- Festival Submissions Are Now Open -

They say when one door closes another one opens. This year’s situation has inspired new thinking about our Fall Festival. We know that we want to reach more people, on more continents, and tear down financial barriers to so many who wish to participate. We do not yet know if we will be able to also get people together in person, but we do know we can create a significant event. This year seems to us like an opportunity to try something creative and expansive, and to make a much larger impact.

And so we are announcing a reconfigured IndieCade Festival. IndieCade’s 2020 flagship gathering will be a multi-day celebration of innovation and innovators, of fresh new games and their creators, of new connections and old, of coming together as a community and welcoming so many new voices, friends, partners, creators, supporters, and enthusiasts.

October 16 - October 24: IndieCade Anywhere and Everywhere
Submissions for IndieCade are now open, and given the worldwide situation we have extended our early submission rate through May 1st.

As always - IndieCade welcomes a wide spectrum of games and experiences — regardless of platform, style, experience, or background, and we especially encourage work-in-progress, as well as, completed projects. See details below.

Submission Process Overview:
1 - Complete your online application.
2 - Choose the events to which you're submitting to and pay the processing fee (there is no additional charge this year).
3 - All teams who submit to IndieCade will receive complimentary passes to the Festival’s Developer Summit (IndieXchange) and an opportunity to showcase at our GameTasting (show-and-tell).

2020 Submission Deadlines & Fees :
(Extended) Early Submission Period: Closes May 1st 11:59PM PDT (GMT -7) - $75
Regular Submission Period: Closes June 1st 11:59PM PDT (GMT -7) $100

For even more submission discounts and other benefits, please consider an IndieCade Membership!


IndieCade 2020 Festival

October 16 - October 24: IndieCade Anywhere and Everywhere

Submissions open between April 1st and June 1st.
Proposed schedule:
October 16/17 - in-person* and virtual opening celebration in Paris, France
October 17-23 - virtual worldwide event featuring all nominated games, sessions, and more
October 23/24- in-person* and virtual closing celebration in Santa Monica, California USA

* In-person subject to our ability to bring people together safely and joyously.

Submission Benefits

What you get for Submitting:
  • All entries are reviewed by our jury and considered for the chosen events.
  • All team members receive complimentary invitations to attend the Festival's Developer Summit (IndieXchange). (Note: This is a far better benefit this year since in previous years you had to be in Los Angeles!)
  • Opportunity to participate in our signature GameTasting (show-and-tell) (Note: This is a first-come/ first-serve opportunity.)
  • Members: Along with other benefits, members may also opt to receive written or personal feedback on your game submission. (You can find more information about membership HERE).

What you get if you are Selected:
  • All selections are eligible for IndieCade's Awards. (A full description of the awards can be found HERE)
  • All selections will receive an official Nominee IndieCade Seal.
  • VIP passes for your full team to all events for which you are selected, including access to the Awards.
  • All selections will be featured and highlighted throughout the week to the entirety of the IndieCade audience and participants via an amplified web presence, direct media promotion, curated narrations, and more.
  • All selections will be receive PR game promotion including pre and post event releases and media outreach, on-site PR, and award winners will be included in a digital press conference activity.
  • All selections will be promoted, featured, mentioned, via IndieCade’s social, traditional, and on-line channels including a game profile on IndieCade’s website and official wiki, and IndieCade’s far-reaching newsletter.
  • Team members from all selections will be immediately entered into the Festival Developer Summit (IndieXchange), including developer networking.
  • Selection teams will have the opportunity to request from a menu of specific customized meetings with (as available) various funders, publishers, partners, play testers, and more.
  • Additional benefits: Opportunity to showcase at the in-person events for IndieCade Festival in Paris/Europe and Santa Monica/ US for no additional materials fees, should those events take place this year. This includes badges for the team, appropriate booth space, standard furniture (tables/chairs), and electrical.

For any submissions related questions email us at 

Early Submissions Fee:
  • We have extended the early submissions through May 1st and we are not charging for multiple events this year. $75
Regular Submissions Fee:
  • We will accept regular submissions through June 1st and we are not charging for multiple events this year. $100

The Jurying Process:
All submissions are reviewed by a diverse jury of leaders from the games industry, academia, fine arts, and indie development for placement & award nominations at IndieCade Festival. You can learn all about how how jurying process works HERE.

More Events:
All games submitted are eligible to be selected for any of our Alumni, Annex, and other showcases and events throughout the year. 

IndieCade staff always ask for permission before showcasing a game. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Fee Assistance

IndieCade is a small, independently-run organization which relies on submission fees to maintain and administer our jurying process. However, we do provide full and reduced submission fee assistance to developers who would not otherwise be able to afford our submission fees. We are also delighted to receive contributions to this scholarship fund. Learn more about the program and how to apply HERE. Please note that the scholarships are only for the submissions processing fee and not for any related travel or expenses.

Do we still get written feedback for our submissions?

Due to the large increase in volume of submissions over the past years, we can no longer accommodate written feedback for all submissions at the quality level we feel is ideal. We are now providing feedback via our membership program. For more information see our MEMBERSHIP PAGE.

May I update my application once submitted?

No, you cannot edit your application form once it has been submitted. There is some leniency if your form has broken download links or expired coupon codes, and IndieCade staff will contact you if your entry has such. Additionally, should you be selected to showcase at any of our events, you are more than welcome to bring an updated build and provide new materials for media (screenshots, videos, copy, etc.).

If you are concerned about a bug in your submission or have made a major technical advance that may assist in the jurying of your game you may email for consideration for updating your build, but there are no guarantees of accommodation of said build due to the fast nature of the jurying process.

Who reviews the IndieCade submissions?

IndieCade has a rigorous jury process based on standard academic review practices. Multiple rounds of review occur, engaging both the JURY COMMITTEE and the general JUROR pool. It is key that the DOCUMENTATION in your submission is as thorough as you can make it, as this will be what is reviewed by the first round of the jury process.

We guarantee that every game is reviewed by a jury committee member in the first round, as well as being assigned to the general juror pool for play. Some entries then go on to be further assigned to a review/ super juror who provides an additional review for that submission.

Can I enter more than one project?

Absolutely! You may enter as many as you like. However, each work requires its own submission information in order to be juried as its own game. (Note: you will need to pay separately for each entry you submit.)

If you have a series of short games, you may submit those as one entry, but realize they will also be reviewed as a single entry.

Do you have prizes?

Each IndieCade Award-winning game receives a handmade, one-of-a-kind trophy specifically designed for each awardee. IndieCade does not provide traditional prizes or cash for award winners. That said, accepted Finalists and Official Selections do receive a number of added benefits, including two VIP Passes to the event in which they are exhibiting, access to private IndieCade social events, features and promotions across our website and social media, passes to our IndieXchange pre-Festival developer summit, use of a display booth at the selected event, and inclusion in all press releases, publicity work, and more. Additionally IndieCade provides an in-house publicist and premiere opportunities for all of our events.

What if my submission is installation, location, or event based?

Our evaluation system has a feature that allows you to include events and venues where your submission has been or will be shown. This will enable us to match your entry with jurors who have attended, or will attend, these events or venues and have played it in its full form. We may also ask you to stage a session of your entry, bring your entry to one of our special jurying sessions, or provide instructions and/or materials for jurors to run a session themselves.

Please note that in some cases, such as event-based or installation works, your entry may be reviewed ONLY on the DOCUMENTATION in your submission form if we cannot find suitable jurors in the area.

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Are you an IndieCade Alumnus? We want to know! If you've been a speaker, organizer, juror, or presented your game at IndieCade or any IndieCade-related showcase (ex. IndieCade @ E3, IndieCade @ SIGGRAPH, etc. - doesn't need to have been a finalist) we'd like to be in touch.