Liverpool video game experts head to US

20-strong delegation of Liverpool city region video game developers, programmers and business leaders heads to San Francisco for global conference. Tony McDonough reports

Some members of the Liverpol delegation heading to the Game Developers Conference


Representatives of Liverpool city region’s thriving video game sector will head to California this week for a global conference.

Developers, programmers and business leaders will be among the 20-strong delegation flying to the US for the annual Game Developers Conference (GDC). It takes place in San Francisco from Monday, March 20, to Friday, March 24.

They will be joined by individuals from the inward investment team at Growth Platform, the city region’s economic development agency.

Liverpool has been a pioneering hub for the video games sector since the 1980s. Back then it was home to businesses such as Imagine Software and Psygnosis, which was acquired by Sony in 1993.

Today Merseyside is home to Sony Interactive Entertainment, which employs hundreds of people in Liverpool city centre, as well as a number of independent games developers. Up in Southport virtual reality games developer Fallen Planet

This week’s delegation includes vTime, Ripstone, Skyhook Games, Wushu Studios, d3t, Lucid Games, Keywords Studios, Avalanche Studios Group, Universally Speaking and Draw & Code.

David Harper, managing director of Skyhook, said: “Being able to attend GDC is a great opportunity for us to not only learn about the latest trends in the video games industry but is also amazing from a business development and networking perspective.

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“It is arguably the largest business focused gaming event in the world, with delegates from not only the UK and US, but from all over the globe.”

According to research from PWC, the global gaming industry is predicted to be worth $321bn by 2026. 

In 2020, Sweden’s Avalanche Studios – creators of the Just Cause franchise which has sold more than 15m copies worldwide – chose the city as the location for its second international studio after New York.

Helen Cross, creative and digital sector lead at Growth Platform, said: “Today Liverpool city region is rightly gaining recognition as one of the most significant clusters of games development and immersive technology expertise in the UK.

“For our businesses, GDC is a major opportunity to connect, market products and ultimately sign deals.

“For us, it’s a platform for demonstrating the amazing breadth of expertise, talent, creativity and growth support that makes Liverpool city region an ideal base for businesses expanding internationally.”

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