You Are Democracy: IGF Audience Award

independent game developers fought for your right to vote

You there! You enjoy an independent game from time to time, don’t you? I can tell by the way you walk, chin forward, face to the front, heels to the rear. It’s the kind of sensible approach to ambulation that befits a voyager in the wilder realms of the land called Game. You’ll be pleased to hear that the voting for the IGF 2012 Audience Award is now open, meaning you can pop over to the site, download any entrant that has a publicly available build and then vote for your favourite. In the meantime you can also familiarise yourself with the main event finalists in this fine series of word-speaks.

All the links to the games are at the site so I’m going to point you toward everything we’ve written on each selection instead of to their actual websites. I hope that’s OK. If you only have time to play a few games, this might help you to choose, or you might play one and then read our opinions again and think, “heavens to Betsy, they were terribly mistaken!” That is fine too. Naturally, I’m only listing games that are being released on PC, the vast majority of which we have already covered.

Mind-melting Antichamber words are here.

A repository of knowledge regarding Terry Cavanagh’s At A Distance resides within this link.

Crushingly difficult doomsday simulation Atom Zombie Smasher has had quite a few thoughts lavished upon it. There they are.

Beautiful Botanicula has sprouted some lexical growth over yonder.

I bet we’ve written loads about spooky mod-no-more Dear Esther. Yes, we have.

The lyrics to a puzzling English Country Tune can be found here.

A great deal of love for Frozen Synapse has stopped mid-action here, waiting for your eyes to peruse it.

A post about GIRP is clinging to the rugged wall of Castle RPS in this location.

Infiltration and man-punching are detailed in this fine collection of words about Gunpoint.

Prom Night models ‘social physics’ and we’ve chatted with the developers. We think they liked us.

Exploration and music exist in harmony in Proteus’ tranquil landscapes. There are words here and here, because it used to be called Proteus EP to make my life slightly more difficult.

Realm of the Mad God was behind one of the doors of our Advent Calendar! That and plenty more here.

To The Moon was secreted inside our Advent Calendar as well! This is exciting and you can read all about the excitement here.

There’s a teensy bit about cooperative adventure WAY here. I’m sure we’ll write more once we’ve fiddled with it.

Finally, there’s Wonderputt, a crazy golf Flash game with a beautiful design. Have a gander.

Play, enjoy, vote.


  1. Andy`` says:

    Choice? Oh man.

    I’m going to go with “Gunpoint is a link and the rest of the names aren’t so it’s automatically better”, because I really don’t know what to choose out of all the greatness

  2. kurtcocaine says:

    My vote goes to To The Moon… briliiant storytelling. Wish there were more like it out there..

    While trying out Wonderputt (which i didnt really like), I found this game..

    link to

    Pretty brilliant.. Draws much inspiration from Limbo but i found the gameplay quite good.. give it a try..
    If anyone does give it a try, take a look at the walkthrough to figure out how it’s played..

  3. CMaster says:

    It’s hardy very IGF if we can only vote on games that are available.
    Everybody knows that the IGF exists solely for judges to be smug about playing games that nobody else can and giving awards to games that are never released/have changed to something dramatically different by the time they are.

    • The Sombrero Kid says:

      Seems a bit bitter, but I am confused about voting for games i can’t play yet?

  4. wodin says:

    “Way” seems an interesting concept. I voted for Frozen…only because I want to see more tactical games and if it wins I might get more…

  5. Fomorian1988 says:

    Voted for To the Moon (beautiful, beautiful story; beautiful, beatiful soundtrack) – though I’m saddened by the fact that I didn’t vote for Botanicula or Spelunky.

  6. El_Emmental says:

    Information worth knowing:

    Voting will be open until Sunday, February 19th at midnight PST ”

    That’s 12 days remaining to try these games and read the previews before voting, so take your time :)

    Current feeling when seeing the 527-long games list:

    I love indie games. I love every kind of indie games. Sorry, I just, I really love indie games and I just wanna play all of them but I can’t cause it’s crazy. I can’t play every indie games…

  7. Premium User Badge

    Bluerps says:

    So. Many. Games.

  8. johnnyr says:

    I guess I’m confused. Several of these don’t have any publicly available builds, yet I can still vote for them? (Gunpoint is a good example)

  9. pertusaria says:

    Just tried the two that I spotted were free to play in a browser, for now. I enjoyed Wonderputt as a short distraction, but didn’t feel compelled to try to improve once I’d seen all there was to see. I liked GIRP for a slightly head-wrecking but very simple game mechanic.

    P.S. Please, will somebody make a good copy (uh, I mean definitely not a copy, really, honest) of Marble Madness? I get a bit of my fix from Rock of Ages, but it really isn’t the same thing. Maybe a crazy golf theme would work. If you do this and make a copy available to me, I promise to buy you a beer (or equivalent).

  10. ThaneSolus says:

    Cant we stop with Minecraft already, while it has a great sandbox gameplay, Notch is a terribad java progammer, that thinks he is god. First a game like that in C++ will take less than 1gb which now it takes his horrible client with errors and plugins, and bad rendering code which should run flawless with good graphics. Second from the 30 mils euros he earned he barely invested 3-6 mil back, while Bukkit community fixes his godam inability to write code properly.

    So while i appreciate MInecrack and the design, the online community and developers behind this game are horrible. Also Notch is indie as EA is indie these days. He came with a good sandbox with an art direction specially for kids, something like Elder Scrolls for kiddies. While i commend and he deserves the money, is not that saint that everybody promotes on these sites. There actually better indie devs out there.

    Sales =/= Quality learn that ffs for once in your life.