XYZZY Awards 2011: a temporary fix

Oh well.

I shall abandon this account, then, with its epic posting history and all the good reputation I have built up over my 6 (make that 7 now) posts that have – dare I say it – shaped this forum like none other. It is, unfortunately, not possible to change one’s nick. If such a feat should be deemed doable by a moderator without throwing the database into disarray, I humbly request a change.

I shall spend the next three years in deep lurker-mode while I contemplate and research possible new nicks. Three years seems appropriate given the fact that it took me about that long to come up with “Matt W” and sign up in the first place.

Do not miss me too much. Fare well, fellow interactive fictioneers.


Actually, this is a really good point. What if the first-round nomination process for XYZZYs was more involved? If you had to rank or score every game you’d played, that would add a slightly higher barrier of entry and, more importantly, help convey the idea that voters are supposed to carefully consider comparisons between a decent number of the eligible entrants.

Whoa, is there some story about SA LPers?

No; this is purely hypothetical. IF gets played on the SA forums with some frequency, and a number of current and former IF-community folks are Goons. I have no idea whether SA culture would make this possible or even likely, but it does represent a large, energetic community that has the potential to flood the XYZZYs for their own reasons.

IIRC, both David Whyld and David Welbourne have used variations on “davidw”, though at different locations.

And, after checking, KS was actually released in 2012. Will it be eligible for next year’s XYZZYs?

I don’t see any particular reason why it should be, when the great bulk of visual novels, hobbyist and commercial, are not.

The XYZZYs don’t attempt to include every CYOA published in the previous year. That would be a gigantic task. Rather, it includes such CYOA as falls within the general orbit of the IF world. What exactly that constitutes is a judgement call; the ChoiceScript games are in there largely because Choice of Games has a decent relationship with the IF world.

(So, if we thought that the ChoiceScript community were actually a bunch of evil awards-hijacking trolls, and that the IF community had zero interest in Choice of the Wotsit or ChoiceScript, the long-term solution would be very simple: don’t add ChoiceScript games to the list any more.)

Is the list really the final word on what game is eligible for the awards? I thought it was more of a guideline than a rule, hence the suggestion for voters to add games they’ve played.

No, it’s not. It’s difficult to catch every game in the world, and is likely to become increasingly so as IF inveigles itself into more and more obscure corners of the Internet. Similarly, things can get taken off the list if someone points out that they’re ineligible (usually because they were published in the wrong year.) But things don’t automatically go on the list just because someone suggested them – except in the Technological Development and Supplemental Materials categories, because we don’t compile a list for that.

So, yeah, if one or two people suggested that we put Katawa Shoujo on the list, I think that there’d be a bit of discussion among the organisers that would probably lead to us not adding it – not because I don’t think it’s a sophisticated bit of CYOA design, but because, in purely social terms, it’s a totally different thing. IF and VNs have overlapped somewhat in the past and could conceivably do so again and to a greater degree, but right now that’s not the case.