Iowa State University Game Development Competition

Exhibition Day

All events will be held in the Great Hall in the Memorial Union on April 20, 2011.


8-10 AM Teams set up
10 AM-12 PM Teams meet with judges at scheduled time, public walkthrough
12 PM-1 PM Break (Great Hall doors locked)
1-3 PM Teams meet with judges at scheduled time, public walkthrough
3-5 PM Great Hall doors closed for judging; games need to be set up and playable (doors will be locked and the room monitored)
5 PM Equipment pickup
7-8 PM Presentation by Nate Sumsion of Disney Interactive and awards ceremony

Your entire team should be present for the scheduled judging time. Otherwise, at least one member of your team or a trusted friend should be present to safeguard your display.


The only content that we ask you to submit is a short video describing your game. Videos will be shared with Motorola in a closing report. The video should follow these criteria:

  • Submitted on a USB drive before 9:30 AM on April 20. The video file should be named teamname_gametitle.ext and encoded in a format supported by VLC. Videos will be displayed on the Great Hall projector throughout the exhibition, but teams should also have them available with sound at their display. You may wish to bring a dedicated laptop for showing the video.
  • Length is three minutes or less.
  • Opens with the team name, the team members' names, and the game title.
  • Shows a significant amount of game play. Screen recording can be done with software capturers (CamStudio and XVidCap are free), video cameras (freely available from IT Services), or both.
  • Optionally contains narration about the game's intended audience, genre, business issues (methods for distribution, possible funding, etc.) and technical issues (such as what methods were used to create the game) and anything else the team thinks is relevant to their game. This is not required, but it will help judges recall details during the closed judging time.
  • Please do not show code. We like code, but not code movies.


Teams will be judged according to their prowess in three areas:
  1. Art and aesthetics, including but not limited to the quality of the 3-D modeling, animation, or drawing; compelling story-telling and narrative; ease of player control; appropriateness of sound.
  2. Technical merit, including but not limited to software stability, polished game mechanics, effective use of game engines or custom architecture, application of sound software development principles.
  3. Business plan, including but not limited to evidence that the game has attracted or could attract players and profit, discussion of its relationship to existing games (what makes your game different or better than than Contra?), lessons learned in project management, and methods of promotion and distribution.
Teams receive up to 10 points in each category for a total of 30 points. Ties will be broken in a manner chosen by the judges. The three teams with the highest point totals in each game category are the winners.

Popular Vote

In addition to the nine awards determined by the judges, we will hold a popular vote. The general public can vote on your game in several ways:

  1. By liking your video posted on YouTube. Please send a link to your video to so that numbers may be monitored.
  2. By dropping a paper with your team's name on it in the box made available during the VEISHEA showcase. Your team must be present for votes to count.
  3. By dropping a paper with your team's name on it in the box made available in the Great Hall on exhibition day.

Please understand that there is no way to ensure that individuals vote using only one of these methods. Exploit this to your advantage.

The top two vote-getters will be awarded $2000 and $1000 in addition to any other awards. It is in your best interest to advertise and encourage attendees to visit YouTube, the VEISHEA showcase, and exhibition day.

News & Updates

Thinking Worlds

Caspian Learning has donated licenses to their Thinking Worlds rapid 3-D game authoring software.

October Workshop

Developer Chad Kilgore and designer Denise Bacher of High Voltage Software will present on their industry experience on October 11 at 7 PM in 1210 LeBaron Hall. Note the change in venue from our previous workshop!

Game Development Course

Dr. Steve Herrnstadt will be offering ArtIS 409/509, a course for credit on game development, in spring 2011 to students registered for the game development competition. Follow the mailing list discussion for more details.

September Workshop

8monkey Labs, developers of Darkest of Days for Xbox 360 and PC, will kick off the competition on September 8 at 7 PM in 2245 Coover Hall.

University news release