This year’s Interactive Media Work Grants reflects the diversity and uniqueness of the Swiss creative industry with its growing scene of independent game studios that are showing ambition and maturity.
The jury was held online and was composed of the following experts: Marie Blondiaux, Dajana Dimovska, Elisa Mekler, Astrid Refstrup and Alberto Torgano.
They have selected projects that stand out for their artistic quality and originality of the themes, both relevant arguments when to find an international audience and partners in the global game industry.
Full line-up of awarded projects:
- [I] doesn‘t exist – Luzia Hüttenmoser and Anna-Lena Pontet
- Planks Builders – Diditopia Games
- Wild Planet – Lukyantsev Company
- Spirit – Momo-pi Game Studio
- Wéko The Mask Gatherer – Robin Haefeli and Simon da Silva
- Grimoire Groves – Stardust
- Backfirewall – Naraven Games
- The Wandering Village – Stray Fawn Studio
- Terraformers – Asteroid Lab
- Stonyville – Magic DAYW
- Moroi – Violet Saint
- Elementary Trolleyology – Twin Earth
- Henry Guardian of Nature – Inlusio Interactive
- Swordship – Digital Kingdom
The projects Stonyville and Spirit were recognized for their diversity and variety in storytelling, while Moroi and Grimoire Groves praised for their positive characteristics.
A notable aspect is the increasing composition of teams with a female majority or led by women, as in the game [I] doesn‘t exist, developed by duo Luzia Hüttenmoser and Anna-Lena Pontet. Their game consists in a modernized narrative adventure-puzzle, inviting the player to follow a visual but classic text adventure set in a wonderful forest.
Backfirewall by Naraven Games – another women-led studio – is a 3D graphic adventure with satiric and comic traits where the player plunges into the world of a phone operating system, takes the role of a hacker and in collaboration with an avatar tries to trigger a system update. The player wanders around the components of the phone, befriends apps and programs and gets their help to find the best ways to trigger system errors.
Terraformers by Asteroid Lab is an expansive colony builder game in which the player will live the fantasy of leading the first settlers on Mars. The core game loop includes exploring, managing the resources, spreading life and developing cities on the red planet. While discovering incredible landmarks players take decisions during impactful events, hire diverse leaders to receive support in their endeavour, trade valuable resources with Earth and discover a realistic vision of our future on Mars.