch, Department Coordinator, SAE Creative Media Institute

The federal budget outlines some cuts that are a double-blow for me. On one hand, I am a PhD-holding post-graduate. I’m now one of the last students who will have graduated without having to pay a HECS/HELP debt on my higher degree. Its baffling why the Abbott government would rather demand payment from the few people who seek to further their education to that level, rather than by leveraging higher taxes on those whose only goal is to turn a profit.

The second blow is the cut to Screen Australia and the Interactive Games Fund. I teach game development students. This is an incredible blow to a burgeoning knowledge-based and creative arts industry. What am I going to tell my students now? Why would anyone choose to stay in Australia to develop games after this? Why would I stay here to teach it?

Rohan Harris, Flat Earth Games

Grant funds like those offered by Screen Australia aren’t just to prop up an inherently volatile industry like film or video games, they are also there to allow a full range of cultural expression.

One of the next games Flat Earth was working on was a piece of Australiana which would never make its money make due to its niche nature. It was going to be an open-world game set in the fascinating era of Sydney, 1931 – right before the bridge opened.

We will most likely have to go back the drawing board – and produce something more commercially marketable to the world at large instead.

Leigh Harris, Flat Earth Games

Our company exists and is self-sustaining as a result of having put in years of effort from our entire team onto a game with an uncertain future. Grant money isn’t a free hand-out, it’s an aid package for people who have already dedicated themselves to proving they can make great things.

And by every single metric I can think of, the Games Production Grant has been an unmitigated success. The government wants to announce cuts across the board, especially in the arts. It seems they care more about announcing cuts than about cutting things which have proven ineffective, because this grant program is the single reason the games industry in Australia survived all the closures of a few years ago.

Bruce Thomson, Nnooo

This is very disappointing news. We were expecting a reduction in funding in the spirit of “sharing the pain” but not an immediate cessation of this important initiative. The Interactive Games Fund represented an investment in the video game industry after large studio closures, a strong Australian Dollar and migration of experienced talent set the industry back. This investment was expected to be repaid many times over, helping to create employment, develop homegrown intellectual property and retain skilled and experienced professionals. Now we fear a further migration of business and talent to other countries like Canada who actively support their video game industry which, as a result, is thriving and creating significant wealth for the country.

Simon Joslin, The Voxel Agents

The Australian games industry, as small as it is, has consistently produced games with significant cultural impact, many of which have become artifacts of our time. We have proven that in our intensely competitive hit-driven environment we could succeed and bring home good news. The previous government’s choice to fund the industry was an excellent boost for today’s creative generation of developers, and it guaranteed growth creatively and financially. The funding was a huge building block of what we could become. The games market is huge, bigger than film, and our successes were taking bites out of that gigantic pie. The removal of funding will severely diminish further growth and strength building in our industry. Worst of all, much of the amazing talent to rise up in our country in recent years will likely find home abroad, and that’s really sad.

Giselle Rosman, Director, IGDA Melbourne

Last night in Melbourne around 100 game developers took their time to learn about emerging games technologies and share games and knowledge with likeminded people. At the end of the evening, I then had to tell them, ‘you know that great games fund run by Screen Australia that can help your start up and development of quality games? Well, that’s gone.’

What is a small amount on the scale of a Federal budget can make such a difference for local game development growth and its place in the both the global market and cultural spaces. To hear it had been cut before its effectiveness can be assessed is hugely disappointing. The goal of the fund, which was to be self-sustaining over time, has not had time to be assessed and the government has failed to consult with industry on the matter.

To make it worse, at 7pm last night it was announced that applications had to be received by COB that day to be considered. Already I’ve heard of several developers who have been working on applications to be submitted by the end of the week. That’s heartbreaking.


  • Make no mistake – the Abbot government, and probably more than 50 percent of Australia do not want to fund the development of games, or television or film or any sort of creative endevour. Real Australians know that their money is best spent on corporate welfare, sport, broken fighter jets and brutalising desperate, needy people.

      • Ah yes, the Collins class! Nothing better represents Australia’s pathetic attempts at projecting unnecessary military power than a fleet of rusting diesel bangers, clattering aimlessly about the timor sea.

        • I learnt recently that our present fleet of fighter jets only have 1 load of munitions as well. Our government is so obsessed with overseas Defence industries and new shiny toys that they completely neglect the logistical capacities and staffing requirements of our Defence Force.

      • Broken submarines developed by one of the least active militaries in the world these days.

        I remember arguing with a friend about whether we were looking at austerity under the Liberals, he told me I was being an idiot when I said that they didn’t understand how investing works… Yeah… I clearly am the idiot here. >.>

        • Not only broken submarines. Extremely loud stealth submarines that can be heard hundreds of kms away! Yay! We are ruled by morons.

          • Heat signature and exhaust do not factor into a submarine’s stealth. When any part of the submarine is surfaced, it is readily detectable by radar, so the heat signature and exhaust add no extra vulnerability.

    • Could you be any more of a sensationalist?

      Let’s be honest now, this government is just as crap as the last, but neither are actually in the business of “brutalising” anybody. The only difference is Tony Abbott is much easier to hate than Rudd or Gillard, but all 3 are idiots. Shorten is too. When you realize they are all a bunch of douchebags who barely know what they’re doing, especially the greens, you will see:

      None of them are actually trying to destroy the country. That’s just your run-of-the-mill party nepotism talking. It’s not your fault. You were probably raised/conditioned to see the merits of one party, and see only the perils of the other. A lot of people are brought up that way.

  • Really hits home seeing the opinions of industry leaders not even consulted in the cuts.

    • I guess that means they didn’t fork out $22,000 each to get a one-on-one with the treasurer. Hence no favours for them.

      • If they really cared the Australian gaming industry should of been aware that the Coalition would do this. Maybe they should have paid to have lunch with the treasurer, or organise a lobbying group to represent them and prevent the fund from being cut. The lack of consultation is the fault of both sides.

        • Oh there were many attempts to get in touch with the treasurer about this. No response to any correspondence was given.

        • Maybe they shouldn’t have to buy representation in a first world democracy.

    • Lack of consultation was one of the big criticism the then opposition had of the Labor government. What a bunch of hypocrites.

  • QQ

    This money was a waste and the fact that someone openly admits that they were making something that people didn’t want to buy (read: commercially unviable) explains everything you need to know about this fund. If you want to make a masterpiece that no one wants to buy, find a sugar daddy – don’t go hitting up the Australian taxpayer.

    • Yeah, because we shouldn’t pay for educational, or culturally relevant things.
      The money goes almost directly into wages and skill expansion, it is one of the few ‘grants’ that leads directly to growth and employment.
      But we need to be more shortsighted, and cut things that work, because they are easy to sell to the talkback radio public.
      Also, it is 10mill, it will make no practical difference to the budget debt.

      • If you want to pay for education or culturally relevant things, do so out of your own pocket.

        I’m sure it does go into wages and skill expansion but that is a waste of resources if put into a company that doesn’t produce anything that people actually want. Money poured into such a venture is wasted.

        And $10m is still a lot.

    • Way to ignore the context of the entire article and concentrating on one individual comment.

      Welcome to Kotaku though Mr Abbot, that red X in the top right corner is the log in button for politicians

      • Sorry, did I not read a bunch of people who benefit from these sorts of subsidies complaining about the government taking away their gravy train? Must have been some other article.

        • No. You read of leading professionals discuss the long-term effects of a short-sighted goal. Sitting there and blaming the recipients of the cut FOR the cut itself has to be one of the most ridiculous things I’ve read in a while. I’m trying to create a production company myself. I am under no false pretense that crowdfunding (read: donations) is the most likely option to fund gaming material for indie developers. I suggest you look up the fiscal analysis of all earnings grossed from gaming sales on a year to year basis to see why gaming should be viewed more lucratively, and thus supported.

    • Yeah totally, the billions in tax cuts that big businesses get are totally worthwhile, while a few million to support a new and growing industry in Australia who actually needs the support is totally unviable. Let these sponges go and find some other way to raise their measly funding on their own rather than relying on a government who’s role is supposed to be to support and nurture Australian cultural investments. At least now I can sleep easier knowing that the mining industry and the big banks can go on another 3 years without having to pay their fair share of tax while creative industries that the previous government pledged to support are having the rug pulled out from under them.

      • I only wish that Hockey et al had done to corporate welfare what they had done to this fund. I guess we have something to hope for next year (unlikely as it is).

    • Ever heard of arts grants? Please explain how they are commercially viable, or why they should continue whilst video games grants should stop.

      • They aren’t and they should be cut too. Give me 5 minutes as Arts Minister and I’d get rid of them too.

      • Go ahead – the Internet has a severe lack of echo chambers, where nerds can congregate and have a circle jerk. They are really in need of more.

    • You could have positioned your point a bit more delicately, but I don’t think you deserve quite so much hate. I’ll plus one you for supporting market economics, and in the hope that a rash of negatives doesn’t deter you from posting and adding to the mix of the community on Kotaku.

      • Hasn’t deterred me at all. After all, I got what I wanted in the Budget from this measure and they didn’t so they can cry all they want.

    • And conversely, if you make a hit, you don’t need government funding in the first place.

      If you’re running a viable business, you shouldn’t be relying on government grants to keep the doors open.

      • Absolutely.

        A company that can produce something people want to buy doesn’t need a subsidy. A company that can’t or won’t produce something people want to buy shouldn’t get a subsidy because you are wasting scarce resources (money, people, energy, time). Those resources cannot then be used on something people actually do want to buy, meaning everyone loses in the end.

        • I can see where you’re coming from and I agree that bailouts and subsidies should not be given to unprofitable companies. However this money is a for grants which is seed funding to get companies off the ground after which they can go on to be huge companies making money on their own and making returns for the government. There’s a big difference between subsidies and seed funding.

  • Caption This;

    “That is the size of the **** that I ****** last night.”

    (I’m sorry) (no I’m not)

  • Makes sense. Both major parties have shown a complete disregard for the gaming industry. Who wants to put their hands up and help an industry that’s immature, for children, adults who are in it should grow up and get a proper job and one that creates murderous children hiding in our schools?

    Let’s ignore the fact that it’s a multi billion dollar industry and can be beneficial to education and therapy. Let’s encourage any Australian talent to go overseas

    • Not true. Labor, and specifically Simon Crean, were very supportive of games. They introduced the Interactive Games Fund. If you’re trying to say “all pollies are the same” then you are absolutely wrong. One group of pollies supported this industry which is growing fast and earning export dollars. The other group of pollies just want to cut cut and cut.

      It’s incredibly frustrating whenever someone says “no they are both bad” because that kind of ignorance is why we get extremists such as Hockey and Abbott in charge of the economy.

      • But Michael Atkinson who did everything he could to prevent a R18+ rating for Australia is a Labor member. There are individuals who support the gaming industry more than others, and sure Labor did more than the Coalition looks like they will (as expected), but the gaming industry is still looked down on by both sides as a problem at all. Labor also only started the Interactive Games Fund in their last year of office when it looked even at that point that they would lose heavily in the election so was that in the attempt to get a few more votes their way? Call that cynical if you wish but when a ruling party senaes it’s going to lose it will introduce a number of policies and fundings that they know will be overturned when the new Government takes over just so they can say ‘look at all of these things the new Government has shut down’.

        • I think part of the problem is the Michael Atkinson was one man with an exceeding amount of power given that he had effective veto vote of a process that needed to be unanimous for archaic reasons.

      • Are you talking about the gaming industry at large or in Aus specifically? Because in Aus it’s not only small and pitiful, it has been continuing to shrink.

      • Calling Abbott an extremist is proving your own ignorance. Abbott is considered a moderate conservative amongst the liberals (and not as well liked in those circles as you might think). The problem is the left side of politics (and media…*cough* Fairfax…*cough* ABC) in this country is skewed so hard on the scale that anything slightly right of centre is considered “extreme”.

        • I just hope the ABC have their funding cut. Any time I tune in its Labor party greenwashing propoganda.

  • Make games. Not jets. What a waste of money. This whole situation is wrecking my brain.

  • Well that’s what you terrible gamers get for always pirating the governments money! Now we’ll spend that money on anti-piracy software to catch all you evil gamers in the act of piracy! Name me one time except for France in which that didn’t work! I thought so!

    Now if you’ll excuse me, we have to set up this anti-cyberbullying system to punish all you evil gamers for calling someone fat on Facebook because they haven’t figured out the block option.

  • Suprised that you didn’t reach out to Firemonkeys Studios for comment (perhaps you did and they declined/not respond in time)

    @carrotcolossus you’re comment is based of the only comment Rohan Harris from Flat Earth Games said…you have to remember studio’s don’t get money from the fund straight away…they have to apply for it

    I suspect that some of these studio’s who are independent and producing some good games will hope that they get noticed enough to be picked up by a major studio (such as EA picking up then Firemint Studios back in 2011) or rely on other means of funding (kickstarter etc.) or simply close shop

    and yes a $10 million fund for the entire industry is nothing and it should have never been cut (or at least consult with the people in the industry)

    • You know where else they can apply to get money? A bank, which is where they should be going if they can’t get funding from a bigger company. Why should taxpayers be handing out money to make games no one wants?

  • Doesn’t surprise me. I mean as far as I can see the majority of the Government is mostly old folks who don’t understand this generation of internet, technology and games. There may be a bright light or two within Parliament, but the rest just see this stuff as a waste of time since I suppose they associate it with the ‘dole bludger’ culture of young people just goofing around instead of working.

  • Which ever way you slice it, with the funding or without, the majority were and will get nothing. When there was funding, it was provided to a certain small group in the metros ONLY. Most developers, film makers from outside of certain states and regions, cities were getting nothing anyways.

    This is sensationalizing something that affects a very small group of people. There are game developers that I know who could have made their games into a AAA *IF* they could have had gotten some funding and could have made better stuff than the Halfbricks and Firemints. I am not a fan of the current budget either, but c’mon at least the playing field is leveled.

    Do not be surprised if the folks that got games funding now suddenly get a series of entrepreneurial grants from the new funds allocated, so each game/project might become a project. It will never cease to amaze at how things work…

  • This news is pretty sad. There are still lots of avenues for game developers to get funded outside of government funding, though, so it’s not the end of the world.

  • “What am I going to tell my students now? Why would anyone choose to stay in Australia to develop games after this? Why would I stay here to teach it? ”

    If he is only teaching it and/or they are only studying or working because of this taxpayer money, then they are all in it for the wrong reasons.

  • Yet they’re happy to spend millions killing sharks off WA for no apparent reason. Go figure.

    • And $245M on religious education. While at the same time increasing uni fees and deregulating them.

      Pointless spending up. Spending on culture/education/science down. Way to go…

  • On the plus side, the next 20-30 years will see these fossils retired or dead and a whole new generation of sensibilities in parliament. I for one cannot wait for the next great change of guard.

  • Who’s to say in a few years it won’t come back in some form? Obviously the gaming industry isn’t performing quite as well as it could be after a 10 million dollar injection. Sometimes you havd to cut your loses I guess.

    Guess I’ll get downvoted for saying that

    • One thing I can be glad about working in the games industry is that I don’t have to suffer ignorant fools at work. Clearly you don’t work in the industry – thankfully – as I can see you are in the habit of responding to articles without reading them first.

      You said… “Obviously the gaming industry isn’t performing quite as well as it could be after a 10 million dollar injection.”

      Obviously? – are you serious? How can it be ‘obvious’ when it was clearly stated several times throughout the article, “The goal of the fund, which was to be self-sustaining over time, has not had time to be assessed and the government has failed to consult with industry on the matter.” – Giselle Rosman.

    • I’d say downvoting would be pretty harsh, as you do have a point. That being said, AIGF was only made available for about a year until it was pulled at this point of time, right? Well, not only do games obviously take time to produce (a couple of years for most, unless you’re a quickly thrown together iPhone game, which doesn’t really need a grant anyway), but anyone who submitted for funding had to go through a veto process as far as I’m aware, and I’m not entirely convinced that this would be a quick thing done in a lunch break. We’re starting to see some success stories come out of it (such as Armello and Framed), and I’m sure we’ll see more in future from the projects that managed to get in before the cutoff, but the government expecting the fund to have returned more than what was put into it in about a year is just idiotic. The AIGF could have definitely continued to do great things for the games development industry in Australia, but with the budget so focused on clearing money so that recreating kickass scenes from Top Gun is possible in the next fiscal year, rather than the future of Australia, there wasn’t going to be any chance of that happening.

  • I’d wager the Libs will still get another term in government despite all of these terrible choices.

    To quote Thulsa Doom: “People have no grasp of what they do”.

    • You really think going back to the clusterf*ck that is labour right now would be an improvement?

      That’s why I’m so over politics right now, there’s just no viable alternative.

      • Kodos: It’s a two party system! You have to vote for one of us! Man: He’s right, this is a two-party system. Man 2: Well, I believe I’ll vote for a third-party candidate. Kang: Go ahead, throw your vote away.

        I’m sorry if I gave the impression I wanted Labour in power! I find both major parties are too right wing and the alternative is too left wing!

    • Yep. At least another 2 terms. The Coalition will pay off the debt just in time for Labor to con their way back into government. The cycle will continue.

  • Why should the government spend money on the Australian Gaming Industry? People need to stop being lazing and asking the government for money. A business takes hard work and dedication, otherwise it will end up like the Automotive industry. A 15% tax on all imported cars, in my opinion that’s unfair. If that industry can’t compete with the world then let that industry go. It isn’t the governments job to keep the Australian Gaming industry going, it’s all up to the people who get the business going.

    • Before you open your mouth next time to make some very incorrect assumptions, perhaps you might like to get your story straight. This article is about the Australian Games Industry – NOT the Australian GAMING industry (a.k.a. gambling). They are two totally different industries.

        • That a failing industry shouldn’t just be left to fail with a pat on the back with “good luck with the hard work” as the above comment suggests, whilst thriving industries’ are getting their balls licked. And it’s their fault for “relying on the government”.

          You think they grew our major industries to where they are without the government? Okay dude. Keep it real.

          • I think your missing the point. The government shouldn’t have to spend money on Australian Gaming industry, it needs to be all up to the individual(‘s )who want to start off their own business. He/she could take out a business loan, but then running the risk of becoming bankrupted, but that’s the point. People spend hours trying to get their business where it needs to be by being hard working. The issue these days is a lot of people expect for the government to pay for everything but the fact of the matter is, that’s just not feasible. People that are hard working and dedicated to making their business a success always end up being one of the best business around.

          • I don’t know. I’ve never thought about it. I do know that no business is viable if it relies on government funding to keep the doors open. If these companies were producing products that sold, this wouldn’t be an issue.

          • Ever heard of a website called Flickr? Got bought by Yahoo a decade ago? The people who built it in Canada got started with government funding for a game.

    • Absolutely, not to mention the unfairness of forcing productive companies to compete with ones propped up by taxpayer funds. I mean, how are you going to get private funding if you can fail and your competitors can’t?

    • I’m glad someone is actually trying to make a rational point other than “why should the government waste money on games?”. I’ll return the favour by trying to make my own valid point, rather than “screw you, GAMES!”.

      whilst you do make several valid points, there are several other factors to consider;

      * a games company basically needs to survive off zero revenue, till a game is released. Whilst i may start a hot dog stand and see revenue the same day, a game developer and its staff need to wait for weeks after the development of a title has concluded. In rare cases, this means months, but 90% of the time, we’re talking 1-3 YEARS.

      * the fund was a mere $10 million. Sure, its a lot of money… But lets look at some other funding the government provides… LIKE A $230+ MILLION DOLLAR GRANT FOR RELIGIOUS EDUCATION! Dont get me wrong, im not an atheist. I am religious… but religious education is the responsibility of the family, and the church.

      * Investing money in the Australian games industry, has the potential to grow the industry in Australia. Thus, Australia may have a chance to retain its talent, and decrease unemployment.

      What was that $230m dollar Religious Education grant doing for Australia again???

      • @markserrels – I really think some of these points need to be elaborated on…. get writing good sir!

      • I don’t get it, what does the government get out of providing a fund for religious education in the first place?

        • More opportunities for kiddies to be touched inappropriately, thus driving more people in to the hospitals and court systems and prisons?… and well.. we all know that these things are dirt cheap to run/maintain/improve. Also, when you consider the lack of support and financial assistance that private/religious schools get compared to public schools.. I dunno how they keep themselves afloat. All those schools, filled with poor people who can’t afford to pay for a well respected public education. You know, those same people who can’t afford good technology like small cars, or hybrid vehicles. They have to drive around in their gas guzzling 4WD’s and feel guilty about polluting the earth while they sit all alone in their 7 seat vehicle, stuck in traffic. They make baby Jesus cry.

          • The government has certainly always seemed to think that the public health system was dirt cheap to run.

      • – All companies have zero revenue until their product gets off the ground – this is nothing unique to the games industry. All investment decisions will factor this in.

        – Just because chaplains get $230m doesn’t make this fund any more worthwhile. Both are bad ideas (and I am religious too).

        – every industry who has benefited from tariffs/subsidies makes the claim that they will help them get off the ground and it never works. Subsidies always cripple industries and cause mal-investment into companies that cannot produce something people are really willing to pay money for.

      • The way I see it, the Schools Chaplaincy program is funded mainly by cuts to the CSIRO, ABC, and AIGF.
        The Australian people don’t need science, public broadcasting, or games. What they do need is a healthy dose of Christian proselytizing for students in public schools, in lieu of accredited counselors.

        • You do realise the school chaplains program was around under the previous Govt too, right?

          • Yes, I am well read as to the introduction of this program by the Howard government in 2006, and the legal challenges and rebuttals by various parties including Labor.

            That does not change my stance that secular state schools are no place for a chaplain. If the students require support, an accredited counselor is much more suited to the task. However, there should be nothing stopping a student from seeking religious guidance outside of the school setting if the student believes it to be required.

          • Yet the ALP kept it going under the direction of godbotherer KRudd, and then atheist Gilltard. If the mishmash ALP wouldn’t ditch it, why would another leader with core religious values try to? A little hypocritical no? Apparently it’s not the policy, but the side of politics it comes from.

            …and just for the record, I totally agree with you about the chaplains program in public schools. It should be ditched ASAP.

    • A 15% tax on all imported cars, in my opinion that’s unfair.

      Man I wish it was only that. We pay over 50% more for some cars. You can buy, for instance a 2006 BMW for half the price in the UK (no steering conversion required) or the US.

    • There are many governments which support the games industry. America, the UK, and Canada all give government money to attract to game developers to set up and remain in their countries.

      And what do you know?! Those countries are know for their amazing games industries!

  • Let’s use the word ‘government’ not ‘Canberra’ Canberra loves games, home to 2K Aus and over the next decade a $50m games campus at AIE 🙂

  • “figured that was enough to run a red line through the program.”

    My gut says this sums it up.

  • The amount of jobs nowadays in Australia where people have to work for years volunteer or earn low pay is huge, I’M ONE OF THEM! after i graduate at the end of the year i will have to work for free! doing psychology/counseling just to even be considered for a job, its not just the gaming industry that’s taking hits, it’s everyone! so stop complaining and get to grips with reality, if these cuts weren’t made the country would be in even bigger strife than it is now by 2016, not too mention their will be another economic crash, its not a question of ‘IF’ its a matter of ‘when’ and I for one will be glad this country isn’t in massive amounts of debt when that happens otherwise we’ll end up like Greece who lived beyond their means for years… now their country is on life-support

  • Certainly the impotent are pure. *delete this comment. Too many replies so it won’t make sense.

  • It’s okay guys, it’s okay. There’s still $245m left for the school chaplaincy program for the next 5 years.


    remember, you need fast internet to be able to play, and download games.

  • I’d be okay with the government not funding interactive media, if that meant they would keep their big honkers out of censoring it too.

  • Are the R&D tax subsidies getting canned too? Did anyone check on them? I thought that they might make for a better industry booster than the startup funds because they ensure that existing businesses invest in their futures.

  • so that was 11 people getting 10mill? sorry I don’t get it. that money is better spent elsewhere, these people have nothing good to offer anyways based on what I just saw.

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