Looney Labs Icehouse Mailing list Archive

Re: [Icehouse] Suggestions for future Icehouse Game Design Competitions

  • FromDavid Artman <david.artman@xxxxxxxxx>
  • DateWed, 4 Nov 2009 16:26:42 -0500
On Wed, Nov 4, 2009 at 3:38 PM, Dale Sheldon <dales@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
Maybe we should be less like a science fair, and more like the academy awards? Instead of "here's the submit window", rather go with "anything that came out in the last year is up for consideration".

Not a bad idea... but that could well mean MANY more games up for judging--8 on Existing Game History (as far as I can tell) and umpty-score on Games In Development. Without a submission process, what will winnow down that list (note that the Oscars has a selection committee, as does the People's Choice Awards, which is more like the IGDC in terms of judges)?

That also kills design-restricted competitions, not that I reckon that will much matter this time around. I'd hate to lose that aspect of the IGDC to a shift in basic qualifications. More generally, that removes all of the excitement and challenge of "design NOW" which has consistently generated 5 to 8 new games twice annually. Sure, some folks designed THEN and submit NOW, but no where near all of the entries; must we, then, rely totally on unsolicited, random game invention year-to-year?

Further, I think a submissions stage makes designers participate and pay attention (and hopefully promote elsewhere). If any old design that dropped since January 2009 qualifies, there might be folks giving feedback to games that are, for all intents and purposed, abandoned by their designers. It's hard enough to write good feedback without seeing it languish unread or unused (viz Who Made The Team, a game with a LOT of potential that hasn't been edited since it was given feedback in May).

Finally, what about the poor souls who wanted to submit open-design games to the last IGDC but were prevented from doing so due to the terminological design restriction? Is that set of past designs forever orphaned, or would this year's "Best Of" grandfather in any past design?

I'm all in favor of something that shakes the IGDC up and makes it something in which folks want to participate, PARTICULARLY folks not on this list or the wiki. I'm just not sure that "Best Of 20xx" is the way to transition it. MAYBE do that for the 2011, 20th Anniversary of Icehouse? Or as a parallel, more-passive (for designers) award process that takes place irrespective of the IGDC? Like, do the Best Of Pyramid Games Awards each year, around January/February, but meanwhile run the IGDC when we have the best chance of getting players and reviewers and judges (i.e. not around holidays or exams).

Huh... The neat thing about Best Of is that it doesn't really take much coordination at all: make a Gmail account for it, announce it, and tell folks to email their Top Three (or whatever) and accumulate them for, oh, a couple of months (start soon!). Then run Condorcet over it and, voila!, results without the fuss.

Heck, I'd say Just Do It, Dale... but I wouldn't say let that replace the IGDC. "Design" is a part of the comp's name for a big reason, as I see it.

But I am only one vote....

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