Game industry in the UK and Scotland will continue to grow.
There are several factors that make the UK, one of the largest games markets in the world. In 2018, it was worth a record of £5.7bn (in part thanks to titles like PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds and Fortnite released in 2018). The two online-only games secured the increase in revenues for gaming software to a record of £2bn (according to Ukie).
The video games sector now accounts for more than half of the UK's entire entertainment market. The industry is worth £3.86bn ($4.85bn) - more than double its value in 2007 (according to Entertainment Retailers Association (ERA)). That makes it more lucrative than video and music combined. And that is truly impressive!
So let’s shed some light on statistics, hot spots, and search categories you should follow when planning or just considering your game UK jobs, or video game jobs UK search. We’ll also look at some interesting facts and give a few tips on how to go about researching and choosing the best hubs in game jobs UK.
Let’s head north, and I mean deep north! A recent study by the University of Glasgow (2019) said that the economic significance of Scotland’s game industry, widely recognised as one of the country’s most lucrative sectors, may have been underestimated by a lack of the right type of data. Not good news. Moreover, this can be blamed due to a range of circumstances, for one is the creative nature of the industry and second, it’s the fluidity of the business models in it. So if, for example, we think about art jobs Scotland, we mostly think about 'art jobs Edinburgh’, where the GTA by Rockstar Games was developed (being the most financially successful media product), and adding to the list, few recent AAA openings such as Epic Games and Build A Rocket Boy happened too. But there is also a city called Dundee famous for its ties to Minecraft by 4J Studios and their pride the- Abertay University, a leading games school in Europe, that continues to attract the best young talent from around the world to study and work there. The industry in Dundee continues to innovate and a new generation of start-ups is now emerging. Scotland remains a very attractive hub and, indeed, the future looks bright.
List of studios in Scotland - https://scottishgames.net/companydirectory/
And so with that ‘brightness’ in mind, we are descending to the south of England to where exactly the ties of Abertay University connect with the University of Brighton Connected Futures. Brighton is a growing video games hub in the UK and home to the annual Develop Conference, which each July attracts thousands of video game industry experts and a 3-day party in this seaside town. The city of Brighton and the university are now recognised as a hub for the industry which last year alone (2018) generated $135 billion worldwide. Yes, art jobs Brighton and gaming jobs Brighton puts this city on the top of the searches, with likes of Hangar 13, The Chinese Room, Hi-Rez Studios, many more and of Unity Technologies is HQ’d there too. All that and more makes this area a very attractive destination, and if you know of someone that is looking into game tester jobs UK this is probably one of the top places to start with. The rent here is not as high as it is in London. Food for thoughts.
Now, let’s for example take a look at animation jobs UK. Without a doubt, some locations are in a much better place for a career in animation. The industry in the UK is characterised by a large number of small independent studios and there are around 469 studios, including those involved in the games sector, employing about 5,400 people. The UK's animation sector is a creative success story, you can aim your search at animation jobs London and conduct the biggest hunt or alternatively aim it at animation studio Manchester and surrounding areas where you can find Travellers Tales Games, Sony Playdemic, and Rockstar Leeds. And make sure to include the average animation salary UK in your planning. This varies between studios and reflects the location and standards of living, and of course the diverse price of the renting market. Researching your art jobs Nottingham will bring up studios such as Deep Silver and Sumo Digital, these locations are cheaper to live in with significant differences in rent prices. Worth to mention here is, for example, when the search for art jobs Cambridge, where Ninja Theory, the mighty creator of Hellblade: Senua's Sacrifice (winner of 5 BAFTAs in 2018) lives or art jobs Oxford where you can find Rebellion, these areas will be more expensive to live in as they are located in a closer distance to London. There are also spots in the Midlands, such as Royal Leamington Spa, famous for the Playground Games, and their shiny racing titles Forza, that area has also made a mark on the UK gaming map. But I wanted to go to the last place on our exploration trip- gaming jobs London, and this should take you down many different alleys, there’re so many different studios of all sizes, which is making it the perfect place to start. It’s the biggest hub for movie and entertainment, tech start-ups, etc., but it also makes it positioned the best for game developers London search. Here we have Rocksteady Studios, and their Batman: Arkham Knight (fastest-selling game of 2015, and winner of multiple awards, including 2016 BAFTA), there is also their Monument Valley, which was downloaded over 26 million times, with 20 international awards (including BAFTAs for both Best Mobile and Handheld, and Best British game).
London is Europe’s number one tech hub for so-called 'unicorns' - fast-growing companies that are valued at $1bn or more - and attracted more foreign direct investment (FDI) than any other city in 2018. It is also the top European destination for investment by US venture capitalists, drawing down $4.36bn in funds over five years, compared to $3.76bn for Berlin (source: London & Partners).
UK has been well-renowned for games talent, and pioneer in AI, VR/AR, and mobile. It has been ranked as the world's third-best country for its ability to attract, retain, train, and educate skilled workers (according to the Global Talent Competitiveness Index, published by INSEAD in 2017). Among the UK's creative screen-based industries, video games delivered the highest rate of labor productivity in 2016 at £83,800 a year. UK higher education is also a strong supporter of the games industry. Sixty universities or colleges provided 215 undergraduate and 40 master video game courses throughout the UK in 2014 (source: Creative Skillset quoted by Ukie). Of these, 23% were in London, 18% in the West Midlands, and 16% in Yorkshire and the Humber.
So if you are thinking 'VR games London’ and/or ‘VR experiences London’ then you're on the right track. The VR/AR market in the UK is doing rather good, with numbers that are coming from job search platforms shows that there has been an increase of 6% on average each month in vacancies. With top locations being, yes we are talking here about- London (32% of vacancies), second Manchester, then Cambridge, Hemel Hempstead (rank due to Epson’s HQ), and Bristol (home of VRWC).
The UK games industry directly employs 20,430 FTEs in development, publishing, and retail roles, which contribute £1.52bn indirect GVA to the economy (source: Ukie). It is estimated that a further 26,241 jobs are indirectly supported by game studios.
This workforce has the youngest profile in the creative industries and earns above the creative industries average (source: Creative Skillset, May 2015). It also has the highest number of jobs in mobile gaming across the EU 28, with an estimated 5,000 roles in 2015 (source: Deloitte/ISFE report quoted in Ukie fact sheet). Games orgaisations can draw from the biggest population of professional tech developers in Europe - more than 300,000 compared to the 113,000 calculated for Paris (source: Slush). According to a UK Parliamentary report from March 2017, superfast broadband of at least 24Mbps was available to 90% of UK premises. Games companies operating in the UK have access to sophisticated support services for game publishing, marketing, server capacity, and IT infrastructure.