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Stray Gods crowned GOTY at 2023 Australian Game Developer Awards

The melodic fantasy adventure is Summerfall Studios' debut title.

Chris Kerr, News Editor

October 4, 2023

2 Min Read
Key artwork for Stray Gods featuring the game's cast of characters

Summerfall Studios' roleplaying musical Stray Gods was crowned Game of the Year at the 2023 Australian Game Developer Awards (AGDAs) in Melbourne.

The title won over a judging panel comprising over 80 industry experts, who felt it "set a benchmark" for music design in games. Stray Gods also took home the Excellence in Music and Accessibility awards, making it the biggest winner on the night.

"Stray Gods was a herculean effort from all involved, and we are deeply grateful to receive this award, and to the Australian game development community for all the support over the years,” said Liam Esler, managing director and co-founder of Summerfall.

"We’re thrilled with the response to the game. Thank you to our publisher, Humble Games, as well as the judges for all their work, and congratulations to all of the winners tonight."

Other notable winners include Gubbins by Studio Folly (Excellence in Sound Design), Moving Out 2 by SMG Studio (Excellence in Gameplay), and The Master's Pupil by Pat Naoum (Excellence in Art).

PlaySide Studios was named Studio of the Year for nurturing a strong culture among its 260 employees. The company, Australia's largest publicly listed independent game studio, was commended for establishing a mentorship program, allowing employees to work remotely, and taking steps to foster a diverse and equitable workplace.

Individual culture awards were also handed out to League of Geeks co-founder and director Trent Kusters, who took home the Adam Lancman Award in recognition of his continued support of the Australian games industry both locally and abroad.

Local industry advocates Dylan Bennett and Caitlin Lomax were joint recipients of The Empower Award, which aims to celebrate those who empower others across the industry to achieve their creative visions.

You can find the full list of AGDA winners below:

  • Game of the Year: Stray Gods: The Roleplaying Musical by Summerfall Studios

  • Excellence in art: The Master’s Pupil by Pat Naoum

  • Excellence in gameplay: Moving Out 2 by SMG Studio, Team17

  • Excellence in narrative: Amarantus by ub4q

  • Excellence in sound design: Gubbins by Studio Folly

  • Excellence in music: Stray Gods: The Roleplaying Musical by Summerfall Studios

  • Excellence in technical design: Phantom Abyss by Team WIBY

  • Excellence in accessibility: Stray Gods: The Roleplaying Musical by Summerfall Studios 

  • Excellence in emerging games: Partum Artifex by DalaKoala Games

  • Excellence in impactful games: Earthlingo by Earthlingo

  • Excellence in mobile games: My Little Pony: Mane Merge by Gameloft Brisbane

  • Excellence in AR/VR games: Espire 2: Stealth Operatives by Digital Lode Immersive Media

  • Excellence in ongoing games: Wylde Flowers by Studio Drydock

About the Author(s)

Chris Kerr

News Editor, GameDeveloper.com

Game Developer news editor Chris Kerr is an award-winning journalist and reporter with over a decade of experience in the game industry. His byline has appeared in notable print and digital publications including Edge, Stuff, Wireframe, International Business Times, and PocketGamer.biz. Throughout his career, Chris has covered major industry events including GDC, PAX Australia, Gamescom, Paris Games Week, and Develop Brighton. He has featured on the judging panel at The Develop Star Awards on multiple occasions and appeared on BBC Radio 5 Live to discuss breaking news.

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