Nigerian government is set to reshape the video game animation industry, marking a momentous step forward. Progress towards this change is ongoing as Hannatu Musawa, the Minister of Arts, Culture and Creative Economy, recently unveiled plans to completely transform the industry. This was made known during the third quarter edition of the Xbox Developer Hangout, a Microsoft-organised event held in Lagos. Nigerian movies, music, fashion, and culture will seamlessly intertwine with every locally created video game, ensuring a captivating experience that showcases the essence of Nigeria, as stated by her.
According to Musawa, significant employment opportunities lie within the industry for youths. Explaining further, she mentioned that a comprehensive plan was already in place to actualize the vision, although Microsoft’s contribution is essential. The main focus is exploring the potential for innovation in gaming leveraging the immense talent present in the sector. I have aspirations for a complete makeover of the gaming area, and firmly believe that by joining forces and working together, we can accomplish remarkable things, she added.
Nigerians have potential to revolutionize the gaming industry.
She expressed her unwavering commitment to providing her support in any way possible to make this vision a reality. Additionally, she commended President Bola Tinubu for establishing the Ministry of Arts, Culture, and Creative Economy. Musawa firmly believes that Nigerians, being exceptionally creative minds, have the potential to revolutionize the gaming industry, which is valued at billions of dollars, with the necessary aid and backing from the government. The aim, she said, is for our domestically created video games to incorporate elements of our culture, such as our unique fashion sense, movies, music, and other cultural aspects.
Olatomiwa Williams, the Country Manager of Microsoft, noted that Microsoft is dedicated to equipping individuals with the necessary resources to thrive in the field. Williams said it is very important to capitalize on every available opportunity to fulfil President Bola Tinubu’s goal of promoting economic diversification. Collaborating with the Federal Government is a great pleasure to our company, as we firmly believe that Nigerian youths deserve the opportunity to flourish. Furthermore, our dedication towards building an inclusive industry extends to creating an environment that empowers women to grow as well.
Increased collaborations and awareness is imperative.
For over 20 years, Microsoft has thrived and flourished, benefiting immensely from the invaluable contributions of Nigerians to our diverse solution domains, Williams added. Furthermore, Oluseye Soyode-Johnson, founder of NuConti, emphasized that the video game sector surpasses the size of both Nollywood and the global music industry. This thriving industry boasts a staggering billion-dollar value and deserves utmost recognition and consideration. Matthew Isikhuemen, a member of Unreal Engine, elaborated on the essential components required for video games to encompass epic mega grants, epic game education, epic unreal fellowship, unreal marketplace, epic games store, and twin motion, among others.
Winston Ohunyon, the Creative Director at Dimension II Games stated that integrating culture into video games can be accomplished by employing narrative techniques that go beyond the conventional elements. Notably, these narrative tools encompass various aspects such as the plot, setting, theme, characterisation, composition, dialogue, and the overall story. Ohunyon stressed the importance of conveying these stories cautiously to safeguard our national identity. Additionally, Dooshima Anger, founder of Dooshimagames said in order to foster inclusivity within Nigeria’s video game industry, it is imperative to establish increased collaborations and raise awareness.
Revenue in the industry is expected to hit $460.20m in 2023.
The video game market is gaining immense traction among young individuals, fueled by the widespread use of affordable smartphones and easy access to the internet. Thus, the industry is progressively establishing itself as a key sector within the country’s ecosystem. Data released by Statista shows that the Nigerian video game market is projected to hit a substantial revenue of $460.20 million in the year 2023. By 2028, it is projected that the market volume will reach $693.80 million due to an anticipated annual growth rate (CAGR 2023-2028) of 8.56%.