Sponsors: The 2010 Indie Game Challenge (“Contest”) is sponsored by GameStop, Inc. (“GameStop”), 625 Westport Parkway, Grapevine, TX 76051; The Guildhall at Southern Methodist University (the “Guildhall”), 5232 Tennyson Parkway Building 2 Plano, TX 75024; and The Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences (“AIAS”), 23622 Calabasas Road, Suite 220, Calabasas, CA 91302 (collectively “Sponsors”).

Eligibility: Contest is open to individuals or teams comprised of individuals as listed below (collectively, “Entrants”). Void where prohibited. Contest is subject to all local, state and federal laws and regulations. By entering this Contest, all Entrants agree to comply with and be bound by these Official Rules, and to comply with all federal, state and local laws and regulations. Entrants may be comprised of the following and will be asked to register as such:

1.Individuals: A natural person who is solely responsible for the creation of the Entered Game, as defined below. Individual must be a legal resident of the fifty United States and the District of Columbia, who is 13 years or older at the time of entry. Entrants under the age of 18 may be asked to provide evidence of parent or legal guardian consent satisfactory to Sponsors. Entrants may be asked to provide documentation for proof of United States residence.

2.Teams: Team Submissions are permitted. Teams must designate one person (“Team Representative”) to represent the Team in entering the Team Submission. Any prize awarded to a Team shall be presented to the Team Representative. Teams may be comprised of a maximum of 15 individuals (“Team Members”), including the Team Representative. Team Representative is responsible for identifying all Team Members and will have final authority in dividing prizes amongst the team (if awarded). For purposes of this Contest, the Team Representative shall be deemed “Entrant” and must have the permission and consent of Team Members to act in this role and confirm the Team’s agreement with these Official Rules. During registration, Entrants may be asked to designate size of Team for administrative purposes only. Team Representative must be legal resident of the fifty United States and the District of Columbia, and must be 13 years or older at time of entry. Entrants under the age of 18 may be asked to provide evidence of parent or legal guardian consent satisfactory to Sponsors. Team Representative may be asked to provide documentation for proof of United States residence. Teams are solely responsible for their own collaboration and cooperation with respect to Contest participation. In no event will Sponsors officiate in any dispute regarding the activities and participation of Team Members.

3.Each Entrant may submit no more than 3 Entered Games whether as an Individual or as Team Representative on behalf of a Team. However, a Team member who is not a Team Representative may be on an unlimited number of teams.

Entrants are eligible to enter the Contest in one of the following two categories and will be asked to register as such:

1.Professional – Defined as Individual or Team in which any member has at least 2 years of professional game studio or digital creation employment OR has been credited on a published game.

2.Non-Professional – Defined as Individual or Team in which no member has 2 years or more of professional game studio or digital creation employment OR has been credited on a published game.

Subject to the eligibility requirements set forth in these Official Rules, Contest is open to GameStop Field, Store, and Distribution Center employees, members of the AIAS not involved in judging the Contest, and students and faculty of the Guildhall. GameStop directors, officers and/or employees, who work at the corporate headquarters, and members of the AIAS and Guildhall representatives, who are involved in judging the Contest, together with members of their immediate families (parent, child, sibling and spouse of each regardless of where they reside) and those living in their same households (whether or not related) are prohibited from entry.

Term: The Contest begins on July 14, 2009, at 12:01 a.m. Central Standard Time (“CST”) and ends on October 1st, 2009, at 11:59 p.m. CST (“Contest Term”). Finalists will be announced on or about January 15, 2010. Grand Prize Winners will be announced on or about February 19, 2010.

How to Enter: Entrants may enter at (the “Contest Website”). Entrants must also submit the following before October 1, 2009, at 11:59 p.m. CST (“Contest End Date”) to the following address:

Indie Game Challenge

5232 Tennyson Parkway

Building 2

Plano, TX 75024

  • A copy of the confirmation page made available after registering at (the “Contest Website”). At time of registration, Entrants will be required to accurately and truthfully provide all mandatory registration information specified on the Contest Website for participation, including agreement to the Official Rules. Entrants will also be asked to register for the Contest as either a Professional or Non-Professional, as defined above.

  • A digital copy of the video game being entered (an “Entered Game”), submitted by sending 10 physical copies of the Entered Game in playable form, on ten (10) separate CD-ROMs or DVDs, along with ten (10) sets of any special equipment or hardware (e.g., graphics cards, 3D glasses, special controllers, etc.) necessary to play the Entered Game, if applicable, as well as any other supporting materials. During the registration process on the Contest Website, Entrants will be asked to categorize Entered Game into one of 3 categories (Casual, Core, or Cause) for administrative purposes only. All game discs must be submitted with an installer. Game discs must also include a document with instructions for installing the game and basic game play instructions. This document must be in PDF, Word, text, or HTML. iPhone game entries require a special process for submission. For detailed instructions on how to submit an iPhone game, please email

  • A pitch video (a “Video Submission”), submitted by sending 2 physical copies of the Video Submission on (2) separate CD-ROMs or DVDs (.mpg, .mp4, .mov, .flv, .avi, .wmv, .mp3, .wav format ONLY). Video Submission should be comprised of the following: In 60 seconds or less, tell us about you, your game, and why you think your game should win the Indie Game Challenge. Entrants can take creative liberties to showcase video editing skills and have the option to incorporate themselves and/or footage of their game in order to make pitch.

  • A copy of the payment confirmation page from PayPal for a $100 non-refundable application fee, which must be submitted via PayPal on the Contest Website. Members of the GameStop Edge Card program may submit $75, instead of $100, upon providing Edge Membership account number, located on the back of the Edge Membership card, during registration on the Contest Website. By law, residents of Arizona, Connecticut, Maryland, North Dakota, and Vermont do not have to pay an application fee.

All physical entry materials become the property of Sponsors and will not be returned.

Additional Entry Requirements:

  • All content of each Entered Game component must be the Entrant’s original design and creation. Each Entered Game must not contain any copyrighted works (other than as owned by the Entrant). Any elements appearing in Entered Game, including, without limitation music, audio, speech/voiceovers, stills, video, supers or other audiovisual materials used must be entirely original, created and performed by the Entrant, or be in the public domain. Use of any elements, including without limitation music, audio, speech/voiceovers, video, stills, visuals, or other materials that are not original or in the public domain may result in disqualification of Entered Game at Sponsors’ sole discretion, unless Entrant has prior written approval from copyright holders to use such materials.

  • Teams and individuals are limited to entering only one iPhone game into the Indie Game Challenge. iPhone game entries require a special process for submission. For detailed instructions on how to submit an iPhone game, please email

  • Games that make use of third party game engines, middleware, or other software or technology are only eligible if the Entrant has all necessary rights to commercially publish the game. For instance, if an Entrant does not have full legal rights to commercially release a game using the Unreal engine, that game is not eligible for the Contest. Entrants may be required to detail all third party software and tools used for creation of Entered Game.

  • Entered Games must not contain obscene or indecent content, including but not limited to nudity, pornography or profanity. Entered Games must not contain defamatory or disparaging statements (including but not limited to words or symbols that are widely considered offensive to individuals of a certain race, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation or socioeconomic group) about other people or companies, and must not promote use of alcohol, illegal drugs or tobacco. Entered Games must not include threats to any person, place, business, group or nation, and must not invade privacy or other rights of any person, firm or entity, and it must not in any other way violate applicable laws and regulations. Sponsors reserve the right to refuse any Entered Game or Video Submission for any reason at any given point in time in their sole discretion. All such decisions of Sponsors are final.

  • All Entered Games will be reviewed for content before being judged; however, such review does not relieve Entrant from responsibility for compliance with these Official Rules. Entered Games that do not comply with these Official Rules or that otherwise contain prohibited, or inappropriate content as determined by the Sponsors, in their sole discretion, will be disqualified and will not be considered for a prize. Sponsors make the final determination as to which Entered Games are eligible to take part in this Contest and be considered for a Finalist Prize.

  • Certain Video Submissions and Entrant Game information and images may be featured from time to time on the Website during the Contest Entry Period, in Sponsors’ sole discretion; being selected as a featured Video Submission is unrelated to the Judging Criteria and does not guarantee selection as a Finalist in the Contest.

  • Entered Games may be designed for play on any platform (ex: PC, Mac, Game Console). For judging purposes, Entered Game discs should come with installer for PC platform. Any Entrant submitting an Entered Game that requires special hardware or equipment to play may, at Sponsors’ sole discretion, may be contacted by Sponsor to obtain the hardware or equipment at the Entrant’s sole expense.

  • If using software development kits (i.e. Xbox Dev Kit), entrants may be required to submit SDK version.

  • Software updates of Entered Games are prohibited.

Entered Games will be judged according to the criteria (“Judging Criteria”) set forth below by a panel of judges, consisting of members of AIAS, representatives of the Guildhall, and members of GameStop’s executive team, considering the following overall criteria: (1) Originality – uniqueness of concept; (2) Creativity – implementation and innovation in mechanics; and (3) Playability – ease of use, fun factor and re-playability. Application of the Judging Criteria to Entries shall be at the sole discretion. The judges’ decisions are final and binding in all matters relating to this Contest.

Finalists will be announced on or about January 15, 2010. Grand Prize Winners will be announced on February 19, 2010 at awards reception at Red Rock Casino Resort Spa, 11011 W. Charleston, Las Vegas, NV 89135, following the annual Design Innovate Communicate Entertain (D.I.C.E.) Summit. Finalists will be contacted by phone at the phone number provided during online registration process on or about January 6, 2010. If, after reasonable attempts to determine or contact any Finalist, and the Finalist does not respond within seven (7) calendar days of such notification, the entire prize will be forfeited and Sponsors will seek an alternate Finalist from among all remaining eligible entries.

Potential Finalist may be required to obtain releases from all members of their respective Team and/or any and all third parties appearing in or implicated by their respective Entered Game. If any potential winner is considered a minor in his/her jurisdiction of residence, Affidavit of Eligibility, Liability/Publicity must be signed by his/her parent or legal guardian.


If an eligible Entered Game is selected as a Contest Finalist, the following prizes will be awarded on February 19, 2010 at an awards reception at Red Rock Casino Resort Spa, 11011 W. Charleston, Las Vegas, NV 89135. Contest Finalists need not be present to win prizes. ARV of all prizes combined: $ 247,500.

Total of twelve (12) Finalists, divided into (6) Non Professional Finalist Prizes and (6) Professional Finalist Prizes. Each of the (12) Finalists receives:

  • $500 USD per person (One per Team Member for a maximum of 5 Team Members) (stipend for travel arrangements to attend awards ceremony, publisher meeting, and trophy presentation at Red Rock Casino Resort Spa, 11011 W. Charleston, Las Vegas, NV 89135). If Finalist is considered a minor in his/her jurisdiction of residence, Finalist must travel with his/her parent or legal guardian.

  • An audition session with a professional game publisher of no more than 30 minutes in which Finalist will have opportunity to showcase Entered Game for possible publishing contract, which would be offered only at sole and unfettered discretion of participating professional game publisher. Finalists are not required to be present to win Grand Prize


  • Two (2) Grand Prize Winners will be selected from among the 12 Finalists: (1) Non Professional Grand Prize Winner and (1) Professional Grand Prize Winner. Each Grand Prize Winner Receives:

    • $100,000 USD (awarded to Team Representative if valid Team entry)

  • Three (3) Skill Award Winners will be selected from among the 12 Finalists: (1) Technical Skill Award Winner, (1) Art Skill Award Winner, and (1) Gameplay Skill Award Winner. Professional vs. Non Professional Entrants will not be a factor in determining this prize. Each Skill Prize Winner Receives:

    • $2,500 USD (awarded to Team Representative if valid Team entry)

  • One “People’s Choice” prize to be awarded for best Pitch Video

    • $10,000 USD (awarded to Team Representative if valid Team entry)

  • In addition, one tuition Scholarship to attend the 17-month Graduate Video Game Development Program at The Guildhall at Southern Methodist University in Plano, TX will be awarded as follows.

    • Scholarship winner will be selected from all eligible contest Entrants who elect to receive Scholarship information during registration process on Contest Website. Upon opting to receive information, Entrants will be contacted by The Guildhall at SMU to complete a formal application process. Potential Scholarship recipients must meet basic requirements set forth by the SMU Admissions Committee, which can be found at

      • Scholarship winner will be selected by an SMU Admissions Committee based on a good academic and personal match between student and institution and student potential to benefit from and contribute to the Guildhall at SMU community in a variety of ways within and beyond the classroom.

      • In the event that there are no qualified Entrants, The Guildhall at SMU makes no guarantee that a Scholarship will be awarded to an Entrant and reserves the right to withhold this prize.


    Prize Restrictions: Prizes are non-transferable and no substitutions are allowed except by Sponsors, who reserve the right to award a prize of equal or greater value, should the prize become unavailable for any reason. Taxes, meals, gratuities, travel upgrades, duties or other costs, if any, relating to receipt, acceptance and or use of prizes are the sole responsibility of the prize winner, and Sponsors are not responsible for any disputes arising between Team members regarding prize dispersal. By accepting any prize, winners consent to use of his/her name or likeness for advertising/publicity purposes without further consideration, except where prohibited by law. If for any reason the Contest is not capable of running as planned, including without limitation, infection by computer virus, bugs, tampering, unauthorized intervention, fraud, technical failures, or any other causes which corrupt or affect the administration, security, fairness, integrity or proper conduct of the contest, Sponsor reserves the right, at its sole discretion, to cancel, modify or terminate the contest.

    Participation in Contest and/or acceptance of prize constitutes each entrant’s permission for Sponsors to use his/her name, address (city and state), likeness, photograph, picture, portrait, voice, biographical information, Entered Game, Video Submission and/or any statements made by each entrant regarding the Contest or Sponsors for advertising and promotional purposes without notice or additional compensation, except where prohibited by law.

    Privacy: Any information collected will be subject to Sponsor’s Privacy Policy, located at (the “Policy”). By entering the Contest, Entrant acknowledges that Entrant has agreed to the Policy and Entrant consents to the collection, use and disclosure of Entrant’s personal information for the purposes of administering this Contest in accordance with the Policy. If Entrant wishes to access or correct Entrant’s personal information held by us, opt out of receiving further communications from us or our affiliated merchants or companies, or have other questions respecting our privacy policy, please contact us at GameStop – Indie Game Challenge, 1999 Bryan Street, Suite 1800, Dallas, TX 75201

    Representations: By entering the Contest, each Individual and/or Team Representative submitting entry materials (including an Entered Game) represents and warrants that:

    • The Entrant and the Entered Game fully comply with all eligibility requirements and all other provisions of these Official Rules;

    • In preparing the Entered Game and entering and participating in the Contest, the Entrant has complied and will comply in all respects with all applicable laws, regulations, and rules and has not violated nor will violate any agreement or understanding by which it is bound, including any confidentiality, employment, consulting, intellectual property assignment, or license agreement;

    • The Entered Game consists entirely of Entrant’s own original work or of work to which Entrant has all necessary rights; and

    • Neither the Entered Game nor the duplication, use, display, performance, or distribution of the Entered Game will infringe or misappropriate any intellectual property or other proprietary rights of any person or entity.

    Conduct: By participating, Entrants agree to comply with and be bound by these Official Rules. Failure to comply with these Official Rules may result in disqualification from the Contest. Entrants further agree to comply with and be bound by decisions of Sponsors, which shall be final and binding in all respects. Sponsors reserve the right at its sole discretion to disqualify any individual it finds to be: (a) tampering or attempting to tamper with the entry process or the operation of the Contest or any Sponsor web site; (b) violating these Official Rules; (c) violating the Official Rules of service, conditions of use and/or general rules or guidelines of any Sponsor property or service; or (d) acting in an unsportsmanlike or disruptive manner, or with intent to annoy, abuse, threaten or harass any other person. Sponsors reserve the right, in their sole discretion, to cancel, terminate, modify, extend or suspend this Contest should (in their sole discretion) virus, bugs, non-authorized human intervention, fraud or other causes beyond its control corrupt or affect the administration, security, fairness or proper conduct of the Contest. In such case, Sponsor may select the Finalists or winners from all eligible entries received prior to and/or after (if appropriate) the action taken by Sponsors.

    Release and Limitation of Liability: By entering, Entrants release and hold harmless Sponsors, their respective parent, subsidiaries, affiliates, directors, officers, employees and related entities (collectively, “Releasees”) from any and all liability, claims or actions of any kind whatsoever for injuries, damages or losses to persons and property that may be sustained in connection with the receipt, ownership, or use of the prize from or arising out of participation in this Contest. Sponsors assume no responsibility or liability for (1) any error, omission, interruption, deletion, defect, delay in operation or transmission, communications line failure, theft or destruction or unauthorized access to, or alteration of, entries; (2) any incorrect or inaccurate information, whether caused by entrants, printing errors or by any of the equipment or programming associated with or utilized in the Contest; (3) any problems or technical malfunction of any telephone network or telephone lines, computer on-line systems, servers, or providers, computer equipment, software, failure of any e-mail or entry to be received by Sponsors on account of technical problems, human error or traffic congestion on the Internet or at any website, or any combination thereof, including any injury or damage to participants or any other person’s computer relating to or resulting from participation in this Contest or uploading any materials in this Contest; (4) technical or human error which may occur in the processing of entries; or (5) any injury or damage to persons or property which may be caused, directly or indirectly, in whole or in part, from entrants participation in the Contest or receipt or use or misuse of any prize.


    Force Majeure: The failure of the Releasees to comply with any provision of these Official Rules due to an act of God, hurricane, war, fire, riot, earthquake, act of public enemies, actions of governmental authorities outside of the control of the Releasees (excepting compliance with applicable codes and regulations) or other force majeure event will not be considered a breach of these Official Rules.

    Disputes: Except where prohibited or otherwise outlined in these Official Rules, Entrant agrees that: (1) any and all disputes, claims and causes of action arising out of or connected with this Contest or any prize awarded shall be resolved individually, without resort to any form of class action, and exclusively by the appropriate Texas State Court; (2) any and all claims, judgments and awards shall be limited to actual out-of-pocket costs incurred, including costs associated with entering this Contest, but in no event attorneys fees; and (3) under no circumstances will Entrant be permitted to obtain awards for, and entrant hereby waives all rights to claim, indirect, punitive, incidental and consequential damages and any other damages, other than for actual out-of-pocket expenses, and any and all rights to have damages multiplied or otherwise increased. All issues and questions concerning the construction, validity, interpretation and enforceability of these Official Rules, or the rights and obligations of the Entrant and Sponsor in connection with the Contest, shall be governed by, and construed in accordance with, the laws of the State of Texas, without giving effect to any choice of law or conflict of law rules (whether of the state of Texas or any other jurisdiction), which would cause the application of the laws of any jurisdiction other than the State of Texas.

    Winner List: A winner’s list will be made available on the Website at at the conclusion of the Contest on February 22, 2010. To obtain a copy of the winner list or a copy of these Official Rules, send your request along with a stamped, self-addressed envelope to: GameStop – Indie Game Challenge, 1999 Bryan Street, Suite 1800, Dallas, TX 75201