Austin is the third largest gaming city in the country, so attracting companies to town isn't a problem. Keeping those companies in business has proved to be a bigger challenge.
"You have to have substantial investment up front," said Frank Coppersmith, COO at GameSalad, a local game developing company. "But in the end the likely hood of having a successful game is nothing better than a flip of a coin."
Just this year alone at least three major companies, including Disney's Junction Point, have closed their doors. It is mainly due to a change in the industry to mobile gaming.
"It's a dramatic shift that a lot of companies are struggling to keep up with," Coppersmith said.
Coppersmith knows the risks all too well as the production manager at GameSalad, the world's fastest game design engine, created in Austin four years ago.
There are at least 20 major gaming companies with studios in town, but just last year alone, over a thousand jobs were lost.
They're taking their business elsewhere leaving gamers wondering.
"What do they have that Austin is missing," asked Fred Schmidt, a local gaming expert who held a presentation on the topic at this year's SXSW interactive conference.
Some said the city should focus their attention on game incubators and home grown startups instead of established companies that can leave as fast as they come.
"We have the ability to attract the talent, but we are all struggling to anchor long term entrepreneurs in our community and it all starts with the people," Schmidt said.
Estimates indicate the gaming industry generated about $71 million for Austin last year alone.