As readers of GamesIndustry.biz you'll hopefully be aware that, as well as striving for journalistic excellence and informative content, we have a vested interest in the health and well-being of the country's domestic industry.
As part of that industry you'll also no doubt have experienced, either directly or vicariously, some of the regrettable ramifications of the difficult and changeable environment we have found ourselves operating within over recent months.
Times have been tough, and to survive needs agility and knowledge. Today, TIGA released figures which give some insight into just how mercurial our field has become. In just three years, between 2008 and 2011, 197 studios and development outfits have closed in the UK alone.
It's not all bad news though - in that period 216 new games industry offices opened their doors, heartening evidence that we are adapting to and evolving within the vicissitudes which have presented themselves.
But judging the wax and wane of trends and movements is no easy task. To invest and act intelligently you need information: knowledge of your peers and your markets. To paraphrase Eric Hirshberg, by sharing that information we can help to grow the pie, and not just try and take a bigger slice of it for ourselves.
So, to that end, we're conducting a survey. A survey which we hope will accurately map the state of the UK industry, it's growths and weaknesses. Once we have collated enough results we will subject it to the rigorous analysis of our team and our consultants, to provide you with the ammunition you need to continue the fight to keep the UK in contention with the rest of the world's major industry players.
We'd love you to take part. To do so, you need to be a UK-based, independently or UK-owned developer. Answers are designed to be taken on a by-company basis rather than individual, so please do try and ensure that we don't get duplicate answers. Entries are limited to one per IP, but if you could try and help us to avoid repetition, we'd greatly appreciate it.
More details are explained in the cover letter below, which was sent to some our closest industry contacts last week. Already, the responses have been flowing in, with some fascinating results, but to make this as representative as possible we need all of you to take part.
It will only take 10 minutes and, as explained below, all answers are entirely anonymous. Nothing will be published which could link your answers to your company. Lists of the companies who took part will not be published, either. Raw data will be available on request.
We're in this together. Many of you are competitors, but many of you are also friends, and the two are certainly not mutually exclusive. If you do want to help, click on the link below to be taken to the first page of the survey. As always, your time is very much appreciated.
Original cover letter and invitation. Please feel free to distribute as you see fit.
Hello, and welcome to the inaugural GamesIndustry.biz UK indie survey - thank you for taking the time to read.
If you've received this then you'll likely know one of the GI.biz team already, or will have been encouraged to take part by one of the generous industry ambassadors who have kindly offered to help us spread the word. However, as always when being asked to disclose information about your company, I'm sure you'll have your reservations. Hopefully, we'll be able to assuage those doubts.
Firstly, all information provided is completely anonymous, unless you specifically request otherwise. We're not interested in using it for any commercial purpose other than to analyse it and produce work which will provide invaluable industry insight into the current state of the UK development scene and its direction - information which we hope will prove useful to those already part of, or looking to join, our country's innovative and progressive community.
If you don't want to answer a question, just skip it. Although we'd obviously rather receive completed questionnaires, we'd rather you felt you could miss individual answers than not fill it in at all.
This is something we hope to be conducting annually, and with your help build a picture of the trends and success areas of the country's industry. By contributing, you will be the helping the community to have a better understanding of where it stands and where it's headed.
At the end of the form, there's the option to attach a word file containing any further comments, suggestions or opinions, either anonymously or attributed. Anything we receive in this way may be used to accompany the analysis pieces which we'll be producing, so please do make clear whether you're happy for us to do so in the text.
Once again, thank you for taking the time to get involved. The global industry is changing, perhaps more rapidly than any of us were able to predict. Let's make sure we maintain the UK as the influential and groundbreaking market leader it has been for so long.
If you do know anybody who you think might be interested in taking part, please do pass along the link below.
Your time is greatly appreciated, many thanks.