Developing computer games and off-the-shelf software

R&D in gaming and software sectors


If you are considering starting up a business in the video games and interactive entertainment industry or software industry, it's important to carry out research and development (R&D).

R&D includes:

  • ensuring that your product is both needed and wanted
  • checking it is not available elsewhere under a different guise
  • checking that it is not under development elsewhere - you can research this through industry networks
  • producing a solid brand with real sales potential

Time spent on research is essential and valuable. It is important that you understand the industry and research, in particular:

  • your target audience - determine what they want, what they will and will not buy, how their buying process works, whether they buy into a brand (eg a series) or a one-off product
  • potential markets
  • your competitors
  • your unique selling point (USP)
  • the history of the product life of similar or comparable products

It's always a good idea to take professional advice and consult those with experience in the industry. For more information, see how to manage your research, design and development.

Businesses in Northern Ireland may also be able to get help with R&D from Invest Northern Ireland (NI).

Good project management is key to the success of any R&D project. There are various models for managing projects, including agile project management - a method of delivering projects in a highly flexible and interactive manner.

Companies in the UK are turning to other regions such as China, India, and Eastern Europe to outsource operations. The benefits of outsourcing include increased efficiency and lower costs. However, you should consider the loss of direct control over a project and quality assurance.