In Budget 2023, the Government provided funding of $40 million per annum for delivering and administering a rebate for the game development sector, with a view to support the ongoing development and growth of game development in Aotearoa New Zealand.

The Game Development Sector Rebate (GDSR) is a rebate on eligible expenditures of eligible firms, at a rate of 20%. A firm’s rebate payment will be capped at $3 million per annum and the minimum qualifying expenditure per annum is $250,000. The GDSR is effective as of 1 April 2023 which means that eligible firms will be able to count eligible expenditures from this date.

The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) has policy responsibility for the GDSR while NZ On Air has been appointed as the agency to administer this rebate due to our experience as a funding agency and our experience in the gaming space (limited to children's games funding to date.)

After two years, MBIE will review the scheme to gauge uptake and early impact, and it will undertake a further review at around the four-year mark to assess whether the scheme provides net benefits to New Zealand and whether modifications should be pursued.

Read on for all the information you need on the GDSR Guidelines, the Terms of Trade or to Register as an applicant.

GDSR Process Flowchart

The GDSR Process Flowchart - orange


Dec 2023 - Feb 2024: Letters of Acknowledgement sent out to eligible applicants

Dec 2023 - Feb 2024: Statement of Readiness process undertaken by eligible applicants

1 Apr 2024: Submissions Portal open for Final Applications

3 Apr 2024 - GDSR Webinar on Final Application process (see Events below to view a recording of the webinar)

30 Apr 2024: Deadline for Final Applications

1 Apr – 28 May 2024: Application and assessment processing

14 June 2024 - Applicants notified of decisions (no later than 14 June)

21 June 2024 - Invoices able to be sent from successful applicants to NZ On Air for processing

June-August 2024 - NZ On Air processes invoices

How to Apply

Please note, if you did not register by midday 30 November, your application will not be able to be processed in time to submit a GDSR Final Application by the deadline for the 2023/24 year.

Click on the link below to begin:

Register for GDSR

Resources to Apply

Additional Resources

These logo assets are provided to game studios to acknowledge NZ On Air for its support as part of the GDSR, and the accreditation requirements form part of your contract when you receive the rebate.

It is important that New Zealanders know that your business has been provided taxpayer dollars via the GDSR – having this consistent accreditation on your website and in your game helps to reinforce the value of the rebate to Aotearoa New Zealand and helps build awareness of the GDSR.

As well as the GDSR Animated and GDSR Static Logo folders, below you can also find the GDSR Style and Accreditation Guidelines. These Guidelines will help you understand the requirements for use of the logo as well as where and how they must appear within your business’ website, in your game website, game credits or loading page, if applicable.

Should you have any further queries around use of the GDSR logo assets, please contact:


Webinar GDSR image 3 Apr 24

To view the webinar on the Game Development Sector Rebate scheme on 3 April 2024, you can view it here. Or you can see the slide deck for the presentation below.

GDSR Webinar 2

To view the webinar on the Game Development Sector Rebate scheme on 14 Feb 2024, you can view it here.

GDSR Webinar 1

If you missed our webinar on the Game Development Sector Rebate scheme on 17 October 2023, you can view it here.

Pilot Phase - Archive

As part of a pilot phase of the scheme - exceptionally for year one of the scheme - eligible businesses that anticipated expenditure for the year 1 April 2023 to 31 March 2024 of $5 million NZD or above, were able to submit an application for a rebate on eligible expenditures incurred in the six months 1 April 2023 to 30 September 2023. This Pilot Phase was designed so NZ On Air could test its rebate administrative processes with a small group of studios before the standard registration and application process takes place in 2024.

A business that considered it met that $5 million threshold was able to register their interest with NZ On Air, to process and confirm its eligibility to submit an application into the pilot phase. NZ On Air assessed the application and, if the standard criteria outlined in the GDSR Guidelines related to eligible businesses, eligible games and eligible expenditures was met, NZ On Air would pay the claim. Payment would then flow to the business in the October-December 2023 quarter.

Pilot Phase Registration

From 29 September, a business could email NZ On Air at to register an Expression of Interest (EOI) for the Pilot Phase.

They needed to confirm and provide the following detail in that email:

  • Confirm the business undertakes relevant games development activity as those outlined in the GDSR Guidelines
  • Confirm the business is either a New Zealand resident or has a permanent establishment in New Zealand
  • Submit financial statements (or forecasts) covering the period from 1 April 2023 to 31 March 2024, as well as those from the two preceding years (if available). This information enabled NZ On Air to evaluate whether the anticipated expenditures for the year spanning 1 April 2023 to 31 March 2024 would meet or exceed the Pilot Phase threshold of $5 million NZD.

Pilot Phase Application 

After NZ On Air assessed the EOI, the business received either an approval or a decline email based on the information supplied and NZ On Air's determination of eligibility for the Pilot Phase.

If approved, the business was sent a private link to the Pilot Phase Application Form on NZ On Air’s Air’s online application system.

An eligible business submitting an application into the Pilot Phase was not required to provide a Statement of Readiness.

The business was asked to confirm that it agreed to repay any payments made if NZ On Air determined at a later date that the business was not entitled or the entitlement changed.

A business submitting an application to this Pilot Phase may submit a second application at the end of the full eligibility period, in line with the standard process, for its expenditure incurred in the six months 1 October 2023 to 31 March 2024. Any over- or under-payment made to the business as a result of the pilot phase application will be balanced as part of their later standard application and assessment process that happens post 31 March 2024.

Rebate Decisions

  • 2Up Games
  • A44
  • Balancing Monkey Games
  • Beyond Studios
  • Blind Squirrel Games
  • CamShaft Software
  • CerebralFix
  • Deep Field Games
  • Digital Confectioners
  • Dinosaur Polo Club*
  • Dreamloft Games
  • Gfactor
  • Grinding Gear Games
  • Hashbane Interactive
  • Janzen IP Co
  • Flightless
  • Mighty Eyes
  • Mytona
  • Niantic Aotearoa NZ
  • Ninja Kiwi
  • Outerdawn
  • PikPok
  • RiffRaff Games
  • RocketWerkz
  • Runaway
  • Sharpmind Games
  • Space Rock Games
  • StaplesVR
  • Synty Studios
  • Usual Suspects Studios
  • Wētā Workshop
  • Zero King

*NZ On Air's GDSR Programme Director Chantelle Cole was the CEO of Dinosaur Polo Club prior to joining the agency. NZ On Air has a strict Conflict of Interest policy that ensured she had no involvement with the rebate assessment for this company.

The following nine studios only received six months funding during the Pilot Phase round, so could only access the remainder of the year’s funding from the Year One general registration round.

  • A44
  • CerebralFix
  • Futureverse
  • Grinding Gear Games
  • Mytona
  • Ninja Kiwi
  • PikPok
  • RocketWerkz
  • Wētā Workshop

Job Vacancies

Any other new roles will be advertised in our GDSR newsletters. If you haven't signed up for our newsletters, you can do so here.

Contact Us

If you have any queries on the GDSR, please feel free to get in touch with us. Just email

Also, regardless of whether you are going to register as an eligible business for the GDSR, you can subscribe to newsletter updates from NZ On Air about the scheme. To subscribe, just click on the sign up button below.