2020 Entry Qualification Question

I intend to enter a work of IF into IF Comp this year. I have a question regarding entry qualification for the game. The idea for my game was generated by the Facebook Zilf group and the Infocom Game Jam that is currently taking place. My game is being developed with Inform 6 for Z machine play as required by the Jam rules.

This game jam appears to be a very small jam with limited entries and participation. It will mostly be judged and evaluated by a group of senior writers.

I intend to have the game beta tested prior to entry but I am hoping to also receive feedback from the game jam participants.

Would this game still qualify for entry into IF Comp after participating in this Jam?

Thank you, Jeff

From what you describe, I’d say no: IFComp games are supposed to be unreleased prior to the competition. Is this a private jam, or open to the public? Will the games submitted to this jam be publicly available to people on Facebook? (If so, that’s released.) Will you specifically be able to name every person who has a copy of your game and is providing feedback? (If not, that’s released.)

Do contact the organizers though if you have questions. The email is ifcomp@ifcomp.org

1 Like

I think you have answered my question. I thought that may be the case.

Thank you, Jeff

1 Like

I was going to create a new topic, but if you don’t mind me hijacking this for a similar question (for next year’s comp):

All entries must be previously unreleased at the opening of judging.** By “unreleased”, we generally mean that a qualifying entry has never been widely distributed, sold, or made available for public play or download prior to the competition.

So, I understand what this is saying… however, is this talking specifically about the final product, or any stage of the product? The game I’m thinking about submitting has had a portion of it released here as a demo, but that’s only a small part of what I plan on the final game to be, and even the stuff that’s been released is going to be reworked. Is that still disqualified?

IntroComp specifically says that entering there disqualifies the finished game from IFComp, so…quite possibly? And the second and third question on the IFComp FAQ about Entering Games say that as well (emphasis mine)…

However, if the game was available on the public internet, where anyone could find and play it, then the IFComp considers that a release – even if the game wasn’t finished yet. This would be the case if, for example, you linked to the game from a public forum.

If you’ve already shown the work, whether in current or earlier form, in other festivals or competitions, then IFComp considers it an already-released work and therefore disqualified from entry.

1 Like

Oh! I didn’t even see that Q&A there. Oops. That clearly answers my question. Thanks!

Somewhat unexpectedly, translated works are considered brand new. So the way I interpret the rules, if you develop the game in one language, say French, you can get public feedback on the game logic, plot, and puzzles. Then you can translate it to English for the comp.


I see… :thinking:

Well, I hope everyone is fluent in pig latin.


I guess that’s a bit inconsistent, yeah.

The idea behind permitting translations (as I understand it) is that the IFComp audience is primarily English-speaking, so if a game has just been translated into English, the voters will never have played the original release.

Of course this is only approximately true.

1 Like

This is old news, and this is a tradition now. This is allowed to get new works in English. That is, the game is new for a new audience.

Also, the idea is to allow people to enter IFComp with their games. It is very difficult to localise a game to another language, So difficult that sometimes the other versions come in years since the first publication That is, it is highly improbable to publish one game one year, and in the same year to have it ready in English for the comp.

Also, it allows to receive works of other cultures in the community. So it improves the diversity of it.

1 Like

Well, I have opinions about this rule and I’ll be happy to discuss them after the comp.

For now, let me just clarify that I fully agree that translating is difficult work, a craft, and an art. I have the utmost respect for skilled translators.

1 Like

These are also good reasons!

I get that, but an English game isn’t allowed to be shared publicly and then enter IF Comp years later, right? That kind of invalidates this point.

(To be clear, I don’t really care either way. I’m just pointing out the logic flaw.)

It does not invalidate the point of summing up. If you remove that rule, you are just removing people from entering the comp. You even remove the motivation for them to localize the game.

Well, being unable to continue working on the demo that I already released also removes me from the competition.

I agree that translating is hard, but it’s not “writing a story and game code from scratch” hard, but yet that gets a free pass and my situation doesn’t. Oh, but if I had written the demo in Japanese instead of English, then it’d be acceptable.

Edit: My post sounds really bitter. I swear that I’m not. :sweat_smile: The rules just seem really… biased? I’m not sure that’s the right word. Either way, I’m not even really sure that I’m going to enter the competition next year. Having to scrap what I have and come up with something new really lowers the odds though.

1 Like

I think you need to ask the organisers of the comp, about your demo.

Ok, I see now that this has been answered by Josh. Yeah, definitively there’s a … something, here, not a bias, but a imbalance in the rules. Weird. I though Introcomp games were allowed to IFcomp. Weird, weird.

It’s not allowed, as John kindly answered here: 2020 Entry Qualification Question

That’s what my issue with it is.

A demo that’s maybe 10 - 25% of the game released in English: disqualified.

A game that is 100% completed in another language and submitted to another competition and then translated to English a year or more later: accepted.

It just seemed a bit unfair.

1 Like

I have a habit of taking speed-IF games I’ve made and working them up into full-sized games. Because they’re based on a previously released game they’re never eligible for competitions. Perhaps we should have an annual jam for remakes and completed demos.

I say a habit – I’ve done it twice. My usual hyperbole.


I believe the reason Introcomp games are not eligible for IFComp because a good portion of them already been judged. They are not new, debuting titles, which is one of the goals of IFComp: “new” games that people haven’t played before. These games would have an advantage from having already gotten major feedback from the IF community - essentially everyone publicly qualifies as having been a beta-tester.

A translation making a debut in a completely different language is being introduced to a new audience in a form they couldn’t play before and is therefore eligible.

That’s just my interpretation of the reasoning and is not official and may not be completely right.


The Spring Thing allows entries like that:

An extensively fleshed out version of a game prototyped in IntroComp or Ludum Dare would probably be cool;