After a welcoming address by Andrea Peters and Kai Bolik from the host GameDuell, who briefly presented the history of his company and the games scene in Berlin, Thorsten Unger took the floor. He briefly introduces the State Secretary and his biography and then passes the word on to Mr. Rickerts, who is initially optimistic about the games scene and the situation in the capital. There are currently 140 games companies and thus a very high density in Berlin. For the year 2019 he is very optimistic, which is partly due to the new funding programme of the Federal Government.

In addition to many small and innovative studios, there are more and more larger and firmly established studios in Berlin, as Thorsten Unger confirms. He would like to know from Mr. Rickerts where he sees Berlin in international comparisons. He still finds such a comparison difficult at the moment, according to the State Secretary, since the USA and Canada, for example, are still far ahead of us with regard to their gaming industry, which has to do, among other things, with the tax possibilities. These would have to be adapted here in order to approach the North Americans. However, we do have the framework conditions to continue to grow, and it is worth looking internationally.

Another actual topic in the games industry is VR, as the moderator notes, which definitely has the potential to become suitable for the masses. To achieve this, Berlin would need a strong development landscape to promote innovations in this and other areas. In general, there is a broad bouquet of things that are necessary for innovations, Rickerts replied. There is a lot of crossover in the capital and more and more large companies are looking for a way here. Berlin is still an attractive location and there is a desire for innovation, but the companies themselves must also play their part here. Politics and business must work together.

Thorsten Unger said that eSports is also a hotly debated trend in the games landscape, which also guarantees a lot of potential for Berlin. Christian Rickerts underlines this one hundred percent and hopes for many more chances and opportunities for the city.

Another view goes to Cologne, where a hub was created with the support of the city, the Cologne Game House, where developers can work and develop in one place. In the course of the discussion, it becomes clear that there is a great desire for a comparable model for Berlin, a GameHub. However, Rickerts makes it clear that the framework conditions must first be created and defined and that the wishes and expertise of the companies are needed. Networks are also of enormous importance for such a hub.

Finally, Unger would like to know from the State Secretary where he sees the games scene in Berlin in the year 2025. Rickerts hopes for a big eSports event in the Mercedes-Benz Arena and also wishes for big productions and the big thing. In his eyes, this is absolutely possible.

We would like to thank Mr. Rickerts for his time and his enthusiasm for discussion and GamesDuell for his hospitality. Many thanks also to Thorsten Unger for the moderation and of course to all guests for coming and for their suggestions.


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