Tshimologong Digital Innovation Precinct launched a Gaming Incubation hub on Friday, 1 July.
The event took place at Witswaterands Tshimologong Digital Innovation Precinct in Braamfontein.
Game lovers were excited to see the hub as it meant a lot to them. Young and old were on their feet as they were shown all kinds of different games during the launch.
This follows discussions that the South African gaming industry did over the years to create a space for game players.
The Tshimologong team saw the scarcity of the hubs around Mzansi and brought the resources closer to the people.
The Tshimologong Incubation Hub aims to target mid-level to experienced game developers. They want to support them in developing either their new or existing video games.
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Their main priority is to bridge the gap in the barriers of entry for black startups by assisting them in developing a more economically sustainable industry and providing access to the market.
Lesley Donna Williams Tshimologong Digital Innovation Precinct CEO said the video games in South Africa have grown over the years. She said their own research has shown that more and more people are interested in games.
“We spent just over a year researching the sector, we partnered with Nkiko Hertier of Afri-Games who is also being pioneered out there and a lot of people have contributed to the Eco-system as we have been doing it voluntarily as we believe in it.”
She said the launch of the gaming incubation programme is the first key action from the research to growing SME studios in Mzansi and that they have partnered with Telkom, AFD, IFAS and Wits University.
She added that they would love to see the sector contributing to economic growth.
The incubation programme will run for 9 months Which will provide customized support and a series of workshops focusing on business fundamentals, entrepreneurship, and the development of industry-related soft skills.
Two professional gamers, Raven Eloff and Thabo Moloi shared their journey as professional players with Daily Sun.
Thabo Moloi (20) said he started gaming with his friends at home and was always the best and came out first all the time.
“Obviously, I started competing with my friends at home you know, I was the best amongst my friends at home, so I thought I’ll be the best in South Africa one day then yeah I started playing online though it was tough at first, eventually I got there,” Moloi added.
Raven Eloff (18) said he was never a player before the pandemic and that he turned professional during the lockdown.
“I started becoming a gamer during the Covid times and wasn’t really a gamer before that, and when Covid-19 hit I decided to get myself a setup and stuff for gaming and started playing fortnights and I saw my potential, and I decided to make this a profession.”
They both said convincing their parents that they are professional gamers was not easy until they started making money out of it.
Eloff said: “It was never easy, but soon as I started making money, they got used to the idea of being a professional gamer.”
Moloi added: “My parents were the hardest to convince, until I won the biggest competition in 2018 and came out first place winning R400K.”