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Inscryption and Unpacking lead the 2022 IGF Awards nominations

Inscryption, Unpacking, and Loop Hero are among the games nominated at this year’s Independent Games Festival (IGF) Awards.

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Independent Games Festival awards

Inscryption, Unpacking, and Loop Hero are among the games nominated at this year’s Independent Games Festival (IGF) Awards.

This year’s Independent Games Festival Awards recognises a varied and impressive selection of games developed by independent studios.

Leading the nominations are Inscryption from Daniel Mullins Games and Unpacking from Witch Beam, both of which have been nominated in four categories, including the Seumas McNally Grand Prize.

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Other finalists include Toem, Sable, Mini Motorways, and Cruelty Squad. We’re also pleased to see Tux and Funny in the mix for the Nuovo Award. It was one of our 2021 GOTY picks and a game that “clearly understands the tactile beauty of the interactive medium.”

In all honesty, if you like video games, you should check out as many nominated titles as you can. You find cutting edge examples of game design and artistry in every category.

The 2022 IGF Awards will be held in person for the first time in two years on March 23, during the Game Developers Conference. You can watch the awards online via the official GDC Twitch channel.

Here’s the complete list of IGF award nominees and honourable mentions.

Independent Games Festival (IGF) Awards Nominees

Best Student Game

  • Cai Cai Balão (Look Up Games)
  • Abriss – build to destroy (Randwerk Games eG)
  • Letter Lattice (Ethan Zarov)
  • Smalllife (Yueqi Wu)
  • Nainai’s Recipe (Fan Fang, Mai Hou)
  • Live Adventure (Live Adventure Team)

Honorable Mentions: Astreia’s Gift (Femy Nassirou & Hervé Blanchot), There You Are (Funky Dango), The Bleeding Tree (No Input Interactive), dumpling.love (the parks staff), Lysfangha (Baptiste Marsac & Daphne Pauchet-Deloffre), Jivana (Team Jivana), Hook Up (Team Hook Up), Come with Me (Xin Ye)

Excellence in Audio

  • Toem (Something We Made)
  • Unpacking (Witch Beam)
  • Jett: The Far Shore (Superbrothers A/V + Pine Scented)
  • Mini Motorways (Dinosaur Polo Club)
  • Sable (Shedworks)
  • Inscryption (Daniel Mullins Games)

Honorable Mentions: Severed Steel (Greylock Studios), A Musical Story (Glee-Cheese Studios), Death’s Door (Acid Nerve), The Vale: Shadow of the Crown (Falling Squirrel), Kena: Bridge of Spirits (Ember Lab), Overboard! (inkle), The Wild at Heart (Moonlight Kids)

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Excellence in Design

  • Inscryption (Daniel Mullins Games)
  • Unpacking (Witch Beam)
  • Overboard! (inkle)
  • Strange Horticulture (Bad Viking)
  • Webbed (Sbug Games)
  • Midnight Protocol (LuGus Studios)

Honorable Mentions: Loop Hero (Four Quarters), Unsighted (Studio Pixel Punk), Mini Motorways (Dinosaur Polo Club), Card Shark (Nerial), KeyWe (Stonewheat & Sons), Sunshine Heavy Industries (Daisyowl Games)

Excellence in Narrative

  • Last Call (Nina Freeman and Jake Jefferies)
  • Neurocracy (Playthroughline)
  • Closed Hands (Passenger)
  • Overboard! (inkle)
  • Inscryption (Daniel Mullins Games)
  • Unpacking (Witch Beam)

Honorable Mentions: Card Shark (Nerial), Norco (Geography of Robots), The Big Con (Mighty Yell ),
Tux and Fanny (Ghost Time Games), Opus: Echo of Starsong (Sigono), Sable (Shedworks), Blackhaven (Historiated Games)

Excellence in Visual Art

  • The Eternal Cylinder (ACE Team)
  • Behind the Frame: The Finest Scenery (Silver Lining Studio)
  • Papetura (Petums)
  • Fuzz Dungeon (Jeremy Couillard)
  • The Wild at Heart (Moonlight Kids)
  • Jett: The Far Shore (Superbrothers A/V + Pine Scented)

Honorable Mentions: Inscryption (Daniel Mullins Games), A Musical Story (Glee-Cheese Studios), Kena: Bridge of Spirits (Ember Lab), Saturnalia (Santa Ragione) Stonefly (Flight School Studio), Cris Tales (Dreams Uncorporated, Syck)

Nuovo Award

  • Memory Card (Lily Zone)
  • Okthryssia and Saturnia’s Bureaucratic Adventures (Outlands)
  • Space Hole 2020 (Sam Atlas)
  • Tux and Fanny (Ghost Time Games)
  • Cruelty Squad (Consumer Softproducts)
  • Sparkles & Gems (Resnijars)
  • Fuzz Dungeon (Jeremy Couillard)
  • Cuccchi (Fantastico Studio)

Honorable Mentions: Last Call (Nina Freeman and Jake Jefferies), The Shape of Time (落日间 xpaidia studio), The Under Presents (Tender Claws), ~Song of Homunculus~ (Diamond Ace (Lily Zone + Zoë Sparks)), Card Shark (Nerial), The Vale: Shadow of the Crown (Falling Squirrel)

Seumas McNally Grand Prize

  • Inscryption (Daniel Mullins Games)
  • Unpacking (Witch Beam)
  • Loop Hero (Four Quarters)
  • The Eternal Cylinder (ACE Team)
  • Cruelty Squad (Consumer Softproducts)
  • Unsighted (Studio Pixel Punk)

Honorable Mentions: Toem (Something We Made), Norco (Geography of Robots), Overboard! (inkle), Saturnalia (Santa Ragione), Dodgeball Academia (Pocket Trap), Webbed (Sbug Games), Fuzz Dungeon (Jeremy Couillard)


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Thumbsticks editor and connoisseur of Belgian buns. Currently playing: Triangle Strategy, Kirby and the Forgotten Lands, and Into the Breach.