Independent Games Festival

The Independent Games Festival (IGF) is an annual festival at the Game Developers Conference (GDC), the largest annual gathering of the indie video game industry.

The IGF competition awards a total of $50,000 in prizes to independent developers in Main Competition and Student Competition categories, and held around the same time as the Game Developers Choice Awards event.

Founded in 1998 to promote independent video game developers, and innovation in video game development,[1] IGF wants to do for the independent game community the same benefit the Sundance Film Festival has brought to the independent film community,[1] IGF is owned by the CMP Game Group, producers of the Game Developers Conference, Game Developer magazine, and[1]

Competition Structure

The festival awards ceremony is split into two broad categories: the main IGF competition and the IGF Student Showcase.[1]

The main Independent Games Festival, held in March 2012 at San Francisco's GDC 2012, distributed nine major awards:[1]

  • Seumas McNally Grand Prize ($30,000)
  • Nuovo Award ($5,000) (originally Innovation Award)
  • Excellence In Visual Art ($3,000)
  • Excellence In Audio ($3,000)
  • Excellence in Design ($3,000)
  • Technical Excellence ($3,000)
  • Best Mobile Game ($3,000)
  • Audience Award ($3,000)

An additional award, "Excellent in Narrative", was added for the 2013 IGF.[2]

In addition, the IGF's Student Showcase competition gives out the following awards each year:

  • IGF Student Showcase Winner (eight winners, $500)
  • Best Student Game ($3000)

Prior to the Festival, developers have the opportunity to submit their game in a playable state to the IGF organization committee for a small fee. These titles are then send to approximately 300 game industry representatives on the Nominating Committee; these representatives include both indie developers and more mainstream developers and publishers. Each Committee member can nominate any of the provided games to one or more of the categories. Then, for each award category, a pre-selected jury of between seven and fifteen members reviews the nominations and makes a final selection of six finalists (eight for the Nuovo award) and a number of honorable mentions.

The selected finalists are expected to present their games at the IGF during the Games Developers Conference; the show provides them a booth space and access to the convention, but finalists either must secure their own travel and lodgings, or name a proxy to demonstrate their games. During the convention, a separate jury selected by the IGF organization committee will review each game, and just prior to the awards, vote for one game in each category. The only exception is the Audience Award, which is voted through online forms by anyone interested.[3]

IGF Competition award history

Years given below indicate the year when the award was given, with the games or developers being recognized from the previous year.

(Main) IGF Competition

Seumas McNally Grand Prize ($30,000)

Nuovo (Innovation) Award ($5,000)

Excellence In Visual Art ($3,000)

Excellence In Audio ($3,000)

Excellence in Design ($3,000)

Technical Excellence ($3,000)

This award was retired starting from the 2014 competition onward.

Excellence in Narrative

Best Mobile Game ($3,000)

Best Web Browser Game (2006-2008)

  • 2008: Iron Dukes ($2,500)
  • 2007: Samorost 2 ($2,500)
  • 2006: Dad 'N Me ($2,500)
  • This category replaced the separate prizes for Web/Downloadable games awarded in 2004 & 2005.

Audience Award ($3,000)

alt.ctrl.GDC Award ($3,000)

For games that feature unusual controls or user interactions.

  • 2019: Hot Swap[4]
  • 2018: Puppet Pandemonium
  • 2017: Fear Sphere

IGF Mod Competition (2006–2007)

2007 Mod Awards

Best Mod ($5,000 Overall): Weekday Warrior (Half-Life 2)
Best Singleplayer FPS Mod ($500): Weekday Warrior (Half-Life 2)
Best Multiplayer FPS Mod ($500): Eternal Silence (Half-Life 2)
Best RPG Mod ($500): Darkness over Daggerford (Neverwinter Nights)
Best 'Other' Mod ($500): Spawns Of Deflebub (Unreal Tournament 2004)

2006 Mod Awards

Best Mod – Doom 3 ($2,500): Last Man Standing Coop
Best Mod – Half-Life 2 ($2,500): Dystopia
Best Mod – Neverwinter Nights ($2,500): Rose Of Eternity: Chapter 1
Best Mod – Unreal Tournament 2004 ($2,500): Path Of Vengeance

IGF Student Showcase Winner

  • 2019: After Hours[4]
  • 2018: Baba Is You
  • 2017: Un pas fragile
  • 2016: Beglitched
  • 2015: Close Your
  • 2014: Risk of Rain
  • 2013: Zineth
  • 2012: Way
  • 2011: Fract  Octodad
  • 2010: Continuity  Dreamside Maroon  Gear  Igneous
  • 2009: Tag: The Power of Paint
  • 2008: Synaesthete
  • 2007: Toblo
  • 2006: Ballistic  Cloud  Colormental  Narbacular Drop  Ocular Ink  Orblitz  Palette  Sea of Chaos  Goliath  NERO
  • 2005: Dyadin  Intergalactic Shopping Maniacs  Mutton Mayhem  Rock Station  Scavenger Hunt  Soccer Ref  Squirrel Squabble  Stars and Stripes  Team Robot  War, Siege & Conquest: Battle for Gaia
  • 2004: Dark Archon 2  Fatal Traction  Growbot  Hexvex  Hyperbol  Ice Wars  Kube Kombat  Scrapped  Treefort Wars  Xazzon

See also

  • Indiecade
  • Independent video game development


  1. "About the IGF",
  2. "2013 Independent Games Festival announces Main Competition finalists". Gamasutra. 2013-01-07. Retrieved 2013-01-07.
  3. "IGF Competition Rules". Independent Games Festival. Retrieved January 3, 2018.
  4. "Return of the Obra Dinn takes Grand Prize at the 21st IGF Awards!". Gamasutra. March 20, 2019. Retrieved March 20, 2019.
  5. Chan, Stephanie (March 21, 2018). "Night in the Woods wins the grand prize at the Independent Games Festival". Venture Beat. Retrieved March 21, 2018.
This article is issued from Wikipedia. The text is licensed under Creative Commons - Attribution - Sharealike. Additional terms may apply for the media files.