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2011 Independent Games Festival Debuts Jury For Seumas McNally Grand Prize

2011 Independent Games Festival Debuts Jury For Seumas McNally Grand Prize

December 31, 2010 | By Staff

December 31, 2010 | By Staff
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Organizers of the 2011 Independent Games Festival are pleased to announce the jury panel that will determine the finalists and winner of its Seumas McNally Grand Prize, the top category which seeks to highlight the the top innovation, quality, impressiveness, and enjoyability of all games entered in this year's Festival.

Prior finalists and winners of the IGF Seumas McNally Grand Prize, named in honor of the late creator of 2000's IGF award-winning Tread Marks, have included Kloonigames' hand-drawn puzzler Crayon Physics Deluxe, Erik Svedang's charmingly surrealist adventure Blueberry Garden, and Pocketwatch Games' abstracted multiplayer heist game Monaco.

This year, the jury will receive recommendations from the wider body of over 150 IGF Main Competition judges (itself including notable former IGF winners, finalists and indie game notables including Alex May, Kellee Santiago, Jarrad 'Farbs' Woods, Brandon McCartin, and Miguel Sternberg) as they consider the merits of each of the five finalists and eventual award winner.

The jury, made up of representatives from all the Festival's specific category jurists, consists of the following:

- Danny Baranowsky (Founder of dB soundworks and musician behind games like Canabalt & 2010 Excellence in Audio finalist Super Meat Boy.)
- Raigan Burns (Co-creator of Metanet's IGF award-winning N.)
- Ron Carmel (Co-creator of 2D Boy's IGF award-winning World of Goo.)
- Dylan Cuthbert (co-founder and designer at Q-Games, creators of the PixelJunk series of games.)
- Jakub Dvorsky (founder, Amanita Design, creators of multiple IGF award winning games like Samorost & Machinarium.)
- Phil Fish (chief creative officer at Polytron Corporation, creators of the IGF award winning Fez.)
- Kyle Gabler (co-founder of 2D Boy, creators of IGF award winner World of Goo; co-founder of upstart indie dev Tomorrow Corporation.)
- Kyle Gray (designer of Henry Hatsworth in the Puzzling Adventure, co-founder Tomorrow Corporation and Experimental Gameplay Project.)
- Robin Hunicke (designer and producer on games including MySims & Boom Blox, currently working on Journey at thatgamecompany.)
- Frank Lantz (co-founder of crossmedia game company Area/Code, responsible for games like Drop7, Parking Wars and Spore Islands, and Director of the NYU Game Center.)
- Edmund McMillen (co-creator of IGF finalists Super Meat Boy, Coil.)
- Andy Nealen (Assistant professor of computer science at Rutgers University & core team member of Hemisphere Games, creators of the IGF award-winning Osmos.)
- Paolo Pedercini (game developer at Molleindustria [Every Day The Same Dream], artist and educator at the School of Art at Carnegie Mellon University.)
- Kris Piotrowski (co-founder & creative director at Capy, creators of games including Critter Crunch, Might and Magic: Clash of Heroes.)
- Petri Purho (designer of the IGF award winning Crayon Physics Deluxe
- Tommy Refenes (Team Meat engineer behind 2010 IGF Finalist Super Meat Boy.)
- Margaret Robertson (former editor of Edge Magazine and consultant, now designer and development director at Hide&Seek)
- Adam Saltsman (co-founder of Semi Secret Software, creators of Wurdle, Gravity Hook HD & Canabalt.)
- Andy Schatz (founder of Pocketwatch Games, creators of the IGF nominated Wildlife Tycoon: Venture Africa and the IGF award winning Monaco.)
- Mare Sheppard (co-founder of Metanet Software, creators of N.)
- Randy Smith (co-owner and designer at Tiger Style, creators of Spider: The Secret of Bryce Manor, former designer on the Thief series.)
- Steve Swink (co-founder, Enemy Airship, creators of the upcoming Shadow Physics.)
- Nathan Vella (co-founder & president of Capy, creators of Might & Magic: Clash of Heroes and IGF award winners Critter Crunch & Superbrothers: Sword & Sworcery EP.)
- Matthew Wegner (co-founder & CEO of Flashbang Studios, creators of Off-Road Velociraptor Safari, Minotaur China Shop & Time Donkey.)

The announcement is the final in a series revealing specific juries for each IGF Award, following the debut of the Nuovo Award jury, the Excellence in Audio jury, the Technical Excellence jury, the Visual Art jury, first newly integrated Mobile Game jury, and, most recently, the Excellence in Design jury, made up of independent game designers like Robin Hunicke, Gary Penn, George Fan and Kris Piotrowski.

All entries in the 2011 Independent Games Festival are currently browsable at the IGF's official site, where you can also find more complete biographical information on each of the juries.

All five Grand Prize finalists will be announced -- along with a jury statement detailing the thought process behind selecting its lineup -- on January 3rd, 2011. All finalists will be playable at the IGF Pavilion on the show floor during Game Developers Conference 2011, with the winner announced on the evening of March 2, 2011, at the IGF Awards, during the Game Developers Conference 2011.

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