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The judges for the 2016 edition of the Independent Games Festival Awards have revealed their list of chosen finalists. This year saw more than 750 entries for the awards, and those entries were initially judged by over 400 evaluators before being handed to a panel of expert judges from across the games industry.

The winners of the various categories will receive over $50,000 in prizes, while the Seumas McNally Grand Prize winner will bag a cool $30,000. The 18th annual IGF is set to take place on the 16th of March and will be hosted by Nathan Vella, president of Capybara Games (they of Superbrothers: Sword & Sworcery).

The full list of games in each category (along with a few honourable mentions) is below.

Excellence in Visual Art

  • Mini Metro (Dinosaur Polo Club)
  • Panoramical (Fernando Ramallo & David Kanaga)
  • Gnog (KO_OP)
  • Armello (League of Geeks)
  • Oxenfree (Night School Studio)
  • Darkest Dungeon (Red Hook Studios Inc.)

Honourable mentions: Forkride Grilltime Sloth (Black Pants Game Studio [Sebastian Stamm]); Epistory – Typing Chronicles (Fishing Cactus); Kingdom (noio & Licorice); Alto’s Adventure (Snowman); Future Unfolding (Spaces of Play); Astroneer (System Era Softworks)

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Excellence in Narrative

  • The Beginner’s Guide (Everything Unlimited Ltd.)
  • Black Closet (Hanako Games)
  • That Dragon, Cancer (Numinous Games)
  • Her Story (Sam Barlow)
  • Undertale (Toby Fox)
  • The Magic Circle (Question)

Honourable mentions: Oxenfree (Night School Studio); Orion Trail (Schell Games); Cibele (Star Maid Games); Contradiction  (Tim Follin / Baggy Cat Ltd); The Writer Will Do Something (Tom Bissell and Matthew S. Burns)

Excellence in Design

  • Mini Metro (Dinosaur Polo Club)
  • Kingdom (noio & Licorice)
  • Her Story (Sam Barlow)
  • Keep Talking & Nobody Explodes (Steel Crate Games)
  • Superhot (SUPERHOT)
  • Infinifactory (Zachtronics)

Honourable mentions: Gang Beasts (Boneloaf); Imbroglio (Michael Brough); Duskers (Misfits Attic); Chaos Reborn (Snapshot Games); TIS-100 (Zachtronics); Soft Body (Zeke Virant)

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Excellence in Audio

  • Mini Metro (Dinosaur Polo Club)
  • Panoramical (Fernando Ramallo & David Kanaga)
  • That Dragon, Cancer (Numinous Games)
  • Darkest Dungeon (Red Hook Studios Inc.)
  • Lumini (Speelbaars)
  • Undertale (Toby Fox)

Honourable mentions: Heart Forth, Alicia (Alonso Martin); The Beginner’s Guide (Everything Unlimited Ltd.); Gnog (KO_OP); Oxenfree (Night School Studio); Kingdom (noio & Licorice); Inside My Radio (Seaven Studio)

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Nuovo Award

  • The Beginner’s Guide (Everything Unlimited Ltd.)
  • Panoramical (Fernando Ramallo & David Kanaga)
  • Fantastic Contraption (Northway Games & Radial Games)
  • Orchids To Dusk (Pol Clarissou)
  • Her Story (Sam Barlow)
  • Cibele  (Star Maid Games)
  • Keep Talking & Nobody Explodes (Steel Crate Games)
  • Progress (Tim Garbos, Martin Kvale and Joel Nyström)

Honourable mentions: Enough (cabbibo); Sentree (Glitchnap); Affordable Space Adventures (KnapNok Games and Nifflas’ Games); Vignettes (Pol Clarissou, Armel Gibson); Future Unfolding (Spaces of Play); Sage Solitaire (Zach Gage); TIS-100 (Zachtronics)

Best Student Game

  • Pitfall Planet (Bonfire Games)
  • Ape Out (Gabe Cuzzillo)
  • Beglitched (Jenny Jiao Hsia & Alec Thomson)
  • Circa Infinity (Kenny Sun)
  • Orchids To Dusk (Pol Clarissou)
  • Chambara (team ok)

Honourable mentions: Anarcute (Anarteam); Gathering Sky (A Stranger Gravity); Not Everything is Flammable (DAM: David Shiyang Liu, Alex Hu and Mac Lotze); FAR (Mr. Whale’s Game Service); Sumer (Studio Wumpus); Bad Blood (Winnie Song)

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Seumas McNally Grand Prize

  • Mini Metro (Dinosaur Polo Club)
  • Darkest Dungeon (Red Hook Studios Inc.)
  • Her Story (Sam Barlow)
  • Keep Talking & Nobody Explodes (Steel Crate Games)
  • Superhot (SUPERHOT)
  • Undertale (Toby Fox)

Honourable mentions: The Beginner’s Guide (Everything Unlimited Ltd.); Panoramical (Fernando Ramallo & David Kanaga); Affordable Space Adventures (KnapNok Games and Nifflas’ Games); Twelve Minutes (Luis Antonio); Oxenfree (Night School Studio); That Dragon, Cancer (Numinous Games); Cibele (Star Maid Games); Soft Body (Zeke Virant)

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