Gaming in the UK is about to be taken pretty seriously thanks to a brand new £1.2 million programme to promote games and games development in the UK’s capital city, London.

Games London, as it’s called, was unveiled today via an in-game press conference starring none-other than London’s floppy-haired Mayor, Boris Johnson. “An in-game press conference?” I hear you cry with confusion. Yes, a press conference held in Minecraft, of all games.

Games London is being delivered by Film London and games trade body, Ukie, with support of the video game tax relief fund which was fully granted in 2014.

But what exactly is it all about? What’s on offer with Games London? How exactly is London going to become the games capital of the world? A number of ways, actually.

Training and skills initiatives will be offered to developers, as well as an extra push on promoting London as the place for games companies to invest. Not only that, a new gaming event is heading to the capital: The London Games Festival.

The London Games Festival is a brand new event that’ll take place each April, starting this year from 1-10 April 2016. This event will be for both consumers and investors and will showcase and celebrate the industry’s huge cultural and economic impact. It’ll also offer business to business networking events, and much more.

It’ll work essentially as an umbrella for a number of gaming events which already take place in the capital such as EGX Rezzed and the BAFTA Game Awards, but will also be host to things such as Now Play This, a weekend of games at Somerset House, and much more.

In the in-game press conference, Johnson said:

“London is already a star player when it comes to games and interactive entertainment, but international competition is fierce and we need to ensure our city can compete with our global gaming rivals.

Through Games London we are supercharging an increasingly important sector for our economy, one that exemplifies the capital’s reputation for creativity and innovation. From design to banking and civil engineering to film, games technology is being used in a host of different sectors. We are investing in a dynamic and constantly evolving industry to take London to another level as a world-leading capital for games and interactive entertainment.”

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