Today we're excited to announce the artists, musicians and narrative experts who will be part of the jurying phase of the 2016 Independent Games Festival.
As always, these remarkable groups of game development experts are evaluating IGF 2016’s outstanding entries. Now that the first round of IGF judging by over 400 evaluators has been completed, these expert juries will ultimately determine the finalists and winners of the various IGF 2016 awards, which will be announced at the 2016 Game Developers Conference.
Following our earlier announcement of the Design, Student and Nuovo award juries, today we’re pleased to highlight the people who have volunteered their time and expertise to be a part of the juries for the Excellence in Audio Award, Excellence in Visual Art Award and Excellence in Narrative Award.
The Excellence in Audio Award
As always, the Excellence in Audio Award is intended to celebrate the best musical and sound innovation, quality, and impressiveness in independent gaming. This year the following jurors will decide who takes home the prize:
- Sarah Elmaleh, the actor/voiceover artist best known for voicing protagonist Katie in Gone Home. She can also be heard in games like Galak-Z, Redshirt, Gravity Ghost.
- Adam Hay, a musician who has spent 9 years as a game audio professional at studios around the UK, and most recently did audio design for Everybody's Gone To The Rapture.
- Darren Korb, best known for his work as audio director for Supergiant Games. His soundtracks for Transistor and Bastion have garnered dozens of industry accolades and awards.
- Daniel “C418” Rosenfeld, a video game composer, sound designer and producer. He is best known for working on Minecraft, the block-mining game selling copies to everyone on Earth.
- Laura Shigihara, who has done audio work for published games like Plants vs. Zombies, To the Moon, High School Story, World of Warcraft, and the PS4/Vita versions of Super Meat Boy.
The Excellence in Visual Art Award
The Visual Art award seeks to highlight the innovation and quality in visuals for independent games, and its jury for 2016 is made up of the following experts:
- Nils Deneken, Die Gute Fabrik founder and founding member of the Copenhagen Game Collective, is currently making Mutazione and previously worked on games like Where Is My Heart and BUTTON.
- Dorianne Dutrieux, a South African game developer, artist and illustrator. Her work includes QCF Design's IGF award-winning Desktop Dungeons and, most recently, Free Lives' Broforce.
- Jakub Dvorský, founder of Prague-based Amanita Design, the studio that created games like Machinarium, Botanicula and the Samorost series.
- Chandana Ekanayake, who serves as art director and game designer at Uber Entertainment currently working on Wayward Sky for PlayStation VR.
- Kelly Graham, a trained 2D commercial artist who has spent her time in the game industry helping to create games like Don't Starve and Mark of the Ninja with Klei Entertainment.
- Orsi Spanyol, who was largely responsible for creating the lush, colorful environments in Jonathan Blow's beautiful game The Witness, as well as some of the game's puzzles.
- Jesse "The Drawbarian" Turner, sole artist on the upcoming Viking Squad from Slick Entertainment. He also contributed to games like Shellrazer and IGF award finalist Crypt of the NecroDancer.
The Excellence In Narrative Award
The following jurors are among those chosen to decide IGF's Excellence in Narrative award, now in its fourth year, which recognizes innovation, quality and excellent storytelling in a game:
- Justin Amirkhani, creative director of Vagabond Dog, the studio responsible for award-winning Always Sometimes Monsters and the upcoming Sometimes Always Monsters.
- Kristina Drzaic, a narrative designer currently developing a project at Amazon Game Studios, is best known for her work on Halo 5: Guardians, Bioshock Infinite and Bioshock 2.
- Will O'Neill, the Festival Director of WordPlay and the writer/developer of Actual Sunlight, who is currently working on the upcoming Little Red Lie.
- Andrew Plotkin, a central figure of the interactive fiction community whose recent work, Hadean Lands, is a modern reconstruction of the classic puzzle-centric parser-based text adventure.
- Emily Short, creative director on the Versu project, one of the team behind the Inform tool for interactive fiction, and the author of over two dozen works of interactive fiction.
All entries in the 2016 Independent Games Festival are currently browsable at the official IGF website.
Competition finalists will be announced early next year, with the winners announced on the evening of March 16th at the live-streamed IGF Awards ceremony during GDC 2016.
GDC 2016 itself will take place March 14-18th at the Moscone Center in San Francisco. For more information on GDC 2016, visit the show's official website, or subscribe to regular updates via Facebook, Twitter, or RSS.
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