New database sheds light on Michigan’s videogame boom

By | February 11, 2021
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screenshot of database UI

A new database of Michigan-based videogame and extended reality (XR) developers is helping to highlight and organize the state’s rapidly growing scene. Built and maintained by CSE lecturer Austin Yarger, the Michigan Game Studios database collects data on over 65 active videogame and XR development studios in the state. He hopes it can be of use to the many audiences interested in the industry – students seeking work in the state, studios looking to expand their network, and researchers aiming to understand the growth of interactive technology in Michigan.

“We’re seeing data that suggests game and XR development in the state of Michigan is on the precipice of creating a positive feedback loop and going exponential,” Yarger says. The state has gone from around a dozen young, small studios to over 60 in a matter of years, with several on their second or third product release. Many of these studios hire local interns and participate in incubators like Ann Arbor SPARK. “University of Michigan students now have access to in-state opportunities that didn’t exist previously.”