The Xyzzymposium Returns

The Xyzzymposium is returning! The aim of the Xyzzymposium is to provide in depth analysis of the finalist entries for each of the XYZZY Award categories. It was last held in 2015-2016 for the 2014 XYZZY Awards. The goal of the Xyzzymposium is still as it was initially described:

A lot of the critical writing in the IF world comes in the forms of general reviews; that’s great, but we wanted to see more in-depth writing that considered games through specific foci.

The XYZZYs have no cash prizes or shiny trophies, no red-carpet parties; all we really offer is the respect of your peers, and a slightly more prominent mark in the history of the medium. Both of these become a little more concrete if they’re combined with in-depth critical attention. The Xyzzymposium isn’t intended to be a triumphal march; we’re not here to lavish praise on anointed champions. The purpose of the Xyzzymposium is to show that we’re taking a work seriously enough to wrestle with it.

We’re going to be covering the 2017 Awards (but if we get enough writers we may take a stab at covering the missing years). Writers are being contacted now, with the intention of publishing the reviews throughout the second half of September.

Taking on the mantle of Xyzzymposiarch from Sam Kabo Ashwell, this year the organiser is Joey Jones. You may know Joey for such games as The Chinese Room, Andromeda Dreaming, Sub Rosa, or Trials of the Thief-Taker. 

2 thoughts on “The Xyzzymposium Returns

  1. Daniel Talsky

    Hey! I have some XYZZY questions, and there’s not a page with general information on the contest so I was hoping you could provide me with some more info, or point me in the right direction.

    I have a game in the IFComp right now, and I’m curious about its eligibility for XYZZY. As I understand it, almost any game entered in IFComp (and has an entry in the IFDB) is eligible, and thus, automatically entered in XYZZY, and doesn’t need to be nominated in any way. Is that true?

    I’ve been reading the rules and can’t quite figure out: if the game is in IFComp, are we allowed to expand the game by the end of 2018, and have that be the “official 2018 release” of the game?

    There’s a single canonical page for all the past competitions, as well as for the Xyzzymposium, but there isn’t really a clear single page for the competition rules (for authors as much as judges). Is there some way I can help you put something like that together?

    Thanks for your precious time answering,
    Daniel

    Reply
  2. Sam Kabo Ashwell

    No, that’s a good point, and entirely fair.

    As I understand it, almost any game entered in IFComp (and has an entry in the IFDB) is eligible, and thus, automatically entered in XYZZY, and doesn’t need to be nominated in any way. Is that true?

    The eligibility rules, and the nature of the Comp, make it basically certain that every Comp game will be eligible for the XYZZYs – barring something very unusual like a Comp game somehow being removed from the Archive between the Comp and the New Year. This might change in future years, but as far as Urs is concerned, no further action is required.

    I’ve been reading the rules and can’t quite figure out: if the game is in IFComp, are we allowed to expand the game by the end of 2018, and have that be the “official 2018 release” of the game?

    Absolutely. However, this does not mean that voters will automatically have played the latest version – XYZZY voting is based on games you’ve played in the previous year, and we don’t host the games or require that voters replay everything right before voting. So some people might vote based on the Comp version, and some on the new version.

    That’s a good point about the rules – I’ll put together a rules summary before the Awards start rolling out in the New Year.

    Reply

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