After a two-year covid break, the international games fair Gamescom took place in Cologne on August 24-26, 2022. It is a festival of news in video games where experts, journalists and the public meet. At this year's fair, seven Czech game studios also successfully presented themselves among the world's giants.
The Czech Republic enabled the participation of Czech game developers through the national stand, which was created in cooperation with the Czech Game Developers Association, the Consulate General of the Czech Republic in Düsseldorf and the CzechInvest agency with the support of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Industry and Trade. The Czech stand was personally visited by the Consul General, Mrs. Kristina Larischová, who, among other things, also tried virtual reality. Representatives of the Association and the CzechInvest agency were also present at the stand and provided information about the Czech gaming industry and the possibilities of cooperation with the local market.
Seven exhibitors at the Czech stand represented both established companies and startups and budding studios. For example, the company Czech Games Edition has been successfully creating board games and games for mobile devices for several years, the company Plan A provides outsourcing services for the world's largest titles such as Battlefield or MS Flight Simulator. Newcomers include, for example, the company Gold Knights with the action RPG Lost Hero, Fiolasoft with the game Matcho, the Immersive division with the VR title Blockstar VR and the studio Cypronia, which is preparing a game for the Jan Žižka film of the same name directed by Petr Jákl. An exceptional company is GameDevHub, which launched the first gaming educational academy in the Czech Republic.
Czech video games have a good reputation in the world and their popularity grows every year. Therefore, it is understandable that the Czech national stand presented itself at Gamescom for the third time and enjoyed great interest from visitors who admire the originality and imagination of Czech creators. "It's great that Gamescom is returning after two online editions again in the form of a physical event, and Czech game studios can be there. This is one of the most important events for the game industry in the world, and the absence of Czech representation would be a big mistake," says Pavel Barák, chairman of the Czech Game Developers Association and a member of the National Innovation Platform Cultural and Creative Industries within the national RIS3 strategy.
"The video game industry is an important part of the cultural and creative industries and we at Czechinvest are excited that Czech creators shined at such a prestigious fair," said Markéta Mentelová, sector specialist for the cultural and creative industries of the Czechinvest agency and a member of the National Innovation Platform Cultural and Creative Industries within the national RIS3 strategy. But enthusiasm is not enough - Czechinvest has launched an extensive Technology Incubation program, in which cultural and creative industries are one of the supported areas. The importance of cultural and creative industries for transforming the economy and increasing its competitiveness is unquestionable, which is why this thematic area is also included in the National Research and Innovation Strategy for Smart Specialization as the domain Cultural and creative industries as an accelerator of development.