New Zealand game development studios have released a total of 73 commercial titles in the last year, says the New Zealand Game Development Association.
NZGDA chairperson Stephen Knightly said: “Gaming is a high tech, high growth industry that is at the forefront of digital business models. We’ve learnt how to make money from business models like digital distribution, freemium, virtual goods and crowdfunding. Exporting and acting global from day one have been key to the industry’s growth.”
Of the 73 games released most were for iPhones, websites and Android smartphones. Unsurprisingly, 97% were digital downloads, and 99% of sales were exports with North America and Europe being the two largest markets.
Two highlights from the New Zealand industry’s year included Grinding Gear Games’ free-to-play action-RPG Path of Exile securing over USD$1 million in crowdfunding, and social game platform Small Worlds adding one million new users less than three months after launching in Brazil.
According to Statistics New Zealand’s Screen Industry Survey 2010, royalties from intellectual property accounted for 13% of the local industry’s revenue, compared to only 2.7% for other industries monitored.
The size of the New Zealand game development industry has nearly doubled in the past two years, and now employs 380 full-time equivalent staff, says the NZGDA. Artists account for 39% of those positions, another 39% are programmers, and the remainder is largely accounted for with marketing and management roles.
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