NRW - Land of Computer Games
"Do you know the land where the lemon trees blossom?" German poet Johann Wolfgang von Goethe asked in the late 18th century. For most of his German readers growing lemon trees then was as exotic as the making of computer games seems today. While Germans spend 1.8 billion Euro on games every year, only 5% of this money is spent on games Made in Germany.
An interesting article in the weekly "Welt am Sonntag" titled "Im Land der Computerspiele" ("In the Land of Computer Games") now describes how the government of Northrine-Westphalia wants to change that: "The state government will foster and expand NRW as a location for the games industry", says state secretary Marc Jan Eumann. "We consider this, still young, industry one of the key building blocks for the future of this state."
The economic success, however, depends on more and better funded academic offerings. "Only with adequate support", says Prof. Jörg Müller-Lietzkow of the University of Paderborn, "can Germany change from a developing country to a country of developers."
At the Cologne Game Lab we are looking forward to the new initiatives of the state government hoping only for the best ...
GUNDOLF S. FREYERMUTH
Gundolf S. Freyermuth is a founding director of the Cologne Game Lab and Professor of Comparative Media Studies at the ifs international film school, Cologne. His teaching and research concentrates on digital audiovisuality, cross- and transmediality, network culture and games.