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GDC: Aquaria wins Indie Games Festival grand prize

2D underwater adventure title Aquaria has won the Seamus McNally Grand Prize at the Independent Games Festival awards, earning a $20,000 cash prize for developers Bit Blot.

The awards, which are designed to recognise and reward innovation and creativity in the independent sector, were presented in San Francisco last night at the same ceremony which handed out the Game Developers Choice Awards.

Aside from Aquaria's Best Independent Game win, there were two awards for shoot 'em up title Everyday Shooter, which picked up Design Innovation and Audio gongs, while Xbox Live Arcade title Castle Crashers took the Visual Art award.

The Technical Excellence award went to online title Bang! Howdy, and the honour for Best Web Game went to point and click puzzle title Samorost 2.

In addition, two special awards were presented - an audience award voted for by readers of US website GameSpot, which went to Castle Crashers, and three special cash advances being awarded by GameTap for games which will now be featured on its download service. Those advances went to Everyday Shooter ($10,000), Blast Miner and RoboBlitz ($5,000 each).

Recognising the emergence of exciting new talent from the student sector, a new award was instituted this year for Best Student Game, with a $2,500 prize pot. The winner chosen from the IGF Student Showcase game selection was capture the flag title Toblo, which was developed by students at the DigiPen Institute of Technology.

Finally, rewarding new talent in the amateur mod scene, the IGF Mod Competition handed gongs to Half-Life 2 modification Weekday Warrior not once but twice - with the mod picking up the $5000 award for Best Mod as well as the award for Best Singleplayer FPS Mod.

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Rob Fahey avatar

Rob Fahey

Contributing Editor

Rob Fahey is a former editor of GamesIndustry.biz who spent several years living in Japan and probably still has a mint condition Dreamcast Samba de Amigo set.

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