IGF official selection

The shortlist for the Independent Games Festival has been revealed. The good news is that our entry FATALE was not selected and so we don’t have to go through Homeland Security Fun Park San Francisco in Spring. The bad news is that the selection is rather… boring? Only a few noteworthy games were selected. I guess this confirms Derek Yu’s observation that 2009 was a slow year for indie games. Good thing my New Year’s Resolution includes a goodbye to games (*). Otherwise, I think I’d be sort of… upset?

(*) blog post to follow soon

26 thoughts on “IGF official selection”

  1. Either video games aren’t what they used to be, or I’m not what I used to be. I can’t entertain myself with games the way I used to…I’m thinking that comes with age. And it may not be a bad thing.

  2. I think I feel the same, Anomalous. I’ve had high hopes for videogames for years now and for a while it seemed like they could evolve. But that while is like five years ago now. Maybe I have changed in that time. But videogames definitely have not.

  3. Videogames have changed, but in the other direction.

    The problem with IGF is, that the Indie scene (if there is one) seems to be defined by business aspects. There needs to be a strong and powerful festival about art games/ experimental games or another platform to push these games. You at Tale of Tales have proved that there is a demand for these kind of games. It would be sad if you quit now.

  4. But the IGF has the Nuovo Award for art games. That should be good enough. It’s for games that are art.

    Personally, I prefer my games without art, thank you very much. And I like art that isn’t enslaved by game formalities.

    I still believe the interactive medium will be the medium for the new century. I just don’t believe anymore that this medium will grow out of games.

  5. Thank God we’ve got Trauma. And Limbo, it’s so nice to see it’s still alive. I’ve been waiting to play it for over two years.

    Which reminds me: when you said you tried The Night Journey, Michaël, on what platform was it running and what sort of control pad did you use? I forgot to ask that back when you told me about it – better yet, I was feeling too envious to think clearly 😉

  6. I played it on PC. With a Logitech gamepad.

    “Trauma” and “Limbo”… Interesting titles to represent the last shreds of hope in videogames… Good thing they didn’t add “Lose/Lose” or “Fatale” to that list. HAHAHA! Though “Amnesia” would have been very suitable!…

  7. Meanwhile, “Fragile” is the only big commercial game that really has my interest at the moment… It’s kind of funny!

    I still expect to see some overlap between art and games. As long as games continue to be produced, it seems inevitable that the two collide somewhere down the line. The problem right now seems to be too many games in which the art is held hostage by the game, and a culture that… I don’t even know how to phrase it nicely, “celebrates banality?” There’s an oversaturation (shut up, Spell Check) of the same handful of visual/narrative cliches, and I half believe most developers have forgotten anything else is possible.

    In a lot of ways, “game” is an unfortunate name for this medium, and a deliberate distancing from the word and the culture can’t be too bad.

    I thought you were already doing that, though, so now I’m all curious.

  8. Well, we were doing that in practice, yes. But in theory, in ideals and dreams, we have always been hopeful that something beautiful would grow out of videogames. I think it is time to abandon that hope now. The games culture is far too pleased with itself. It wants to remain a negligible niche. But I prefer not to be stuck in it. As a bonus the distance will allow me to stop nagging about how awful games are. I will simply not care anymore. I think games and I will get along much better that way. :)

  9. @ Michaël

    I think FATALE would not be suited for the IGF festival: while it’s true that it is very “I”, it fails to enter the “G” category in full. Which is to say, from a different perspective, that the award giving society isn’t ready for it – yet.

  10. I admire you’re still saying “yet”. According to me, they’ve had enough time. I’m not going to waste my life trying to move people where they don’t want to go. If they are happy where they are, fine. Let them. Bye bye.

  11. I only used “yet” in order to remind how being pessimistic regarding the emergence of different digital cultures won’t make anything better. I’m sorry. I now see that wasn’t sensitive enough to understand how disappointed you were about not having been nominated :(

    All I meant to say was that when you do something so genuine and original it might take some time before the conservative institutions begin to change. I know chances are slim, yes. And I grieve over that, too. It wasn’t always like this, I think.

    Remember the Milia D’Or awards? They used to prize innovations in multimedia works back in the 1990’s. I think Fatale would have been a sure Milia D’Or winner had it been released back then. Plus, it was hosted in a real city: Cannes. Ooh la la 😉

  12. Haha. No no, this doesn’t have anything to do with Fatale. Don’t worry. I completely agree with your point -I just don’t agree with your patience. And I guess I agree with “their” point too. They like games to be games. Why would we want to change that? Why can’t we simply go and play somewhere else?

  13. The title of your company is Tale of Tales…so tell *stories* using the medium, and break free from the game structure.

    As you know, Dear Ester is an interesting story (well, people are using the term “interactive story” because they can’t think of a better phrase) that uses the medium, but it is also trapped in the Half Life structure (being a mod). If something can work so well within the structure, think of what you can do when you break from it.

    That’s probably already where you’re going, but I thought I’d mention it. I’d love a collection of old European folk takes told in the medium, or one long “journey” or odyssey maybe with different “installments”. People download movies and TV shows, so I can’t see them passing up on interactive stories (gotta think of a more accurate phrase than “interactive stories”).


  14. hello michael.
    I have to disagree with you in your angriness instinct but I understand it.
    Your games like for example “The path” i will try for example to people that were in some sort of depression,suffering or high emotional falling.The rest of the people can’t see this.Usually those emo or fucked up teenagers that now are on the big list of this decade human society problems usually don’t win in usual society rules..They don’t win in school (bad marks usually), they don’t win socially (people usually kick them instantly or ignore them or make them feel very isolated), they have usually problems with their families.So basically they are removed from normal way of raising and they find their survival in things that other people will never experience.This people unfortunetly are so discouraged in society they usually stay home in their silence,…Everyone is in their cave..This game imo is targeted very nice to this kind of people..They are rarely united, everyone with his/her suffering..
    You must understand that someone need to feed this souls that their soroundings don’t bring.As an irony talking indirectly about their pain (the teenager play the video game) is a way to make them not suicide tommorow.If you put a teenager like this to open to a human being like they open to a game like “The path” it will need much much more time..There will be big defensive walls between the teenager and the person that ask him/her.Your game is an indirect therapy and this way is amazingly tackled..You put flowers and sun shafts in a beautiful fiorest where a very depressed teenager walk is like showing to all that even in this bottom of their suffering you can combine very dark with big shine stuff.Is a perfect blend that psychologist seems to never understand…Half of his world with a beautifull … Their mind will gaze and say in subconscious…. IS POSIBLE..
    You have an invisible public… but expect a revolution and a spark for this people to go out from their cavern…

  15. Thanks for the support, Christopher. Indeed, thinking outside of the games box is very liberating!

    Hey, badsykes, don’t worry. We’re on a path towards higher productivity and better experiences. When we lose the constraints of games, we’ll only make better hangouts for the crippled and the miserable, the hermits and the outcasts. :)

  16. You’re right, I am very patient. I won’t lie: I enjoy these things above anything else in my life – for some reason- but I also like to think that I can find pleasure in other pursuits, namely the arts. And you know how I always turn to the past glories of this our digital age whenever times are tighter. Now that I mention it, I’ve been doing quite a lot of that lately… 😉

    I remember how fascinated you were about Assassin’s Creed 2 (that preview post you wrote stands as witness!). Did you ever get to play it?

  17. Not yet. I wasn’t very excited by the propaganda. They seem to have focussed on the aspects of the first game that I liked the least (combat and quests). I’ll probably have a look at it at some point. But I’m not in a hurry.
    I hope they have a “tourism mode” or something. I do hate having to kill kill kill and get stupid rewards all the time.

  18. Well, you’re in for a major disappointment, then. I forgive them everything except the dishonouring characterization of Leonardo Da Vinci.

  19. You’re very forgiving, dieubussy. 😉

    Ilya, Fatale is an experiment on its own. We know it’s more “radical” than The Path. But it wasn’t exactly a goodbye. More like a test.

  20. I forgive because I know those creators at Ubisoft couldn’t do any better than that even if they had mystic inspiration from the Lord almighty. Such game design practices are so deeply rooted within them that it’s a part of their identity.

    More like a test? Sounds like a “the best is yet to come”.

  21. first, sorry for the bad english..
    Tale of Tales are one of the fews that still makes me think of games like an possible art medium, if you guys stop just right now I guest a huge part of the people that really studies games and art will fall down. Even the indie scene isn’t so exciting anymore, seens like everyone is going to the wrong way, and I feel too your desappointment or something like that.
    But, I guess and hope that this is because of the slow year we have in 2009, not only on indie games, but in pure art, movies and even music, it was a very slow year. If you take a look on what’s coming for 2010 I hope you’ll be a little more exciting and get some hope like I am, talking of games, there’s a lot of good things coming on the mainstream, like The Last Guardian and even Mafia 2, Max Payne 3, games that in the older versions had go a litte far from the same thing, and have made some people think and feel, and of course Heavy Rain from the producer of Farenheit, that I’m really betting that is going to shake things up and bring a lot of new costumers for the games that are more interesting in the stories and the felling then killing monsters and raise up level, so I hope that will be a year to make people see that you can do that in the mainstream so of course you can do that in the indie scene and there will be people to look and enjoy and support. People that begining to play games when children, when it becomes worldwide pop are growing up. So if you guys are really thinking on leave the video games, I hope you give it one more chance.

  22. We are not planning to stop! Quite the contrary. My New Years Resolutions are all about increasing our productivity (and that of others).

    Instead of hoping for the audience to come to videogames, we want step towards them and create interactive entertainment that is accessible and interesting to people other than gamers too.

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