Is the video game industry the industry of the future?
Today, video game creation enjoys much higher budgets than those of the film industry worldwide. It is therefore an economic sector that generates enormous profits and on which more and more creative Belgians are focusing.
The authorities are endeavouring to structure the gaming environment in Wallonia, relying on a pool of young talent trained in universities and other centres of competence such as TechnocITé and Technifutur. One example is in Mons, where the GameMax label was launched to promote serious gaming, "a mix of activities that brings together teaching, information, communications, marketing and training, with links and sometimes legal resources." A Wallonia Game Association has also been created to support the development of the current studios.
And while substantial financial resources are required, the government is counting primarily on the leverage effect provided by the tax shelter mechanism, i.e. an incentive enabling a Belgian company to invest in this sector and receive a tax reduction in exchange.
Private stakeholders are not hesitating to invest significant resources, as shown by the company Wild Bishop, which recently set up at the Pôle Image in Liège. It is now emerging as the leading Walloon video game incubator, launching calls for projects on a recurring basis.