Londonderry could become a key hub for the global gaming sector.
That’s the opinion of the founders behind Kippie, an all-female gaming studio based in the city which said it is training the next generation of developers.
The firm’s manager Katherine Rowlandson said there is an “explosion of creativity” across the Northern Ireland gaming industry, particularly in the north west.
“I believe Derry in particular could rival Dundee as a world game development mecca, we just need to convince our talented young people to stay at home,” she said. “We can do this by supporting young people to try gaming as a career through programmes such as ScreenWorks and our workshops of Girls Make Games.”
ScreenWorks is a partnership between Northern Ireland Screen and Into Film which gives young people who want to pursue a career in the industry the chance to gain free hands-on experience with some of the leading experts working across film, TV, animation and games. At a ScreenWorks workshop for 14-19 year olds, the team from Kippie CIC introduced the young people to video game design with the aim of giving them real life experience.
“To be a successful games company, you don’t need great road infrastructure or public transportation,” Katherine said. “What you need it a good internet connection and to foster new talent so that they stay.”
She pointed to Hypixel Studios, the games company which was acquired by the world-leading publisher Riot Games, and which has set up an office in Derry, the home of the company founders.
Kippie is a partnership between Katherine, her sister Caroline Anderson who is a programmer and her wife artist Justine Scoltock.