Virtual Landing Pad helps Australian games developers play in China

16 Jul 2020

Australian games developers wanting to compete in China’s fast-growing digital games sector are sharpening their skills, thanks to Austrade’s virtual boot camps.  

From 20–26 May, Austrade’s Shanghai team delivered its first ‘Online Bootcamp for Games Developers.’ The five-day virtual Landing Pad program included market briefings from industry players and the opportunity to pitch ideas to industry representatives.  

Even before the home-lockdowns began, the Chinese games industry was growing fast.

According to digital games research company, newzoo, China’s games market is already worth US$40.8 billion.

The five-day boot camp kicked off with a workshop on intellectual property and brand protection. Market research company, Niko Partners, charted the growth of the world’s biggest gaming market and explained some of the regulatory barriers to entry.

Niko Partners’ brief included a deep dive into the current market dynamics of China’s games industry.

Representatives from Tencent Games, one of the world’s largest games companies, also made a virtual appearance – sharing ideas on how to enter the market.

Next up was the Interactive Games and Entertainment Association (IGEA), the peak industry body for video games companies in Australia and New Zealand. IGEA representative Jens Schroeder, Director, Industry & Member Relations and Raelene Knowles, COO, shared observations on how the gaming industry is growing and where opportunities are likely to emerge.  

Day Three delivered ‘how to pitch in China’ insights. Sessions focussed on the market and what makes for an effective pitch in China’s games sector. They were delivered by Josh Burns, Founder of DigitalDevConnect and a globally-recognised industry expert in exporting digital games into China.

The rest of the week was an opportunity to engage directly with industry. Companies prepared for pitches to some of the leading players in the market, including Tencent Games, TapTap, Kowloon Nights and China Telecom’s Dazzle Interactive.

Block42’s Chief Executive Officer, Charlene Hu, reckons the event will help her 3-D design and animation company spot opportunities in the Chinese market.

‘We learnt from many experts, built a better understanding of the Chinese multimedia industry and connected with some of the most impactful China media companies,’ she said.

Games-development platform, mod.io, was also a participant. The company’s technology helps developers to manage the storage and distribution of mods – or alterations in the look or behaviour of part of a game.

‘Thanks for running the program: it was very insightful and a fantastic opportunity for us growing Australian gaming companies,’ said Scott Reismanis, Co-founder, Mod.io

Austrade’s Landing Pad in Shanghai helps Australian scale-ups to access the China market. 

To understand what the Landing Pad offers, please visit Austrade’s website. The Landing Pad team will organise the next tech boot camp from 20 July to 24 July. It will focus on innovative health technology.

For more information on the digital gaming market in China, please contact kristian.raston@austrade.gov.au