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What makes a game good? or bad? or better?

Watch specially selected speakers as they play IndieCade finalist games live at IndieCade, discussing the gameplay experience along with the game desisgners.

These "screenings" are based on the Well Played books and journal from ETC Press and the success of past years' sessions. These sessions are curated by Drew Davidson, author of Well Played and drector Entertainment Technology Center at Carnegie Mellon University.

Screening sessions take place Saturday October 5th between 10 am - 5 pm in the Festival Sessions B.

Well Played Screening I

All Access Pass Festival Plus Pass Saturday, October 5, 10am - 11am, Festival Sessions B

Game: Gone Home created by The Fullbright Company
Presenter: Porpentine with creator Steve Gaynor
Gone Home is a Story Exploration Video Game. It takes place in an American household in 1995. You return home from a year abroad expecting your family to be there to meet you, but something's not right. Where is everybody, and what happened here? Gone Home is a pure exploration experience with no combat or puzzles. Investigate clues woven throughout a deeply interactive house to discover the story of the people who lived there. Dig deeper. Go home again. Gone Home is meant to give the player complete freedom to explore a mysterious environment at their own pace, discovering and piecing together the story entirely from the notes and artifacts they find. By uncovering what the family has left behind, the player gets to know who they are and what lives they lead. Though no characters are ever onscreen, the player forms an empathetic connection with the people who lived here. The game has received accolades for its progressive themes and sophisticated storytelling. Gone Home illustrates that the adventure game genre is alive and well and continuing to evolve at the hands of indie developers.

Well Played Screening II

All Access Pass Festival Plus Pass Saturday, October 5, 11:30am - 12:30pm, Festival Sessions B

Game: Kentucky Route Zero created by Cardboard Computer
Presenter: Simon Ferrari with creators Jake Elliott and Tamas Kemenczy
Kentucky Route Zero is a magical realist adventure game about a secret highway in the caves beneath Kentucky, and the mysterious folks who travel it. Gameplay is inspired by point-and-click adventure games, but focused on characterization, atmosphere and storytelling rather than clever puzzles or challenges of skill. Kentucky Route Zero leverages its environment and aesthetics to tell an affecting and compelling story in a way unlike other games.

Well Played Screening III

All Access Pass Festival Plus Pass Saturday, October 5, 1:30pm - 2:30pm, Festival Sessions B

Game: Dog Eat Dog created by Liwanag Press
Presenter: Naomi Clark with creator Liam Liwanag Burke
Dog Eat Dog is a tabletop roleplaying game of colonialism and its consequences. As a group, you work together to describe one of the hundreds of small islands in the Pacific Ocean, defining the customs of the natives and the mores of the outsiders arriving to claim it. One player then assumes the role of the Occupation force, while the others play individual Natives. Dog Eat Dog imaginatively uses social play and storytelling rules to explore unequal power relationships and the exercise of colonial power.

Well Played Screening IV

All Access Pass Festival Plus Pass Saturday, October 5, 3pm - 5pm, Festival Sessions B

And this year, we have two special sessions, with Nick Fortugno and anna anthropy, focused on the purpose and value of Well Played and critique.