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Here Are the IGF Juries for the Audio, Visual Art, and Student Game Awards at GDC 2023

The IGF Awards are gearing up, and here is the second round of jurors who will be judging our amazing selection of games for GDC 2023.

Now that the first round of IGF judging is complete, the Game Developers Conference is thrilled to unveil the second group of jurors for the 2023 IGF Awards (check out the first group of jurors here). The IGF juries are made up of experts in specific disciplines—who will play, evaluate, and discuss the standout games entered in the 2023 Independent Games Festival competition.

Here are the jurors who will be judging games in the Excellence in Audio Award, the Excellence in Visual Art Award, and the Best Student Game Award categories:

Excellence in Audio

Simon Byron: Simon Byron is Director of Publishing at Yogscast Games.

Juan OrjuelaJuan Orjuela is a musician and game developer from Bogotá, Colombia who specializes in interactive composition and sound design for video games and experimental audiovisual installations. Juan is now established in Cologne, Germany where he co-founded the independent game studio Ludopium.

Daniel RosenfeldDaniel Rosenfeld is most known for having composed the ever-present game Minecraft, and is currently working hard at Davey Wreden’s new studio Ivy Road on their debut game.

Anna Kipnis: Anna Kipnis is best known for her work at Double Fine Productions on Psychonauts, Brütal Legend, Costume Quest, Once Upon a Monster, The Cave, Dear Leader, Broken Age, Headlander, and Psychonauts 2. She has also collaborated with indie studio Santa Ragione on Final Candidation and Wheels of Aurelia. She was the founding organizer of Molyjam (2012-2013) and has served in the IGF technical jury, and the Global Game Jam theme committee. She is currently working on ways to use machine learning for delightful player experiences at Google Research.

M Boch: [email protected] is an associate professor in game design at the NYU Game Center. They also served for over a decade at Harmonix Music Systems as a designer and creative director. They are presently working as an independent game developer and sound designer, having notably crafted the BAFTA-winning ambitious music system and sound design of Ape Out.

Isaac Io Schankler: Isaac Io Schankler is the composer for award-winning indie games like Ladykiller in a Bind, Analogue: A Hate Story, and the upcoming Skategirl Destroys the Universe. They are an associate professor of music at Cal Poly Pomona. 

Samantha Kalman: Samantha Kalman is a game designer, musician, and technologist with over 15 years of game industry experience. Her design work includes indie games like Sentris to AAA projects like Apex Legends.

Excellence in Visual Art

Chelsea HashChelsea Hash is a designer and artist, known for her work on such projects as What Remains of Edith Finch, Solar Ash and the Radiohead Kid Amnesia Exhibition. She’s been active in the interactive creative space since 2005 on a wide variety of projects from handheld games for children, academic research, and real-time visuals for concerts.

Marielle KhoMarielle Kho is the lead environment artist on Darkest Dungeon 2 at Red Hook Studios. She has over a decade of experience as a 3D artist in games, film, and television. She loves making costumes, painting with watercolors, and watching horror movies year-round.

Aura TrioloAura Triolo has been animating indie games for over a decade and yelling online on twitter for almost as long. She's currently animation lead at Ivy Road.

Jesse TurnerJesse "The Drawbarian" Turner is an artist based out of Vancouver. He's been working for 15 years in the games industry on titles like Griftlands and Viking Squad and you can find him and his crazy characters on Twitter.

Greg LobanovGreg Lobanov is an indie game designer known for making acclaimed titles like Wandersong and Chicory: A Colorful Tale. He was born with the exquisite ability to know exactly which art is the good art.

Laura YilmazLaura Yilmaz is an animation director and art director for commercials, animation, and games, and currently art director at Sirvo Studios. Her work has screened in global festivals including Festival d'Annecy, Ottawa International Animation Festival, and Animafest Zagreb, and taken top prizes at the Clio awards and ADC Awards. She is an alumna of the Sundance New Frontier Story Lab and Stugan indie games accelerator.

Amanda WilliamsAmanda Williams illustrates strange botanicals and specializes in 2D environments. She contributed to Spider: The Secret of Bryce Manor, Waking Mars, Spider: Rite of the Shrouded Moon, and Where the Water Tastes Like Wine, among others.

Best Student Game

José P. ZagalJosé P. Zagal is faculty at the University of Utah's top-ranked game program. He wrote Ludoliteracy and edited Videogame Ethics Reader, Role-Playing Game Studies, and Game Design Snacks, which was authored by students. José was honored as a distinguished game scholar by the digital games research association (DiGRA) and is a fellow in the Higher Education Videogame Alliance (HEVGA).

Jeff Petriello: Jeff Petriello teaches Game Design at the NYU Game Center. He also works as a producer on the Games Team at the New York Times, where he works on games like Wordle and the Crossword. In 2022, his releases included Sam Barlow's IMMORTALITY and a 2nd edition of The Pasta Tarot, a queer Italian-American themed deck for delicious divination.

Lindsay GraceLindsay Grace is Knight Chair in Interactive Media and director of the University of Miami Master of Fine Arts in Interactive Media. He is Vice President for the Higher Education Video Game Alliance, 2019 recipient of the Games for Change Vanguard award, designer/developer/artist behind scores of indie games and author of several books including Doing Things with Games, Social Impact through Design, Love and Affection in Games: A Design Primer, and Black Game Studies.

Andy Nealen: Andy Nealen is a game creator and scholar, artist and music maker, computer scientist, architect, engineer, and professor of cinematic arts and computer science at USC. He co-hosts the "Eggplant: The Secret Lives of Games" podcast, makes music as OCVEE, and is a member of Hemisphere Games.

AP Thomson: AP Thomson is a designer and programmer who has worked on numerous games including Fortune-499, Swap Sword, Multibowl, and Beglitched (winner of the 2016 IGF Student Award). AP is currently working with Beglitched co-creator Jenny Jiao Hsia on their upcoming game Consume Me

Richard Perrin: Richard Perrin is creator of the white chamber and Kairo. He's worked in indie, VR and AAA and his main focus is exploring interactive narrative.

Carol Mertz: Carol Mertz is a Senior Game Designer at Exploding Kittens, and founder of independent game studio Insatiable Cycle. Having worked for over a decade in interactive arts and media, her portfolio of work centers around creating and supporting multidisciplinary projects that expand our perspective, help us learn about ourselves and each other, and challenge the typical boundaries of play.

Head here to check out all entries in the 2023 Independent Games Festival. Competition finalists will be announced early next year, with the winners announced at the IGF Awards on Wednesday, March 22 (with a simultaneous broadcast on GDC Twitch) at the Game Developers Conference, which takes place at the Moscone Convention Center in San Francisco.

GDC returns to San Francisco this March 20-24, 2023, and registration is now open! For more information, be sure to visit our website and follow the #GDC23 hashtag on social media.

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GDC, gdc23, gdc 2023, Game Developers Conference, IGF, igf23, Independent Games Festival, indie, award
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