The Associated Press has reported that European Union regulators have given the go-ahead to a proposed tax break for game developers in France. Developers can enjoy the tax break for any game that has any cultural content. The tax break can be seen as an incentive for developers to create games rich in culture. This could also mean that we get to see some very interesting games.
Earlier the EU regulators weren’t in line with the tax break initially propounded by the French, as it was too broad and covered game genres without any room for cultural content. But they are satisfied with the revisions that the French made to the proposed tax breaks. Neelie Kroes, EU competition commissioner, told the AP that the French made significant changes to target cultural content.
The French officials have a very romantic perception of video games and view them as an artform – perhaps a view that many French developers will also share now. The tax break will allow game developers a rebate of up to 20% on production costs and also covers the sub-contracting costs.
It is an intelligent way of motivating developers to make games with a cultural leaning. It would be even better if developers enjoyed similar incentives on other games, as European developers are feeling the heat from countries like China and India.