- [So, IndieGames.com parent Think Services is bringing back IGF Mobile again this year, after a neat first year, and there's a few good new things. Submission is now free, there's $20k in prizes again, we're looking forward to seeing lots of iPhone entries alongside the cellphone, PSP, and DS indie/homebrew entries, and there's a 'Next Great Mobile Game' live pitch contest added. Tell your handheld-centric buddies, plz.]

Submissions are now open for the second Independent Games Festival Mobile, celebrating creativity and innovation on handheld platforms from the iPhone through the cellphone, PSP, and DS - with finalists being showcased at GDC 2009, and a new 'Next Great Mobile Game' live pitch category added.

Following the success of the first IGF Mobile, a sister event to the main IGF competition, the second year of the festival will feature independently developed handheld games for all mobile devices including cell phones, Apple's iPhone, Nintendo DS, Sony PSP, and Windows Mobile devices.

The competition will include a new category for developers to pitch new ideas at the GDC Mobile-hosted award ceremony. IGF Mobile submissions are being accepted at the official website through November 17, 2008; finalists will be announced in January 2009.

NVIDIA, manufacturer of the Tegra family of applications processors for mobile devices returns this year as a Founding and Platinum Sponsor. In keeping with the company’s philosophy of encouraging and fostering innovation in mobile game development, the company will support "The Next Great Mobile Game" competition.

This prize category, in a change from the traditional awards, will be accepting five finalists on the basis of a written pitch and an in-progress prototype. The finalists will pitch their product in detail and show completed prototypes at the IGF Mobile Awards, where an audience of peers will select the winner.

The new award joins returning categories such as the $10,000 Best Game award, Innovation in Mobile Game Design, and the awards for audio, art direction, design and technology.

Finalist games, displayed in the IGF Mobile Pavilion at the Game Developers Conference in March 2009, will compete for $20,000 in prizes, including awards for innovation and execution in mobile game development, as well as the coveted $10,000 Grand Prize. Winners will be announced at a ceremony during GDC Mobile, and will also be showcased during the main IGF Awards, presented at the Game Developers Choice Awards ceremony.

“The rise of rich 3D mobile devices such as the iPhone and smartphones – as well as the PSP and DS - are starting to make all kinds of intriguing independent gaming possibilities possible,” said Mathew Kumar, Content Director, IGF Mobile. “We look forward to seeing some of the top indie handheld content that the festival will draw.”

Submissions to the competition are now open to all independent developers working on mobile platforms, including game development for cell phones, iPhone, PSP, DS, and other handheld devices. The important dates for IGF Mobile in 2008-2009 are as follows:

August 11th, 2008: Submissions Open
November 17th, 2008: Submission Deadline
January 26th, 2009: Finalists Announced
March 23rd-27th, 2009: Game Developer's Conference 2009
March 24th, 2009: IGF Mobile Awards Ceremony
March 25th-27th, 2009: IGF Mobile Pavilion @ GDC
March 25th, 2009: IGF Awards Ceremony

For a complete list of IGF Mobile 2008 information, please visit the official IGF Mobile website.