Surrey Research Park

The University of Surrey and Surrey County Council are joining forces to cement Guildford’s status as the vibrant epicentre of the UK’s gaming industry, promising innovative developments and exciting opportunities


What do the names ‘Watch Dogs,’ ‘Forza Horizon,’ and ‘Burnout Paradise’ all have in common? They are all globally renowned titles of video game franchises developed by studios in Guildford, Surrey: Ubisoft, Playground Games, and Criterion Games (part of EA), respectively.

With so many AAA titles* developed in the area over the past 30 years, today the ancient Surrey market town is a cornerstone of global gaming development, and is responsible for a significant contribution to the UK’s lucrative video game market. Today the industry is estimated to be worth around £7bn – expected to rise to a staggering £8.5bn by the end of 2027 (Statista Market Forecast).


Securing Surrey’s future as the UK’s ‘Hollywood of video games’

The University of Surrey and Surrey County Council have recently launched a new initiative called Games and Innovation Nexus (GAIN) to build on Guildford’s legacy as the UK’s heartland of gaming innovation.

Backed by a £1.5 million boost from Research England and funding from Surrey County Council, this initiative is poised to power-up the region’s position on the gaming world map by spearheading collaboration and knowledge exchanges between the University of Surrey, boutique game developers and locally based big brand game studios.


Addressing challenges and seizing opportunities

Drawing on industry experts and academic research, GAIN will seek to address challenges like a gamer’s loyalty to their favourite titles – which is making it harder for smaller devel-opers to enter the marketplace – and explore the impact and opportunities created by disruptive technologies, such as blockchain, mixed reality, the metaverse and AI.   

GAIN participants will have opportunities to tap into the expertise of the University of Surrey’s leading behavioural psychologists, who will advise on how to encourage more users to play their games and support development of pioneering new gaming experiences. They will also benefit from the latest research and insights from the Surrey Institute for People-Centred AI, part of the University.

Much like the experience of Co-Operative gameplay, GAIN brings together the UK’s two largest gaming clusters outside of London – the Surrey (Guildford Games Cluster) and Warwickshire (Silicon Spa) – fostering unprecedented collaboration and creativity within the UK’s creative technology (CreaTech) sector.


Step into The Innovation Zone

A key deliverable for GAIN is establishing an Innovation Zone at the University of Surrey’s Stag Hill campus. Inside, seven gaming-spec computers will offer students and others a chance to train for e-sports tournaments, support gameplay research or brush up their digital skills. The space will also host industry talks and panels.

Caroline Fleming, Director of the Surrey Innovation District, who is based at Surrey Research Park, says: “GAIN is about bringing the university and the industry sectors together to help build skills and innovations of the future to allow the gaming industry to thrive, at a regional and national level.”    

Nick Royal, Innovation Project Lead, Surrey County Council, adds: “This exciting initiative will help to drive our local gaming cluster which is really important to Guildford and the wider Surrey area and is one of our key growth areas.”

Start your success story with Surrey Research Park today

The Surrey Research Park is a vibrant community perfect for boutique innovative game developers, pioneering digital creatives and
new technology start-ups.

Offering co-working spaces in the Surrey Technology Centre and Rocketdesk, alongside flexible units up to 40,000 sq ft, the Park caters to businesses of all sizes. These versatile spaces are ideal for fostering innovation in a setting that blends natural beauty with technological advancement.

The Park offers flexible tenancies and a vibrant and supportive ecosystem, which includes:

• Instant membership to sector clusters offering unequalled networking and access to funding opportunities. These include: Gaming, Cyber & Digital, Space, Sustainability, Human Health, Animal Health

• Unique opportunities to recruit and work with top talent from the University of Surrey

• Collaborations with the University of Surrey

• Growth support through SETsquared Surrey and the S100 Angel Investors Club

• Membership to The Surrey Women’s Enterprise Network (SWEN) for fostering connections

• Biodiverse and landscaped surroundings

• Social activities

• Discounted gym membership at the flagship Surrey Sports Centre

• Discounted child day care

• Parking

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