Developer Team Outer Wilds took away not one but two awards from this year's IGF, held during the Game Developers Conference. The studio's eponymous Outer Wilds won the Seumas McNally Grand Prize for Best Independent Game (along with the associated $30,000 cash prize) and the title was honored with the Excellence in Design award, which comes with a $3,000 prize. The game is described as "an innovative intergalactic adventure in which players probe the depths of space and unravel the mysteries of the cosmos."
A number of unique indie efforts won other prizes, such as this year's Nuovo Award (which IGF says "celebrates abstract and unconventional games") which went to Nathalie Lawhead's Tetrageddon Games. The title is seen as "an open source parody of digital life" and "encourages players to engage in bizarre creations and build on its own distinctive narrative using downloadable source files, assets and modifications."
Here's the complete list of categories and associated winners:
Excellence in Visual Art ($3,000) - Metamorphabet (Patrick Smith of Vectorpark)
Nuovo Award ($5,000) - Tetrageddon Games (Nathalie Lawhead)
Excellence in Audio ($3,000) - Ephemerid: A Musical Adventure (SuperChop Games)
Excellence in Narrative ($3,000) - 80 Days (inkle)
Best Student Game ($3,000) - Close Your (Goodbye World Games - University of Southern California)
Audience Award ($3,000) - This War of Mine (11 bit studios)
Excellence in Design ($3,000) - Outer Wilds (Team Outer Wilds)
Seumas McNally Grand Prize ($30,000) - Outer Wilds (Team Outer Wilds)