Annual international development competition expands for second year

Second Indie Game Challenge begins

The second annual Indie Game Challenge has been launched by the Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences (AIAS), GameStop Corp. and The Guildhall at Southern Methodist University.

The competition has been expanded, and now offers two grand prizes of $100,000 each as well as additional prize monies and scholarships of over $350,000 for both international professional and amateur developers.

The 2011 Challenge is open for entries until Oct 1 2010. Competing teams must register at the event website and submit a working beta copy of their game as well as a pitch video.

Over 250 teams entered the 2010 event. Gear by Team 3 from the Digipen Institute of Technology and Cogs, by San Francisco-based Lazy 8 Studios, took the two grand prizes at the 2010 D.I.C.E. Summit in Las Vegas.

"As if the two $100,000 grand prize awards weren’t enough, the Indie Game Challenge also offers teams the chance to compete for monetary awards for technical, art and gameplay achievements and a scholarship to The Guildhall at SMU valued at more than $50,000," said GameStop’s senior vice president of marketing Mike Hogan.

"In addition, all finalists will receive valuable exposure by having their pitch videos posted on GameStop TV, which is broadcast daily in more than 4,500 locations across the U.S., as well as on the Indie Game Challenge website. More importantly, finalists will be given the priceless opportunity to present their games to established industry experts at the D.I.C.E. Summit in Las Vegas next February,” he added.

President of AIAS Josesph Olin said the inaugural Indie Game Challenge was rewarding beyond the three partners’ expectations.

"The number of games submitted was surpassed by the overall quality of the 12 finalists. The three partners collectively are committed to cultivating the immense pool of talent within this global medium – which is what led to opening the Challenge to international teams," he said.

Executive director of The Guildhall at SMU Peter E. Raad stated that the key to the Indie Game Challenge rests with the judges.

"The judging process to which each game is subjected – while arduous – is critical to identifying the best-of-the-best. The judges are senior, accredited-members of the AIAS who actually take the time to play the beta versions of each game," he said.

"In the end, up to 12 finalist teams – six professional and six non-professional – will be announced in January 2011. Members of each finalist team will be flown to an awards reception at the 2011 D.I.C.E. Summit in February 2011 for an experience of a lifetime."

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