The growth of the video game industry threatens the book's leadership | Culture

The growth of the video game industry threatens the book's leadership | Culture


The Spanish video game industry multiplied its turnover in more than two years (from 314 million euros to 713 in 2017). Its rate of growth has accelerated to the point that, if maintained, in 2023 will exceed the current turnover (2,319 million) of the jewel in the crown of Spanish culture, the publishing sector, according to the videogame industry directory. presented yesterday in Madrid by the Minister of Culture and Sports, José Guirao, with the telematic support from Mexico of the Minister of Industry, Trade and Tourism, Reyes Maroto.

The general message sent by the Spanish videogame industry is optimistic, despite its small size – 88% of companies bill less than two million euros and 74% employ less than 10 people. The experts foresee an interannual expansion of 23% on average from 2018 and consider that it is a conservative estimate.

For its part, the publishing sector grew very slightly between 2016 and 2017, according to the official record of the ministry, and did so for the fourth consecutive year, breaking the downward trend that caused the crisis and made it hit bottom in 2013, with 2,182 millions of billing. In any case, the 2017 figure (2,319 million), is still far from the peak of the statistics recorded in 2008 (3,186 million). The third most relevant cultural industry in this economic section in Spain is the cinema, whose turnover in 2017 was 628 million euros (604 million in box office collections and 24 in advertising in cinemas). In this computation does not enter the cinema on platforms on-line or the television audiovisual.

The growth of the video game industry threatens the book's leadership

From its subtitle, the White Paper of the Spanish development of video games 2018. A new golden age of the Spanish video game, prepared by the Spanish Association of Production Companies and Developers of Video Games and Entertainment Software (DEV) points out the optimism that the sector is experiencing. A series of successful launches, both critical and public from last year, have contributed to this, especially in the independent sector. Do Not Feed the Monkeys, Moonlighter, They are billions and, above all, the great international acceptance of Gris have been clear triumphs for the Spanish video game, with creativity as one of the main values ​​of the sector. All of them, however, were distributed internationally by a foreign company.

Ethical dimension

In the presentation held at the Spanish Foreign Trade Institute (Icex), Guirao said: "Like film or literature, video games transmit values ​​and culture and provoke emotions. But also, they are a key entertainment for young people. That is why I call for the ethical dimension to be a central axis of this industry to instill good values ​​for our youngest citizens ". "This industry is one of the innovative sectors that drive the national economy. Spain is called to be a world leader in this sector, "said Maroto.

If you descend to the smallest letter, however, doubts arise. The sector continues to accelerate its growth (year-on-year to 2017 is 15.7%), but the study indicates that the majority of billing is absorbed by large companies, as well as 59% of new hires. And these big firms include branches of international giants like King (Candy Crush), Ubisoft (Assassin's Creed) or Electronic Arts (FIFA). Very few companies of the Spanish label – the Andalusian Genera and the Madrid Mercury Steam are two examples – have more than 50 employees. Guirao alluded to this problem: "The small ones are good to start, the medium ones to resist in times of crisis, but the ones that generate stability and future are the big ones". The minister asked for an increase in the presence of women in the sector, which has a 16% of developers.

If last year, the yearbook marked the breakdown of the expansion of companies with the disappearance of 30, 2018 again offers a positive balance: five more have been created, up to a total of 455 active. The report explains that this obeys a natural and necessary process due to an excess of companies. And it compares the situation with that of other countries, such as France, the US or Canada, which generate four times more wealth per company than Spain.

By communities, the leadership of the video game continues unabated: Catalonia is the leading region, followed by Madrid. But movement is noticed in almost all the autonomies. Only Cantabria does not register active studies dedicated to the development of video games. There are interesting paradoxes: Andalusia, one of the most punished communities by unemployment, is the fourth creative power in Spain, almost doubling the Basque Country. Valencia keeps its third place, hunting for the two big ones. Galicia, Asturias, Castilla y León or Murcia register a notorious presence. In general, the fever to create videogames is represented as a national symptom.

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