Italian Game Developers

Italians Make Video Games Too!

The United States and Japan undeniably dominate the world of video games with Sony, Xbox and Nintendo. Here at GamePix we love to celebrate what is happening across the industry, which is why we dedicate time and space to Italian game developers. All over the world there are people making and producing video games, and few countries do it as well as Italy.

Four in every ten Italians are gamers, making Italy one of the top ten game markets in the world. According to a survey by Italy’s Game Association, Italy’s game industry grew 45% from 2018 to 2021. There are more than 1600 developers and more than 160 game studios that are offering game development services. Maybe you’ve played games by Italian game developers without even knowing it!

The History of Video Games in Italy

Italy is not known as one of the global producers of video games, but the country has a rich and diverse cultural and gaming history. Here are some notable moments from the history of Italian computer games:

  • The first Italian computer was the “Elea 9003,” built and designed in 1959 by the Italian inventor Federico Faggin. It was considered a pioneering and groundbreaking computer for its time.
  • One of the first big Italian games was Valhala, made in 1983 by Vulcan Software.
  • In the 1990s, while the Super Nintendo Entertainment System and PlayStation were dominating the video games market, there was huge growth in Italy. Racing games were a particular genre in which Italian developers specialized, with Milestone’s Superbike World Championship a significant release. Simulations and strategy games were also incredibly popular, with SimCity 2000 among Italy’s first global games on the market.

Today Italy’s gaming scene continues to become more and more exciting, talked about and respected. This has been helped by universities offering courses and degrees in video game design, allowing thousands of aspiring game designers to flourish. Recently Italy's Minister of Culture, Dario Franceschini, said that “Video games are the fruit of creative genius, and it is right that, as in the case of cinema and audiovisuals, they should receive support if they are recognized as works of particular cultural value.” The trade body IIDEA also released its annual Italian games industry census, showing that 1,600 people are now working in games in the country, compared to 1,100 in 2018. The same survey also shows that there are 160 game development studios in the country

As one of the most fashionable, desirable and business-savvy countries in Europe it is no surprise there are so many creative minds working on games in Italy. And best of all, you can follow what they are creating right here at GamePix!

Milan Games Week

Throughout the 2000s, Italy hosted gaming events. Milan Games Week was first held in 2010, attracting gamers and publishers from across the world. This celebration of gaming offers audiences of all ages the biggest event dedicated to video games, e-Sports, digital entertainment and geek culture. Every year thousands of visitors come from across the world to hear all the latest news from the gaming industry. It’s where deals are made, voices are heard and secrets are shared!

Anywhere You Want Me

Playing games on a mobile device has taken Italy’s gaming scene by storm. Back in 2021, mobile games made up almost 60 percent of video game revenue in Italy. In 2022, smartphones came out as the most popular gaming device in a survey of the nation’s gaming habits, and among the most popular online games was Coin Master, an online game where you can join friends or strangers from across the world to try and build the greatest Viking village of all. Players from every corner of the globe would take part in raids, attacks and spins to see if they could be crowned the next Coin Master, traveling across time and magical landscapes in a bid to be the best king, pirate or hippie!

What You Need

If you’d like to play Italian games online, the selection we have right here at GamePix is the perfect way to do it— and luckily you don’t need to speak Italian to play and enjoy games by Italian video developers! Like all of our online browser games they’re free to play and can be accessed on any device with a browser—so you’ll be able to enjoy them on whatever it is you’re using. Most of the Italian games here at GamePix are easy to pick up, especially if you are an experienced video game player. Some have translations into English (or other languages) and some need no instructions at all. No matter what the language, the best games are always intuitive. Maybe you’ll even learn some new Italian words along the way! Fantastico!


Why would I be interested in playing Italian video games?

Italy might not be the first country you think of when you think of video games, but these games may lead you to discover something unique that you might not find in titles from other countries. There is an excitement about playing something not many people know about, and you could find something new you can introduce others to—what’s more enjoyable than that? The feeling of discovery is something we don’t often experience in life, and playing games by Italian video game developers might make you feel part of a small cultural revolution. If a game captures the imagination of a player then it certainly doesn’t matter where it was made!

Is Super Mario Italian?

He is! Created in Japan, the Mario character first appeared in the Nintendo game Donkey Kong, where his original name was Jumpman! It was only in later games that his real name emerged—did you know that his full name is Mario Mario? Italian culture and themes emerge throughout the Mario universe, sometimes center stage, sometimes hidden in the background. There are many references to pasta and pizza and Italian architecture can be seen in several of the games. Perhaps because of Mario, Italy will always have a special place in the history of video games. You could say Mario is one of the first Italian gamers!

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