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Next year's DICE awards will honor innovation, 'big ideas and artistic risks'

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The annual DICE Awards, the video game industry award show that closes out the DICE (Design, Innovate, Communicate, Entertain) Summit, will add two new awards that seek to honor innovative technology and small teams that take on big risks with innovative gameplay.

The 18th annual awards ceremony will hand out the two new awards, named the Technical Impact Award and DICE Sprite Award, on Thursday, Feb. 5, 2015, organizers announced this week. The awards "reflect the evolving landscape of the games industry," a release from the Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences says.

Here's how the AIAS describes its two new awards:

The Technical Impact Award celebrates unique innovations that contribute to the ongoing  progress of interactive media. Honorees may come from various facets of the industry, which may include but are not limited to software, hardware, and community.

The D.I.C.E. Sprite Award will be awarded to a game having disproportionate resources for development and exposure (as compared to AAA titles), represent a higher degree of risk tolerance and advances our industry with innovative gameplay and experiences.

With the introduction of the Technical Impact Award and DICE Sprite Award, the AIAS will hand out 25 awards at next year's event. Submissions for the 18th annual DICE Awards are now open. The AIAS charges a $1,000 submission fee per title, and nominees must be "in good standing with the Academy."

This year's big winner at the 2014 DICE Awards was Naughty Dog's The Last of Us, which walked away with 10 awards, including Game of the Year.

The 2015 DICE Summit will take place Feb. 3-5 at the Hard Rock Hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada.