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£11.5m project to drive innovation in Dundee’s games sector

InGAME project director Sean Taylor.
InGAME project director Sean Taylor.

A multi-million-pound project to drive innovation in the video games sector in Dundee has started assisting local firms looking to scale their projects.

InGAME is a £11.5 million research and development centre to establish Dundee as a world leader in games research and grow the value and scale of the city’s games sector.

Companies pitch projects for the InGAME team to work on, with the results of the research being 100% owned by the company.

The project, which runs until 2023, is led by Abertay University, in partnership with the Dundee University and St Andrews University.

It is also backed by local industry stakeholders such as 4J Studios, Outplay Entertainment and Beano Studios as well as international partners like Microsoft and Sony.

Project director Sean Taylor said: “InGAME has the aim of adding scale and value to the video games industry in Dundee.

“Establishing original IP is risky and as a result it can often prove fatal – it’s so intense and resource demanding.

“We want to help de-risk experimentation, help to encourage games development and to invest and drive innovation.”

InGAME received £5.25m from the Arts and Humanities Research Council with additional investment of £500,000 from the Scottish Funding Council.

This is matched by in-kind support by industry, sector and academic investment of R&D expertise, facilities and resource.

Mr Taylor said that since the project was formed in October 2018, a lot of work had gone on behind the scenes.

This included building a team of 12 full-time staff including a multi-cultural team of eight post-doctoral research students based at Dundee’s Vision building.

The team is supported by 18 leading academics from the three participating universities which provide oversight, guidance and expertise.

The Vision building offices are temporarily shut but the team has continued to work remotely throughout the Covid-19 pandemic.

Mr Taylor said: “We can offer companies access to world-class academic expertise, a full-time research team.

“The companies keep 100% ownership of their ideas and IP. We want them to create a sustainable, repeatable business model and create products they can sell.”

In January this year the first successful applications were awarded with seven projects selected by InGAME.

The projects range from a resource to identify a disaster victim from dental data, to an interactive comic to promote sustainable living to helping develop an audio tool to gathering material for an original IP game set in the past.

Mr Taylor said: “We had a fantastic response to the first round of funding with very exciting projects coming forward. With the further rounds of support, will be able to offer more organisations the chance to utilise the talent, technology and knowledge available through InGAME.”

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