was one of the best nights of our lives. All four
of the Directors of Introversion were present at
the IGF awards ceremony - Chris Delay, Mark Morris,
Thomas Arundel, and John Knottenbelt. We arrived
at the event dressed in Tuxedos and walked straight
past the massive queue and in through the vip entrance.
Stuff like this doesn't happen to Introversion very
often, so we're loving every minute of it.
Already an hour late, we realise the show is about
to get started so we hit the bar hard. Tom and
Mark start throwing back doubles in an attempt
to calm the nerves, since they're the guys who
will be doing the speaking tonight if we win anything.
Despite asking everyone we know in the industry
we couldn't find anyone who would admit to knowing
the results in advance, so at this point in the
evening we are both clueless and extremely nervous.
Our second game Darwinia is nominated for four
seperate awards including the Grand Prize, so
we've got our fingers crossed that we get at least
one of them.
Mark and Tom dressed to kill
The opening student showcase
awards are blasted through at breakneck speed
- we're sat next to last years Grand Prize winners
(Chronic Logic with their game Gish)
and they mentioned that last years awards went
on forever with most people leaving before the
end. This year its exactly the opposite, and our
first nominated award is upon us before we know
it - Innovation in Visual Art. The speaker says
"And the winner is" and the entire crowd
is silent - and I can actually hear my heart beating
and the blood rushing in my ears.
up on stage as calmy as we can - left foot, then
right foot, then left foot, and try not to think
about tripping over. We get on stage and Tom starts
reading out a list of thank you's to the audience.
Our plan was always to do the boring (for the
crowd) thank you's in our first award (if we get
one), and Mark's big speech in the main award
(if we get it), and things are going well so far.
Tom slurs some names slightly and I wonder if
anyone noticed. What many people don't realise
is that on stage you can't really see anything
- there are blinding lights in your face so you
can only just make out the first few rows of people,
but we can hear the crowd - and this must be what
rockstars feel like every day.
Tom, Chris, Johnny and Mark on stage
The next fifteen
minutes are basically a blur, with the IGF organisers
tearing through each award at light speed. Once
you've been on stage you don't just walk down
the same steps back to your table - you have to
exit stage right, and try to keep your head from
expanding too much as more and more people congratulate
you on your way back to your table. By the time
you get back to your table all the nominations
for the next award have already been read out
and the guy is already opening the envelope. We
didn't even get to sit down for one of the awards
- we reached our table just as the guy read out
"Darwinia!" and just walked straight
back on stage.
up the award for Technical Excellence, but lost
the award of Innovation in Game Design to Braid.
We haven't been able to find a webpage for this
game but we did play it during the IGF - its a
fascinating platform/puzzle game in which time
behaves very strangely. Sometimes you can rewind
time, sometimes time is based on your position
on screen, sometimes time runs forwards then backwards.
Its very odd but definately very cool. We clap
appreciatively and try to hide what we're really
feeling deep down inside.
Two awards won
out of three, and its time for the Big One - the
Seumas McNally Grand Prize.
Our two awards, and our green ordanance
We hastilly open
our bag of foam green Darwinians and empty them
onto the table, just in case we actually win.
This is the award we're really after - the only
award that can bring this biz trip into positive
cash-flow, and the only award that can make us
feel like we've actually won. We're up against
some serious competition - especially Chris's
hot favourite to win - Weird
Worlds: Return to Infinite Space.
We just can't believe
To the sounds of
defeaning applause we run up on stage and proceed
to hurl a box load of around forty foam Darwinians
into the audience. We're all on an absolute high
at this point. Tom says thank you and then Mark
takes the mic. He's been telling us all day that
he knows what he's going to say, but he won't
tell us, so we have no idea whats going to happen.
Mark delivers the most perfect summary of everything
Introversion stands for, and the crowd just goes
wild. For about twenty seconds we get a full earfull
of American enthusiasm - Mark has quite obviously
touched a nerve.
There's no doubt
about it - this is a _moment_ for Introversion.
In fact, those
nice guys at Chronic Logic filmed the whole thing
Video of Mark's acceptance speech
We were in
America for ten days in three seperate cities.
Read Part 2 : What happened
BEFORE the awards.
What happened after the awards ceremony will be
coming up in part 3 soon.