The scores for The Game Crafter's steampunk design challenge were sent out this morning. Scraps was unforuntately not in the top 10, but I was relavitely happy with the scores it recieved.
Scraps received (out of a max of 5):
Use of Theme - 3
Art - 1
Rules - 4
Rules Layout - 2
Shop Page - 4
Excitment - 3
Use of Dice - 5
As this was my first contest, I was kind blown away by the amount artwork had an inpact on the score. I understand that good art can add a lot to a game, but I'm slightly saddened by the fact that, like "Splat!", people won't even try it if it doesn't look good. Graphics-whore rantingaside, I'd like do to a quick analysis on these scores.
For use of theme, I can see why it got a 3. While my game had an interesting steampunk twist, the mechanics were not really built to the theme, but clearly the other way around.
For art, I'm glad I didn't get a 0 I suppose, but I'm also disapointed that the score was lowered simply due to the lack of art, rather than the quality of the artwork that was there. My point being that my game didn't require art, which was, in my opinion, the beauty of it.
For rules, the 4 makes sense because while being interesting, well written, and "with a twist"... it still relies on the standard "set collection" mechanic that apparently a lot of submissions used for this contest. I'm happy the judge was able to see the unique aspects of it.
The rules layout score I don't totally understand, but my guess is that it again has to do with the lack of artwork or explanitory pictures in the rules. The rules are easy to read, but they don't "look good".
The shop page got a 4, which I'm very happy with the art I received from Paul Hazel, but its unclear to me what would have boosted it up to a 5. There was no mention of the shop page in the judge's comments.
Excitment's 3 makes me think that the judge didn't actually play the game... not that I would expect him to with so many games to judge (I believe he only plays the top 10). I'm happy with the score of three though, because it means that he at least saw the potential from just reading the rules.
The use of dice makes me the happiest, at 5, because it means that I hit the nail on the head with the actual game mechanics. That confirms, to me anyway, that the game is good and that as a mostly mechanicly designed game, I did a good job.
What I've learned though, is that for future contests, ensure that there's a skilled artist behind the work as well. Speaking of which, I wish there were contests for our upcoming games "Train Wranglers" and "Treefolk", who are being drawn by Celes Chang and Gabby Myers respectively. Keep a watch out for these gorgeous (and also fun, just in case anyone cares about that too) games, coming out "soon"!