The Independent Games Festival (IGF), held every spring at the Game Developers Conference (GDC) in San Francisco, is a celebration of the independent spirit. It’s both a gauge of the cutting edge in game design as well as an increasingly popular event among gamers of all stripe.
This year, the list of nominees for the awards contains a veritable boat-load of games that are available on iOS or Mac. It’s a who’s-who of the hot new games tat everyone’s talking about as well as a notice that mobile gaming is definitely on the map.
There’s the slick new interactive fiction of Simogo’s iOS-only Device 6, nominated for Excellence In Visual Art, Excellence In Narrative, Excellence in Audio, as well as the big award, the Seumas McNally Grand Prize, named after a previous grand prize winner who passed away in 2000.
Deirdra Kiai’s iPad-only Dominique Pamplemousse in “It’s All Over Once the Fat Lady Sings!” is a musical detective story that explores themes of gender roles. It has been nominated for Excellence In Narrative, Excellence In Audio, The Nuovo award for innovation in gaming, and the Seumas McNally Grand Prize, too.
Mac gamers aren’t left out of the proceedings, either. The uniquely creepy Don’t Starve, from Klei Productions, is a current favorite of my son and I, as we log hours in the weird survival and crafting game. The Mac version is on Steam, and it’s well worth a purchase. It’s nominated for the Grand Prize and Excellence in Design awards, as well as a runner up in the Audio and Visual Art categories.
Lucas Pope’s empathy game, Papers, Please, nominated for Narrative, Design, Nuovo, and Grand Prize categories, brings home the soul-crushing nature of a job processing passports and civil service in general, with a Mac version of the dystopian document thriller available from the game’s website.
There’s plenty more to celebrate, too, with a full list at the IGF website. Be sure to keep an eye on our coverage of GDC in March, when we’ll be sure to announce the winners.