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Study Shows Best Cities for Gamers and Developers in UK

New research has revealed that Manchester is the gaming capital of the UK.

A study by a Japanese online gaming site 6takarakuji analyzed and ranked companies that develop video games, universities offering computer science, and the average salaries of game developers in every major city of the UK to award each city an index score, revealing the country’s gaming capital. 

The study reveals Manchester as the UK’s gaming capital, ranking first on the list. There are 46 gaming companies in the city, measuring one for every 12,000 people.  The University of Manchester ranks top among the seven universities offering computer science in the city. Game developers in the city rake in an average of £49,878 annually.  

The second UK gaming hotspot is London. The capital city’s gaming statistics equate to 6,268 people per company, the highest in the UK. Imperial College London is top among the city’s 35 universities offering computer science. Individuals eyeing a game developer role can expect an average of £58,922, the highest on the list. 

Liverpool is the third-best city for gaming. Companies such as Playrise and Thumbstar Games are among the 26 in the city, with developers earning an average salary of £49,047 yearly. Five universities in the city offer computer science, with the University of Liverpool ranking as the best in the city.  

Rank

City

Gaming Company to City Population

Computer Science University to City Population

Game Developer Annual Salary

Index score

1

Manchester

12,000

78,857

£49,878

10

2

London

6,268

251,423

£58,922

14

3

Liverpool

18,696

97,220

£49,047

17

4

Cardiff

10,354

181,200

£48,858

18

5

Bristol

11,522

236,200

£46,580

21

6

Edinburgh

16,788

110,800

£44,882

22

7

Newcastle upon Tyne

27,291

30,020

£43,083

23

7

Nottingham

12,450

107,900

£41,955

23

8

Coventry

15,013

115,100

£44,664

24

9

Leeds

50,750

162,400

£57,609

25

10

Sheffield

16,864

278,250

£45,186

30

Cardiff follows narrowly in fourth on the table. Home to Gamers club, the city boasts 35 gaming companies. In the Welsh capital, a game developer can earn £4,071 on average every month, and there are two universities offering computer science, namely Cardiff University and Cardiff Metropolitan University. 

Ranking fifth on the list is Bristol. The city’s gaming companies equate to 11,522 people per company, totaling 41, they include Introvert Studios, Paper Street Games, and ColePowered. Universities offering computer science courses in the city are the University of Bristol and University of the West England Bristol. Game developers here can take home an average salary of £46,580 annually. 

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Edinburgh is the UK’s sixth gaming city, with 33 gaming companies measuring 16,788 people to one. There are five universities in the city offering computer science namely the University of Edinburgh and Heriot-Watt University. Game developers can expect an average salary of £44,882, yearly. 

Newcastle upon Tyne ranks seventh, with the strongest population-to-university ratio of 30,020 people to one. The city’s average annual salary for game developers sits at £43,083. There are 11 gaming companies here.  

Sharing the same spot is Nottingham, with three universities offering computer science and 26 gaming companies in the city. Game developers in Nottingham can expect an annual salary of £41,955 on average. 

Coventry comes eighth, having 23 gaming companies in the city and three universities offering computer science. In ninth place is Leeds, with an average game developer salary of £57,609 but a weak population-to-gaming company ratio of 50,750 people to one. 

Looking at the study, a spokesperson from 6takarakuji commented:

This study reveals that people looking for a career in the gaming industry are spoiled for choice with the opportunities across the country, but especially in Manchester. The city offers a great combination of learning and work opportunities, and gaming events like Play Expo and Anime & Gaming Con are just a few of many taking place this year.

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