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The Initiative Creative Gaming bestows the international Creative Gaming Awards in three categories as part of the PLAY - Creative Gaming Festival (November 5th-13th, 2021). Artists and developers can submit games and playable media that allow players to interact with the game in a creative way.

Indie game developers from around the world have the chance to submit their games and playable media. Hardware games and installations are very welcome. In addition, all projects in the PLAY21 exhibition can win the Audience Award.

Creativity can mean overturning existing structures, finding new perspectives or simply questioning previous game ideas and finding originality. We do not want to restrict you in any way and we welcome all forms of video games, playful media and performances - whether they are games with a narrative focus; projects that play with the game controls as we know them; video games as media art; or whether you have developed a game that you find entertaining and that you would like others to play as well.

AWARD CATEGORIES

MOST CREATIVE GAME

The Most Creative Game award honors games and playful media works from around the world that give players the opportunity to interact creatively within the game. The creative freedom can arise in the interaction with the game, out of the game or in the mind of the player.
For example, works in this category may have multiple story paths, non-linear gameplay, role-play opportunities, unexpected interactions with other gamers, or be open to interpretation. The creativity of the players can also be stimulated by built-in editors or the possibility of enriching the game world with your own creations, designs and your own social rules.

What can be submitted?
Finished projects / prototypes / alpha or beta versions, playful media, performances, alternative controllers

What can you win?
The winners will receive prize money of € 1,000 and the PLAY AWARD trophy. All nominated projects will be showcased in the official PLAY21 exhibition in our virtual festival location - no build up, no travel necessary.

MOST INNOVATIVE NEWCOMER

The Most Innovative Newcomer Award honors artists worldwide who have produced a new creative game or playful media work. The winners, be they school-aged teenagers, students, indie developers or artist collectives, prove their creativity with a really innovative debut work. This can be characterized by special gameplay, transmediality, unprecedented or unexpected interaction possibilities in the game, essential graphic innovations, new interfaces, unusual atmospheres, visual breakthroughs or new topics that are dealt with.

What can be submitted?
finished projects / prototypes / alpha or beta versions, playful media, performances, alternative controllers

What can you win?
The winners will be supported for one year by a mentorship from the gaming industry and will receive the PLAY AWARD trophy. All nominated projects will be showcased in the official PLAY21 exhibition in our virtual festival location - no build up, no travel necessary.

AUDIENCE AWARD

During the festival, visitors of the festival can choose their favorite from all the works in the exhibition, which will also be honored with the PLAY trophy at the Awards Show.

SUBMISSIONS

REQUIREMENTS
Fully completed registration form at playfestival.de/award-en
Finished products / prototypes / alpha or beta versions
If necessary, installation instructions and an explanation of the controls
A short gameplay video (max. 3 minutes) as well as screenshots and press material

TECHNICAL REQUIREMENTS
Games and applications for PC & Mac (Steam, Origin, Uplay, GoG, itch.io, installation files)
XboX 360, XboX Series X, Playstation 3 & 4, Nintendo Switch, Android, iOS, Oculus Quest
Videos of performative works, installation structures and alternative controllers (can also be sent on request)


Submitting and participating is free of charge.
July 5th – August 1st

SUBMISSIONS CLOSED

PLAYTEST COMMUNITY

If you are at least 13 years old, did not submit your own work and have an interest in indiegames, interactive media and media art, you can apply to be a PLAYtester. Together, we'll play the fantastic submissions and you'll help with the ratings to decide the nominees.

The testing phase will begin with the first submissions on July 5, 2021 and end on September 5, 2021,
during which time you will be matched to approximately five entries.


You will receive:

- exclusive access to numerous exciting games and media artworks.
- access to our Discord channel for PLAYtesters only.
- the possibility to help with your reviews in the selection of the nominees.
- the chance to use the tested games for Let's Plays or reviews (only with explicit permission of the developers!).

TEST FINISHED

WHAT'S NEXT?

After the submission deadline (August 1st, 2021), the team from the PLAY - Creative Gaming Festival and selected PLAYtesters will play and judge all submissions. These ratings will determine the nominees in the Most Creative Game and Most Innovative Newcomer categories and will be officially announced on the website and social media channels on October 4th, 2021. A jury of experts finally determines the winners in the award show.

Further information and the terms and conditions can be found on our website, please visit:

AWARDING CEREMONY

The members of the nominated developer teams receive the VIP festival ticket. This guarantees complete access to the digital festival location, in which all aspects of the program, films and the interactive exhibition can be experienced together and socialized. All nominated works are part of the exhibition and can win the Audience Award chosen by the festival attendees.

The awarding ceremony will take place on
November 12th, 2021 at the PLAY – Creative Gaming festival (online).

AT A GLANCE

BEGIN OF SUBMISSIONS AND PLAYTEST July 5th, 2021

DEADLINE August 1st, 2021

END OF PLAYTEST: 5. September 2021

AWARDING CEREMONY November 12th, 2021

CONTACT award[at]playfestival.de or at discord