3_0_ScanMag_66_July_2014_Text_Svetlana:Scan Magazine 1
: ME G E H N L T AMI A I EC H G SP NIS FIN
A small country, Finland lacks any significant domestic gaming market, resulting in an eco system of a tightly-knit developer community of world class. Left: PlayStation 4 session at an IGDA Finland event. Photo: Mikko Karsisto / IGDA Finland. Right and above: The Finnish Game Industry Gala. Photo: Mikko Karsisto / Neogames.
The success of the Finnish game industry:
Something in the water The Finnish game industry has been growing dramatically during the past few years. In 2013, the total turnover of the industry was estimated at 900 million, with a whopping 260 per cent growth from the previous year. That magic limit of one billion euros is getting closer. By Suvi Latva, Neogames Finland
The success has also convinced international investors. Between 2011 and 2014, private, mostly overseas investments in Finland equalled 1.73 billion USD, enabling great opportunities to create new success stories. At the moment, the most well-known Finnish game companies are Supercell with Clash of Clans and Rovio with Angry Birds, but they are just the tip of the iceberg. Along with top-grossing mobile game companies, there are very strong console developers, including Remedy, the developer of Alan Wake, and Housemarque with its award-winning Play Station 4 launch title, Resogun.
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So why has Finland become one of the worldâ€™s top game developer countries? Finland is a small country. Only 5.5 million people live here. Consequently, there is no significant domestic market for games, meaning that Finnish studios do not see each other as direct competitors. On the contrary, for them, the success of a studio in the local eco system is likely to improve their own chances as well. The countryâ€™s small size has led to a tightly-knit and a well-organised professional developer community, where game development is still nurtured as an industry of passion. This is not surprising, as the community has its roots in the strong
hobbyist culture built around the local demo scene. However, a professional community was built by IGDA Finland and other key actors, organising local developer meetings all over the country and reaching up to 300-400 participants. There is also great support from the public authorities. Tekes, the Finnish Funding Agency for Innovation, had already started to support the local game industry in 1998. This public support can be used, for example, to leverage private investments and share the risk. Last but not least: thanks to Nokia, Finns have been familiar with mobile game development for quite some time. And, of course, there is just something in the water. For more information, please visit: www.neogames.fi
Promoting Brand Scandinavia. Featuring interview with Lars Mikkelsen.