Tencent’s GWB (Game Without Borders, not to be confused with ‘Gamers Without Borders’) competition, which aims to promote indie developers, opened registration for submissions on March 21.
Games submitted to this year’s competition will be judged by a panel of 47 developers, ‘scholars, and veteran gamers.’ Submissions will be judged based on their ‘gameplay creativity, narrative, art design, and social value.’ Awards include cash prizes (500,000 RMB for first prize) and, of course, exposure.
Tencent Institute of Games has held this indie games competition each year since 2016. In 2021, it attracted more than 2,470 entrants from 45 different countries. Word Game, which I wrote about recently, was last year’s big winner. Another notable winner in the ‘Best Music’ category from last year was The Rewinder, another Chinese game.
What I find particularly interesting is that this year has a separate ‘Social Value Prize’ (社会价值奖) for 300,000 RMB, which will be awarded to a game that ‘unearths the positive social value and practical potential of video games.’ This is not surprising for anybody who has noticed how proactive Tencent has been in enforcing recent government policies aimed at cracking down on games in the name of social good.
Registration for submissions will be open until June 20. Awards will be announced in early September during a live stream.