The Queensland government has launched the expansion to its Post-Production, Digital, and Visual Effects (or PDV) Offset to include digital games alongside filmmakers working on post-production and post-visual effects within the state. The rebate was originally slated to come into effect in July 2022 but has been launched early in the run-up to the federal election.
When the rebate was announced, Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said that the 15 per cent rebate for video game projects aims to attract more local, interstate and international games developers and studios to open up shop in Queensland.
“My Government’s Post-Production, Digital and Visual Effects (PDV) incentive is the most competitive on Australia’s eastern seaboard and is already a success, drawing screen productions here which create jobs for hundreds of our state’s screen experts,” said Paluszczuk.
“By adding this new games’ incentive, local and international studios will be further motivated to outsource the creation of valuable game titles to Queensland, while our own locally based developers will be supported to create original games content right here.”
Among the changes is a lowering of the threshold required to access the PDV program and a reduction of the cost barrier of production from AU$500,000 to AU$250,000. The thinking behind this change is that it will offer a more level playing field for both smaller developers and larger studios alike to access the offsets.
Queensland becomes the third state in the last two years to announce a tax rebate or offset for game developers. NSW announced a 10% offset with a threshold of $500,000 in September this year, and South Australia announced a 10% rebate with a threshold of $250,000 in June 2020.
IGEA, the Independent Games and Entertainment Association, has thrown its support behind the decision. “IGEA welcomes the release of the guidelines for Queensland’s very competitive 15% Digital Game Incentive.
“This generous level of government support will be a huge boost for the sector creating more employment, investment and export revenue for Queensland, ensuring game developers can deliver high-quality products to an ever-growing global games audience.”
The rebate’s announcement has already prompted moves within the local industry. Melbourne developer PlaySide has since opened a Gold Coast studio in anticipation of the new incentives.