February 11, 2014 5:00 AM | Lena LeRay
We recently covered some new BitSummit details picked up on Japanese news site 4gamer, which included information about BitSummit collaborating with the local government in Kyoto to reach out to college students interested in becoming independent developers. Since then, the official BitSummit web site has also seen a major update with more details on the new BitSummit Awards and the guest speakers and performers who will be making an appearance at Bitsummit this year.
There will be a total of nine BitSummit Awards in the following categories:
Visual Exellence Award
Excellence in Game Design Award
Excellence in Sound Design Award
Möbius Strip Prize for Innovation
Media Highlight Award
BitRider Popular Selection Award
Special Achievement Award
Vermillion Gate Award
Many of these are pretty self-explanatory, though you can check out the award descriptions for more information. It's worth noting that many of the descriptions make it clear that what qualifies a game for obtaining an award doesn't necessarily have to do with polish or how close the game seems to a AAA game. The description for the Visual Excellence Award, for example, says, "The 'best' graphics aren't always the most 'excellent' graphics, so this award could really go to the most unexpected game." The Special Achievement Award is a catch-all for something that stands out in a way that doesn't fit in the other categories, and the Vermillion Gate award is essentially the best in show award.
There's a list of twelve speakers now, too, and although nothing is said about who will be speaking on what day or at what time, there is some information on what they will be talking about. Many of the talks are aimed at offering advice to Japanese indie developers, including one by a representative of Kickstarter with information about the mechanics behind successful crowdfunding campaigns. Unity 3D Japan and Epic Games will also be talking about the benefits of their engines, as they did last year, and Nigoro's Takumi Naramura is preparing a special "world debut" of La-Mulana 2. For more information about the speakers and guest performers, check out the guest speaker information page.