Games Ireland has opened a new game-specific incubator GameSpace based with Pulse College/Windmill Lane Recording Studios in the IFSC in Dublin. The incubator has been established with the support of the local video games industry and Enterprise Ireland.
The first-of-its-kind incubator in Ireland was announced at the annual Games Ireland Gathering (GIG 2013) at the Aviva Stadium in association with Microsoft: Gaming Re-Imagined, with more than 500 people in attendance.
In order to encourage the growth of the thriving game start-up industry in Ireland, Games Ireland, whose members include Digit Studios, Riot Games, Havok, Microsoft, EA, Activision, Demonware and Big Fish Games, has established GameSpace to provide a central development and meeting hub for exciting, young game companies.
The space will provide hotdesks for up to 30 companies, as well as individual offices for anchor game companies, including the first start-up tenants of the incubator Powoww Studios, Six Minute, bitSmith Games and Batcat Games (the last two of whom are co-located with Digit.)
Further co-located incubators with Games Ireland member companies will be established until a larger premises for all anchor start-up companies is available.
Meeting of the minds
At present there are many start-up companies in Ireland with tremendous talent in coding, development and animation that need a central hub for industry mentorship and to share knowledge with like-minded companies.
GameSpace also provides an area for prospective publishers, partners and investors to meet with the most promising game companies. GameSpace aims to create greater synergy between start-up companies and further momentum for the burgeoning games development industry in Ireland which has been scattered in locations throughout the country until now.
The establishment of GameSpace is part of a wider framework envisaged by Games Ireland that will also encompass an accelerator programme, GamePad, which will seek to fast track younger game companies for graduation to GameSpace. Games Ireland will look to attain greater support for this wider infrastructure and a larger home for GameSpace participants in the coming months.
The global trend towards multi-platform, online, browser and mobile device-based gaming platforms has opened up a market of upwards a billion potential customers worldwide. Games Ireland hopes to encourage talented Irish start-up game companies to take advantage of this trend and enable them to become commercially successful enterprises.
“The establishment of the pilot incubator GameSpace is an essential step in the development of the indigenous games industry and is key to Games Ireland’s No 1 goal – growing the Irish game sector at all its levels,” said David Sweeney, Games Ireland’s CEO.