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SpaceIL Academy wins $25K at the Games for Change festival

SpaceIL Academy, developer Theorify's massively multiplayer adventure game that puts players in the role of spaceflight trainees, won the grand prize and $25,000 in the Shoot for the Moon game design challenge at the Games for Change festival, organizers announced this week.

Revealed in February, the Shoot for the Moon game design challenge tasked developers with creating a space exploration game that would help the SpaceIL team, an Israeli non-profit organization dedicated to landing an unmanned spacecraft on the moon in 2015.

Moon Rush, a game from Ohio State University development team Lunar Rocks that asks players to navigate to the moon with limited fuel while avoiding obstacles, took home the People's Choice award.

Founded in 2004 and sponsored by the Schusterman Family Foundation, Games for Change is designed to promote "social impact through digital games." The 11th annual Games for Change festival took place April 22-24 alongside the Tribeca Film Festival in New York City and will wrap up April 26.

For more on the festival and its last-minute partnership with Tribeca, be sure to read our interview with Games for Change co-president Asi Burak.