Paris Game Week (PGW), the largest French event for video game lovers, returned to France from November 2-6, 2022. The last session took place back in 2019, before the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, and welcomed 317,000 visitors who came to meet 194 exhibitors and 227 brands.
For the 2022 edition, the world’s largest video game distributors and companies, such as French giants Ubisoft and Fnac, were present. A stand was also reserved for games made in France, including Danghost (Umeshu Lovers), Sandwalkers (Goblinz Studio) and To hell with the ugly (ARTE France and la Poule Noire), amongst many others. In addition, the event was coupled with the two League of Legends French Cup semi-finals.
Five French ministers attended the PGW Restart to support this innovative industry producing the French’s favorite leisure activity. Jean-Noël Barrot, the Minister Delegate for Digital Transition and Telecommunications, even described this industry as a “national pride that the French government wishes to strengthen”.
According to the Syndicat des Éditeurs de Logiciels de Loisirs (SELL), 37.4 million French people are fans of video games. It is a market that appeals to both young (96% of 10–14-year-olds, 94% of 15–17-year-olds) and old (92% of 18–24-year-olds, 82% of 25–34-year-olds, 75% of 35–49-year-olds, 63% of 50–64-year-olds and 41% are over 65 years of age). Amongst those that play at least once a week, 53% are men and 47% are women, with the average age being 38.
In 2021, France was home to 1,200 video game companies that employed 5,000 professionals. Sales in this sector reached €5.6 billion, up 1.6% compared with 2020 and up 13.5% on 2019. Moreover, several government programs have emerged to further develop the sector: the video game tax credit, extended until 2028, and the Video Game Assistance Fund (FAJV). In October 2022, the Horizon Jeu Vidéo association launched a free training course for young adults between the ages of 18 and 25, with no diploma, aiming to become video game testers.
In 2006, video games became known as the tenth art in French culture. This status was further confirmed through the creation of the Culture Pass, a cultural fund for teenagers between the ages of 14 and 18, which can be used to buy French video games online. The Ministry of Culture also started producing its video games in 2018 like Romanica: a game that teaches its players the importance of language diversity.
For further information on French video games, please visit this link.