I’ve been harboring such thoughts myself. Not so much changing the norms of existing Comps, because those are out of my purview, but maybe creating a year-end Comp that allows any game debuted in that calendar year to be submitted. The twist would be folks would submit their game for various Genre awards like, instead of the audience deciding whether a game is even in a specific genre, the author themselves submits their game into the ring for Horror or Comedy or Space Westerns or what have you. Then folks vote for their favorites. The difficulty would be preventing a rehash of the IFDB/XYZZY Awards and reinforcing this is more Author driven in terms of submissions and in which category a specific game is submitted. I dunno, there’s rough edges. Still workshopping it.
Just think it might be fun as some submissions might be surprising. “Oh, you want me to consider the humor in your Lovecraftian nightmare? Okay then.” Might cause folks to see titles in a new light.
I think IFComp during its inception [BWAAAAAH sound] was specifically designed to foster new works, and if I understand correctly, they also intended to encourage shorter more digestible games than the standard Infocom-epic that back in the day took weeks to complete before online hints. Hence the two-hour rule. And I’m sure also to prevent people from re-entering the same White Whale project over and over.
Me too. But a heavy hitter with a fantastic game could dominate EVERY comp if they could be submitted more than once, and that might overshadow newcomers and diamonds in the rough.
I think the way to get more attention is for everyone here to make a concerted effort to yell at everybody they can think of: reporters, game reviewers, game site admin, etc about the need to pay at least a little bit of attention to this niche. A little bit of publicity for any IF game is probably good for everybody. I know the big game review websites probably make money off of paying attention to well-known devs and lucrative games, but surely they could throw a little tiny bit of attention to niche gaming every once in a while.
I think all the competitions held throughout the year are a great way to encourage growth and keep the community we have thriving. And all these competitions are great vetting processing for highlighting the best of the best IF can offer. The real issue is that outside of these competitions there is no cohesive effort to promote. The XYZZY awards are considered the Oscar-Grammy-Tony’s of Interactive Fiction, but to be honest, it feels there is more buzz within each competition, then with any overall awards.
Just like we say, ooh that movie might win an Academy Award, there should be talk like, ooh, that entry might win a XYZy. Within the confines of each Comp, if you could click a button and say I nominate this one or that one, that would be nice. Maybe have a site with a running tally of XYZZY nominees or an awards category in this forum where the top games of the year can be discussed. So those that are interested have a singular place to go where they can view, d/l, and discuss them prior to voting.
Maybe it’s a pipedream. the more competitions, the merrier Each has its own niche. But every competition should link to something greater. A place to filter up where the best IF of the year can be showcased more prominently.
I agree with this as sometimes “updated games” are quite significant. For instance, a parser game might be resubmitted as a choice game or vice versa or an old series of games could be compressed into one big game with the less interesting parts removed and so on.
At the moment it is my impression that the Back Garden in Spring Thing may not be 100% open to this(?) but perhaps the rules could be loosened next year so that significantly changed or improved games (according to the author) can be submitted to the Back Garden without the risk of being disqualified for not being sufficiently different from an earlier game/version. If it turns out that the Back Garden drowns in small game updates (I doubt it) the rules could be tightened again the following year.
Thrilled to announce The Ca**yle G**up Capital Access Interactive Fiction Investment Trust Fund I, which will raise an initial equity round at $25M, using this money to invest in the creation of IF titles designed to do well at IFComp, from which a percentage royalty fee, based on a proprietary credit rating assigned based on an author’s Expected Placement Value (e.g. AAAmanda might pay out at a 6% cap rate but CC high-yield authors like Kaemi will pay out at a 68% cap rate), will be taken from IFComp proceeds and used to reinvest in other authors, until the fund date closes and we’ve won several IFComps and made billions.
Tsk. You’re thinking too small. How will the investment company buy a superyacht, which it absolutely needs if it wants to play at the big kids’ table, on the measly returns from such an impoverished start?
Seriously, though, why shouldn’t Comps give cash prizes? And why shouldn’t people who need or just want that money take it if they’re fortunate enough to win it? I can’t think of a single reason why this is injurious to the community or the integrity of the art form. I sell art for a living (kind of, when pandemics don’t shut everything down), and I am pretty stubborn about maintaining my vision instead of making crowd-pleasers, and there’s no cognitive dissonance for me in paying my electric bill, or buying something frivolous, with that money.
I was trying to think of a better term, like you broke up but are on friendly terms and considering getting back together. My initial impulse was BootyComp. Or Friends with benefits Comp… no, horrible. No. I know, I’ll do better in the future.
Seriously though, Text Adventure Literacy Jam 2023 has about US$350 in cash prizes, so you should all be working on a text adventure suitable for beginners, rather than all this frivolous chit chat. You can put your winnings towards that luxury yacht.
I am beginning to realise this from my first ‘spring thing’ entry this year! (wish I had seen this sooner ) - In my defence, other ‘life’ things got in the way - but really should have asked the community for help. I also think that, from the few people who have reviewed my game, diversity is the key. We all seem to have differed ‘ideas’ of how to tackle a problem in a game and the goal is to cover as many of these bases as possible.
From my point of view, this is exactly right. I like to have a lot of testers because each one tries things in a different way (maybe one tester closes every door after they go through, one types GET instead of TAKE, one tries to examine the location itself, etc.). It makes the game a lot better to have more testers since collectively they’ll try just about anything a general player will.