We don’t often get political here at GameCloud and when I say “we,” I really just mean me on the odd occasion and some vague, crazy rantings from Nick in his clearer moments. But since I’ve written about some of the more recent questionable decisions the government has made about gaming, I felt it only fair to write and share about when they’re doing something good. It’s several months late but better late than never, right? The Senate Standing Committees on Environment and Communications are currently accepting (and have been since April) public submissions on the future of the Australian Videogame Development Industry. The deadline for those submissions is also the 18th of September, which is less than three days away now, and I know that’s not a lot of time. Hear me out on why you should find some time, however, to make a submission if you feel strongly about the gaming industry in Australia.
Because, really, it should be a sort of default thing if you’re into gaming at all?
For starters, look at our Wikipedia page about Australian gaming. The “Censorship” section dwarfs that of the “History” section and the most notable achievement on there is L.A. Noire. Triple-A just isn’t something that gets associated with our country, we haven’t got the kind of industry that allows for games like L.A. Noire to be a regular occurrence. Our resistance to the industry in this country is more notable than our accomplishments, apparently, which sucks because you know what should be on there? Stuff like The Arcade, a shared, cheap, not-for-profit workspace in Melbourne that supports indie devs by providing resources and somewhere to work. Or Perth’s own SK Games who, as an Australia first (possibly even a world first?), took their games on a literal arcade tour across the country. These are the kind of projects we should consider achievements, and what this Inquiry could help with, with enough public input on the issue.
What does this have to do with you, the average gamer, who may not even be interested in a career in game development? Well, it means that you can assist those who are interested, by fostering the kind of community that would support them in their endeavors. It would be nice if indie developers didn’t have to crank out a Gone Home just to get their foot in the door. More local developers also means more games, and local games with a local flavor and feel no less. A chance for Australian themes, culture, history, creativity, art, and everything else to be exploited in the same way America has theirs! Red Dead Redemption but with Ned Kelly – that could be a thing one day, who knows? With the current state of the Australian Videogame industry though it won’t happen, and if it did then it would probably be handled by Rockstar or someone who’d just cock it up. Do you really want Ned Kelly in the hands of Americans?
YEEHAW, MATES! I’M GONNA SHRIMP YOUR BARBIE MOTHERF***ERS!
So by now I should have whipped you into a frenzy of righteous outrage, and you’ll want to tell someone about it – if that’s the case then here’s what you can do. Go to the Terms of Reference page to read over the questions being asked as a part of the Inquiry. Then, go to the How To Make A Submission page for the requirements of a submission. You don’t have to be submitting on behalf of a development studio, and there’s no formal language required or specific format used. Hell, you can even rant like a mad man like I have here, so long as it’s relevant to the questions being asked in the Inquiry. However, if you care about the future of the Australian games development industry. If you care about helping the most creative minds in the Australian gaming community. If you care about wanting to see Ned Kelly shotgunning VB’s before shotgunning colonials in the face and riding off into the sunset on a UDL skinned horse (for $2.99), then by God people! Make a submission!