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Czarcade won the Best in Show award at the Casual Game Association‘s indie prize showcase at the Casual Connect game conference last week in San Francisco. Such awards shows have become more important in the indie market, where it’s increasingly hard to predict what will be the next Clash of Clans (a potential billion-dollar game made by Supercell in Helsinki).
The Portland-based Czarcade studio won the award for its Clobbr game, which is cartoon-style puzzle game in which you play a cute little blue guy who has to hit a stump with a hammer and smash a rock through a maze and knock out a cat. Clobbr beat out more than 100 rivals at the show, which focuses on unpublished games created by independent game developers. Ten other teams also won prizes.
“It is astonishing to see how far talented and creative developers like Czarcade can take their games without the help of a publishing contract or venture capital,” said Jessica Tams, managing director of the Casual Games Association. “The Indie Prize Showcase has fast become the most talked about event at Casual Connect and something we hope continues to drive innovation and new publishing relationships.”
The founders of Czarcade opened their doors about a year ago. They include Clifton B, Yori Kvitchko, and Yoshini Gunawardena. The animator is Norman Morana, and sound artist is Nathan Antony. That makes a team of five people. For their prize, they got a Z10 phone from Blackberry, a Nexus 7 tablet from Wild Tangent, and software licenses from Click Team. Clifton B said via e-mail that his team is sifting through offers from about 20 companies that want to publish Clobbr.
Here’s the full list of the awards:
- Best In Show: Clobbr by Czarcade (Mobile)
- Best Game Art: Dragon Up by East Side Games (Facebook/Mobile)
- Best Game Audio: Giana Sisters: Twisted Dreams by Black Forest Games (Console/Steam)
- Most Innovative Game: 7 Grand Steps by Mousechief (PC Download)
- Best Story: The Ballads of Reemus by ClickShake Games (PC Download)
- Most Promising Game in Development: Lost Toys by Barking Mouse Studio (Mobile)
- Best Mobile Game: Skiing Fred by Dedalord Games (Mobile)
- Best Desktop Game: Guns of Icarus Online by Muse Games (Steam)
- Best Puzzle Game: Rise of The Blobs by Robot Invader (Mobile)
- Best Multiplayer: Astroflux by Fula Fisken (Online browser)
Five more game teams received Director’s Choice awards, sponsored by Unity Technologies. They were: Winning Blimp with Mosaique; Keybol with Pretentious Game 2; MagicalTimeBean with Escape Goat 2; Archive Entertainment with 8BitMMO; and StaalMedia with Steamyballs. Elin Jonsson, the cofounder and artist at Imaginary Games, received the Most Prominent Female Developer Award.