Stage 2 of the federal games funding program launched - large-volume funding rolls out!


The German games industry has waited a long time for this, now the wait is over. After the “large” games funding program was notified by the EU Commission in spring - we reported - the Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure has now published the call for funding, the funding directive and a timetable.

Now a total of up to EUR 250,000,000 is available for the funding of prototype development and the production of games (“project”). For each project, up to 50% of the eligible costs can be granted as non-repayable grants. The respective amount of the grant varies with the amount of the estimated development costs. In the course of prototype funding, projects with development costs between EUR 30,000 and EUR 400,000 will be funded with a maximum of 50% of the development costs. Different amounts apply for production funding: Projects with development costs between EUR 100,000 and EUR 2,000,000 will be funded with 50%. Above this amount, the funding rate decreases degressively to 25% for projects with development costs above EUR 8,000,000. Projects with development costs exceeding EUR 40,000,000 will be subject to a separate evaluation.

What are the requirements for games funding?

Of course, the funding is subject to a number of conditions. In the case of funding for prototypes, an own contribution of at least 20% of the eligible costs must be provided. For production funding, the own contribution depends on the size of the company and ranges between 30% and 50%. The application for funding can only be submitted by the company responsible for the development and which has headquarters or a branch in Germany (“regional focus”). The regional focus must be maintained for the entire duration of the project. The project may not be commenced at the time the application is submitted; costs already incurred will not be taken into account.

In addition, a comprehensive cultural test must be passed before the project is eligible for funding. Thus, on the one hand, there must be a certain content reference to the German cultural heritage and, on the other, the development/productions must also have a territorial reference to Germany. Finally, the game itself must be "innovative" in a design, creative or technological sense.

It is also necessary to have a reference development. If it is a debut project, funding eligibility will be examined separately. The financing of the project must be secured and proven. The use of funds must also be accounted to the Federal Ministry. Within the framework of the conditions of the funding directive and thus in particular subject to the respective own contribution, the combination of federal funding with other funding programs is possible.

The call for funding provides an overview of the eligible costs. The funding directive can be found here. Applications can be submitted starting 28 September 2020. Projects can commence on 01 December 2020 at the earliest.

All this is good news for Germany as a location for games development and hopefully it will open the door to many internationally successful games. We stay on top and will continue to inform. If you have any questions, we will be happy to provide you with advice and practical support.