The Italian government has launched a €4 million (£3.57 million) fund for game developers as part of a broader attempt to kickstart the nation's economy in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic (via GamesIndustry.biz).
The First Playable Fund will focus on studios hoping to launch new projects. Grants ranging from €10,000 to €200,000 will be made available to teams working through the concept and pre-production stages of development, and will cover up to 50 per cent of relevant costs.
The idea for the grant comes from the Italian Interactive Digital Entertainment Association, although the country's Ministry of Economic Development will help decide which studios will receive the money. The aim seems to be to assist small businesses and dev teams, rather than larger studios.
While neither grants for videogame developers nor post-COVID stimulus funds are a new concept, it's interesting to see Italy - which remains one of the worst-hit countries in the world - put so much emphasis on the industry so early on. The UK has its own form of financial relief for developers, but that has been in place since long before the coronavirus outbreak.