Announcing the grants, Victoria's Minister for Innovation, Services and Small Business, Louise Asher, said the two companies would receive the funding through Film Victoria's Games Investment program.
According to the Minister, games and interactive content are the fastest growing areas of the screen industry, and Victoria has been a 'leader in the development of the games industry in Australia.'
'The Coalition Government is taking a leading role in driving and supporting Victoria's growing digital media sector. By investing in commercially appealing projects we are assisting games developers to create content that attracts overseas interest, generates further investment, reaches a substantial target audience and ultimately succeeds in the global market.'
Ms Asher said that funding support for FanStand, an online sports player trading football game, and Sprint Cars 2012, an arcade-simulation of sprint car racing, brings the Coalition Government's support of the games sector to $1.2 million across 21 projects since December 2010. 'Investing in our local games projects helps game developers sustain and grow their businesses as well as bringing significant economic benefits to our state.'
Film Victoria CEO Jenni Tosi said the organisation's games investment program enabled developers to create games for distribution on any platform, or to create a prototype game to show potential distributors or publishers.
'We have a wealth of talent and innovation in our local games sector. By assisting game developers create original intellectual property we are helping create a strong local industry and a rich environment for digital content innovation with an increasing number of original games being released by Victorian companies.
According to Tosi, Film Victoria's support to date is reaping rewards, with 'more Victorian companies able to commercialise their own intellectual property than ever before.'
CEO of Big Ant Studios, Ross Symons, said he was 'thrilled' with the Victorian Coalition Government's continued support for the Australian games industry, and the support for the company's Sprint Cars title would allow it to employ highly skilled software engineers and artists, and 'ensure all of the IP generated remains in Melbourne.'