GameplayComp

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(Last in a series of six minicomps for 2009: SimComp, EnvComp, AbilityComp, NPCComp, SenseComp and GameplayComp).

The aim of GameplayComp (organised by David Fisher) is to create a game which explores non-traditional forms of gameplay while still remaining IF.

"Gameplay" refers to the major activities of the game -- what the game is all about doing; how the player makes progress. The gameplay in traditional IF is usually focused on puzzles. Compare this to something like Pac Man, where the gameplay is all about eating dots and avoiding / capturing enemies.

One form of non-traditional gameplay is a focus on combat (see the IFDB "puzzle combat" list for examples). Some other possibilities include:

  • An IF treatment of a board or video game genre (eg. "trading", "civilisation", "platformer").
  • A card game set in a saloon, where standard IF activities are interwoven with the card game.

See the following RAIF thread for more thoughts on non-standard gameplay in IF:

http://groups.google.com/group/rec.arts.int-fiction/browse_thread/thread/f01bd4087bb7d421

Entries

There was only one entry:

Dates

  • June 15th, 2009: competition officially begins (though there is no rule against starting early!)
  • September 15th, 2009: submission deadline (midnight GMT).
  • November 20th, 2009: the results were announced.

Rules

1. Entries must be in English.

2. Entries are not restricted to any particular IF language or platform, but it is highly recommended that a portable IF language be used (such as Inform 6/7, TADS 2/3, Hugo, Adrift, etc.). Judges will only be required to play games that they can run on their system. In the unlikely event that a game cannot be run by any of the judges, it will not receive a score.

3. The game length should be roughly one to two hours.

4. A walkthrough must be submitted with the game (to make sure the judges can complete it!). If you do not want the walkthrough to be publicly released, please write "Not for public release" at the top.

5. Works must not have been previously released, or include copyrighted material without permission from the copyright holder.

6. A panel of approximately ten judges will score and write a review of each game that they are able to run on their system. Public discussion of games during the judging period is permitted (including authors and testers), but judges' scores and reviews will not be published until they are all ready.

7. The results will be announced when all of the judges have completed their judging; there is no time limit, but the judging period will probably be less than two weeks.

8. By submitting an entry to this competition, authors implicitly give permission for their entries to be uploaded to the IF Archive.

9. Any number of entries from the same author are permitted.

10. Remember to allow time for Beta testing! If English is not your native language, people are available to proofread your game as well (ask on the rec.arts.int-fiction or rec.games.int-fiction newsgroup).

Judging

The judges were Victor Gijsbers, Christopher Huang, Jimmy Maher, Mark Musante, and Aaron Reed.

Jon Ingold, Jason Dyer, Stephen Granade, Adam Thornton, and Duncan Stevens were also supposed to be judges, but didn't write any reviews.

Judges may not also be Beta testers or enter a game in the competition they are judging.

Guidelines for Judges

The main judging criteria are:

(1) Is this a good game? How does it rate compared to the other entries?

(2) Does the game still remain "IF" despite the non-standard gameplay?

(3) How well does the non-standard gameplay function within the game?

When your reviews and scores are ready, please send them to davidfisher@australiaonline.net.au. Feel free to make your reviews available anywhere else as well, but not until the competition results have been announced.

Scores range from 1 to 10, with 10 being the highest. Half-point scores are permitted, eg. 9.5. The scores assigned by each judge to each game will be made public; if you would prefer your scores to be anonymous, let me know and we will work out some way to do that.

Games should be played until you feel you can give them a fair score and a full review; feel free to use walkthroughs if necessary to see the whole game. Reviews and scores are not required for games which you cannot run on your system.

Submissions

Entries should be sent to davidfisher@australiaonline.net.au any time between the starting date (June 15th 2008) and the deadline of September 15th 2009, midnight GMT. Remember to include a walkthrough with your game.

Since the main aim is to produce new games rather than to be bureaucratic, if any author requires a (small!) extension to the deadline, please contact the organiser at davidfisher@australiaonline.net.au.

If there are problems with a game that require it to be re-submitted during the judging period, that will be permitted as well, but the scoring penalty for doing so will be at the judges' discretion.

Links

Reviews