The UK is a formidable competitor in the gaming industry. In fact, the industry is estimated to be worth £3.86bn, which means it’s worth more than both video and music combined. These figures place it 5th behind China, the US, Japan, and Germany. So the question that then comes to the fore, is how has the UK managed to aggressively develop its gaming sector? The simple answer is that the UK has always punched above its weight in light of the visual, audio, and digital medium. They’ve led the way in film, video, and music, and in many ways, gaming is part of the same medium. Thus, for the longest time, the UK has nurtured the type of climate ideal for the incubation of gaming companies and gaming startups alike. It’s become a bastion of technology serving as a home to some of the best game startups around. Below are some of the leading game startups that have come into existence in the last few years.
Founded in 2019, Electric Box managed to achieve funding in the facility of USD 25 million, which might explain their rapid success. But let’s be frank, a UK gaming startup doesn’t attract that type of capital if investors don’t have absolute confidence in your product. Electric Gamebox operates individual virtual reality game-theme parks, in other words, a whole different experience offered outside of what systems for home VR gaming can provide. It’s important to note that the term ‘theme park’ is not implied in the traditional manner. Instead, what it means is that the company makes interactive digital rooms that use touch screens, projection mapping, motion tracking, and surround sound to immerse players in hyper-real worlds.
Bossa Studio’s inception goes all the way back to 2010 and investment funding to the tune of USD 41 million – how’s that for some serious cash injection. The company operates as a cross-platform video game development company, meaning it’s not confined to one platform or one console. In the past, Bossa has released popular titles such as Surgeon Simulator, a surgical themed game for consoles, PC’s and mobile devices, as well as Monstermind, a browser-based real-time strategy game. Bossa Studio’s collection of titles can be found in its own online store, PlayStation Store and Steam.
An independent mobile gaming development company, Tripledot was founded in 2017 and funded to the tune of USD 89 million. Once again, it’s not hard to see why such a gaming startup might find great success. The company’s specialty lies in card games with titles such as Solitaire A Class Card Game, which it has availed for both Android and iOS devices. The company derives its revenue through in-app purchases and advertisements.
Improbable is an interesting one. The company caters to both the video game sector as well as the corporate sector by providing simulation software. By branching into both sectors, the company has truly flourished. Improbable is most renowned for having developed SpatialOS, a cloud-based platform for computing that enables games developers to build, run and operate online games. It also provides a cross-pollination feature by enabling developers to write code through the use of any simulation software and to then distribute their code across multiple platforms. Improbable has delved into various sectors, including finance, health, energy, city efficiency, and defense.
These gaming startups have proven their mettle again and again, to the point that it’s shocking that neither up to this point have managed to become one of the big tech companies on FTSE100 listings on the London Stock Exchange. Maybe it’s simply a matter of time before they become staples such as IBM, which holds the record for the oldest tech company on the FTSE 100 market index. At this point, only time, innovation, and ingenuity will tell.