Submissions Documentation includes all of the materials in your submission that help us to understand your work before playing the game. Examples of documentation are your artistic statement, your team description, your game screen shots and video of a play through of the game. Because we do not have the resources to play each and every game submitted to our events (this is especially true of special format games), we rely heavily on documentation for the first phases of juror evaluation. Much like applying for an arts residency, documentation serves as the first impression of your work and a way for our jurors to get an understanding of the piece of art under consideration.
Your artistic statement communicates the inspiration and meaning in the work you have created. It is very important to our jurors as it conveys a good deal about the game under consideration, in terms of its creation and intended purpose in the world. This is not to say that all games (or works of art for that matter) must have a serious/social/political purpose (a game can be made simply for the sake of fun or beauty), but what matters most is simply that you clearly communicate the thought and meaning that has gone into your work. The strength of this statement helps separate our the games that move into the next phase of jurying.
First and foremost, we would like to stress the kind of videos that are NOT useful here. Please do NOT use Let’s Play Youtube style video documentation in your submission. It is too hard for the jurors to decipher what is going on and they cannot get a clear sense of your game from this kind of documentation. We also do NOT encourage a video taped reading of the rules for a game (such as the text of instructions for a table game . Video documentation that IS valuable includes:
- A (silent) video recording play-through of your game. (Do not set to music, other than the music that may be a part of the game. If composition accompanies the game, that may of course be included)
- You (the developer) talking through the design process (as a voice over), while we watch a direct (not a let’s play-style) video of your game being played (a run through). This is especially useful for special format games such as a table game or a Big Game. We watch the game being played in a timed manner with a voice over of the design process and steps we observe.
A sub committee of jurors will initially look at the entire documentation package for each and every submitted game for that year. Approximately a quarter of the games will be chosen from this initial round to go on to more rigorous assessment, which includes playing the game.
There are many online resources that show how to write an artistic statement, and you can find good silent play-throughs of games on Youtube.