Number of games receiving Video Games Tax Relief at record high

The number of games that have received final certification for Video Games Tax Relief has soared in the past year, figures released by the BFI today show

In the year October 2015 - September 2016, 167 games received final certification for VGTR, an extraordinary 117 per cent increase on the same period the previous year. The total UK/EEA spend of these projects was £253.1m, which is 686 per cent higher than the previous year. 

The budget for the games that have received final certification was £350.2m, which is up 933 per cent.

In this same period, 170 games also received interim certification, meaning that the games are still in production. These games had a total UK/EEA spend of £436.7m. The budget for interim certification games is £506.2m.

There is also indication that the number of applications is increasing with rapid speed. In Q1 - Q3 of 2016 alone, 128 games received final certification, which is nearly as many as the 152 games that received final certification in the two-year period April 2014 - May 2016.

Dr Jo Twist OBE, CEO of Ukie, responded to the stats, saying, “These stats clearly show what a huge boost the Video Games Tax Relief is to the UK games sector. The incredible year-on-year increase in certifications proves that the support has become a critical driver for growth in the industry, and we are pleased to see the variety of budgets from big to small benefiting. This is a clear signal to government that the continuation of the VGTR in a post-referendum world is critical to our sector in order to remain competitive globally.”

VGTR came into effect in 2014 following successful lobbying by Ukie, and offers games companies 20 per cent return of their development costs for games that pass the 'Cultural Test'. Guidance can be found on VGTR in our Need to Know Guide here.