TIGA: Canada a "Major Threat" to UK Games Industry

John Funk

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Dec 20, 2005
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TIGA: Canada a "Major Threat" to UK Games Industry



The chief executive of UK developer organization TIGA thinks that Canada is a major threat to game development in his home country.

Last month, hopes of UK-based game developers for an industry tax break placed fake Canadian passports on the seats [http://www.escapistmagazine.com/news/view/101650-Report-UK-Developer-Tax-Cut-Sabotaged-by-Major-Publisher] at the recent Game Horizon conference in Newcastle, leading at least one UK-based developer to call the Canadians "vultures."

Yesterday, on the BBC One's Politics Show, TIGA boss Richard Wilson echoed the sentiments. While pointing out just how important the videogame industry was to the UK - "[it] contributes £1 billion to UK GDP, it generates £415m in tax receipts for the treasury, it employs 30,000 people - many of them in very highly skilled jobs" - Wilson expressed frustration that the Canadians had what he thought was an unfair advantage.

The UK was "competing on a very uneven playing field," said Wilson, arguing that that "the Canadians are a major threat to our industry."

However, Entertainment Software Association of Canada executive director Danielle Parr fired back [http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/canadian-esa-alls-fair-in-love-and-war], saying that "all's fair in love and war." And games, as we all know very well, are war.

"A lot of people are looking at Canada and saying how are they doing this, they're taking all our jobs, how are they attracting our investment and we're not able to keep them here," said Parr. "We're just simply trying to promote the videogame industry in general, promote what Canada has to offer. And we'll take the best and the brightest, we'll take your investment."

Parr does have a point in that the Canadians aren't doing anything illegal. If you have to point fingers, shouldn't they be at the UK government for refusing to offer the necessary deals? Either way, it's certain that whatever happens, we haven't yet seen the last of this UK/Canada industry spat.

Also, this may in fact be the first time that Canada has ever been credibly called a "major threat" to anything. Just kidding, Canadians. I love you guys as long as you still have Tim Horton's.

(GamerZines [http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/canadian-esa-alls-fair-in-love-and-war])

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VulakAerr

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Mar 31, 2010
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Blame Canada?

Honestly, any country that hosts Bioware is fine in my books. They can have our games industry (except Bizarre and Lionhead. Thanks.)
 

Sevre

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Apr 6, 2009
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The solution? Make better games. You can't expect to maintain an industry on complaints.
 

Matt_LRR

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Nov 30, 2009
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Wait - they have an uneven playing field that puts them at a disadvantage, and it's Canada's fault?



Maybe if their games industry is so goddamned important, they should strive to make the industry climate there better, rather than expecting us to somehow make ours worse...?

-m
 

Loonerinoes

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I swear that South Park theme will keep looping through my head every time I come across these stories. It's funny the first time, but it becomes an addiction very quickly!
 

Stormz

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Jul 4, 2009
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One Canadian organization places fake passports on the seats

EVERY SINGLE CANADIAN IS A VULTURE BECAUSE OF THIS!!
 

Shale_Dirk

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Mar 23, 2010
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"Hey Canada! We don't like that you're doing things better than we are!"
"Hey UK. Maybe if you stopped doing things poorly, you wouldn't have anything to complain about"
"HOW DARE YOU"

This is getting a little pathetic on a national level.
 

vrbtny

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Sep 16, 2009
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Is there like a secret subliminal message in this about piracy or something?

Not that I'm stating all piracy in canada's fault, but don't they have some weak internet rules on digital rights...... or something like that.

I'm not hitting Canada, I really love the place. All that amazing, but freezing scenery...
 

Mrsoupcup

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Jan 13, 2009
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Well we have Bioware, Ubisoft, and EA is starting to set up shop here too. So boohoo I suppose? Cry me a river? Make better games? Oh Canada? =P (Damn, the Uk has been complaining about Canada alot recently...)
 

John Funk

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Dec 20, 2005
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Wait, let me get this straight. The UK cut tax breaks for game devs. Canada has breaks like that. Canada is promoting moving to Canada for the breaks. The UK devs are pissed at Canada. It's all logical until the end there. They should be pissed at the UK and they should have responded with "Fine, if the UK doesn't want us, we'll shoot a huge hole in it's economy and go to Canada to punish them" That's logic. What they ARE doing is nuts.
 

Enigmers

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Dec 14, 2008
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As a Canadian it just makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside that anyone is considering us a "threat."

As a Canadian I'd love for more video game companies to set up shop here so we can collectively terrorize the rest of the video game industry, because apparently Canada is already doing a great job of that. Just listen to poor, poor TIGA!
 

Jack and Calumon

Digimon are cool.
Dec 29, 2008
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Sevre90210 said:
The solution? Make better games. You can't expect to maintain an industry on complaints.
The UK made Arkham Asylum. It won Yahtzee's Game of the Year. What more do you want? You want more? We made Timesplitters? Still not satisfied? LittleBIGplanet! Need for Speed: Shift! Motorstorm 1, 2 and soon 3 and let's not forget Fable!

Calumon: Can we really brag about that last one?

Jack: As a British lad, I would like to say Canada, I still wish to remain friends. *offers Hug*
 

sunburst

Media Snob
Mar 19, 2010
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Matt_LRR said:
Wait - they have an uneven playing field that puts them at a disadvantage, and it's Canada's fault?


Maybe if their games industry is so goddamned important, they should strive to make the industry climate there better, rather than expecting us to somehow make ours worse...?

-m
Oh you know you guys are going to apologize in the end. Just go ahead and get it over with.
 

Mrsoupcup

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Jan 13, 2009
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Jack and Calumon said:
The UK made Arkham Asylum. It won Yahtzee's Game of the Year. What more do you want? You want more? We made Timesplitters? Still not satisfied? LittleBIGplanet! Need for Speed: Shift! Motorstorm 1, 2 and soon 3 and let's not forget Fable!

Calumon: Can we really brag about that last one?

Jack: As a British lad, I would like to say Canada, I still wish to remain friends. *offers Hug*
And we shall accept. Ehh *Hug*
 

Simalacrum

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Apr 17, 2008
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While in the end, yes, technically speaking we should actually be blaming our government (the UK one) for all this shinanigans for not offering the tax break to the gaming industry in Britain, I feel it necessary to point out that the UK government is scrapping pretty much anything that'll mean spending more money or gaining less money - across the board, almost every sector is receiving cuts of up to 25% to try and keep our national dept at a sustainable level.

Point is, if the gaming industry in Britain did receive a tax break, then the government would in turn be receiving lots of complaints from everyone else about how the gaming industry is being treated better than everyone else.

Yes, the UK industry is being hurt for this, and yes, we shouldn't blame Canada for this, but then pretty much every industry in Britain is being hurt right now, and the video games simply are no longer a priority for the government - health care, education, etc, is a priority, and, sadly, they're cutting on those too.

Basically Canada = scapegoat cause we have nobody else to blame :p
 

Matt_LRR

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Nov 30, 2009
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sunburst313 said:
Matt_LRR said:
Wait - they have an uneven playing field that puts them at a disadvantage, and it's Canada's fault?


Maybe if their games industry is so goddamned important, they should strive to make the industry climate there better, rather than expecting us to somehow make ours worse...?

-m
Oh you know you guys are going to apologize in the end. Just go ahead and get it over with.
... it's funny because it's true. :(

-m
 

trickfred

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Mar 22, 2010
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W00t, we're a threat to someone! :D

Take that, all those people that say we're too polite!

(But please don't take it personally though, and sorry if you do!)
 

Baby Tea

Just Ask Frankie
Sep 18, 2008
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Matt_LRR said:
Maybe if their games industry is so goddamned important, they should strive to make the industry climate there better, rather than expecting us to somehow make ours worse...?

-m
Well said!
Canada sees the potential in the industry, and offers incentives to bring the business to its shores, and the government of another country who isn't offering those incentives gets pissed?
"Hey! They are supposed to stay here where we don't do anything for them! Not go where they'll get stuff!"
Yeah, that makes sense.