Studio closings, big layoffs, an industry in turmoil – those are headlines that have all too frequently described the video game business in general, and in Canada specifically.
But the doom and gloom doesn’t paint an accurate picture of what’s actually going on, according to the Entertainment Software Association of Canada. There are now 16,500 people working full time at 329 studios, up five per cent since 2011, according to a new study from the industry advocacy group.
The employee count is enough to maintain Canada’s industry as the third-largest in the world, after the United States and Japan.
“The press often reports on the studio closures, but they don’t often know about the hires in a lot of cases because the studios are always doing those,” says ESAC president and chief executive Jayson Hilchie. “We’re still growing and that’s a good news story.”