Home to the ancient Indus Valley Civilisation, dating back over 5,000 years, and a region of historic trade routes and vast empires, the Indian subcontinent was known for its commercial and cultural wealth for much of its long history. Four world religions originated on the Indian subcontinent: Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, and Sikhism. In addition, Zoroastrianism, Christianity, and Islam, all of which arrived in the 1st millennium CE, also helped shape the region's diverse culture. Following the decline of the last major Indian empire, the Mughal Empire, in the 18th century, the region was gradually annexed by the British East India Company and eventually the British Empire by the mid-19th century. India became an independent nation in 1947 after a struggle for independence that was marked by non-violent resistance led by Mahatma Gandhi. However, its independence was marked by a partition which divided the country into two nations: the Republic of India and Pakistan; in turn, Bangladesh later gained independence from Pakistan in 1971.
Today, the Republic of India is the world's tenth-largest economy by nominal GDP and third-largest by purchasing power parity (PPP). It has become one of the fastest-growing major economies, second only to neighbouring China, and is considered a newly industrialised country. A nuclear weapons state and a regional power, it has the third-largest standing army in the world and ranks ninth in military expenditure among nations. India has always been a pluralistic, multi-lingual and multi-ethnic society.
Despite its strong presence in the IT industry, India has always been a relatively small global player in the video games market. Nevertheless, Indian culture has had an influence on the early development of video games. An obvious example of this is the Indian origin of chess, which would later form the basis for various video game genres, including the strategy and role-playing genres. Indian culture has also frequently been referenced in numerous popular Japanese video games (ranging from RPGs like Final Fantasy to fighting games like Street Fighter), largely due to the influence of Buddhism on Japanese culture.
In recent years, UTV Group has been aiming to to be the first major Indian company to be a global player in the worldwide video game market. After purchasing Ignition Entertainment, they became the owners of UTV Ignition Entertainment, a video game developer and publisher which has branches across India, Britain, Japan, and America.