Dream.Build.Play design competition announces its 40 finalists

Dream.Build.Play design competition announces its 40 finalists.

Dream.Build.Play, a game design competition sponsored and run by Microsoft, announced its top 40 finalists today.

Competitors use the Windows Phone Software Development Kit (SDK) 7.1 to create an original game for Xbox 360 or Windows Phone. Entrants must submit a copy of the game as well as a game summary and video demonstrating its functionality. Each game is judged on its innovation and creativity, production quality, and how effectively the game creates a positive player experience, or "fun factor."

Finalists include tower-defense/shooter hybrid Graveyard Shift, South African-developed Ninja Crash featuring parachuting ninjas, and platformer Snails in which players must build paths to guide AI-controlled snails through its levels. All 40 games can be previewed at the program's official website.

The top finalist in the Xbox 360 category will receive a $40,000 prize, while the Windows Phone winner gets $20,000. All forty participants have a shot at a monetary prize in pool totaling $112,500. Previous grand prize winners include Dust: An Elysian Tail.

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