Hand Eye Society

WordPlay 2014 Photos and Awards

WordPlay 2014 was our second year at the palatial Toronto Reference Library, attracting over 150 folks interested in writerly games.  Here Keith McNally is introducing…

…Andrew Plotkin, the Boston-based interactive fiction luminary who discussed his new game Hadean Lands.  (Stream intro, talk & q&a / Download mp3)

Coffee! A Misunderstanding was very well received, with both “puppets” and “drivers” from the audience performed an interactive play designed by Deirdra “Squinky” Kiai.

We showcased 25 of the most interesting writerly games — this one requires the players to write on their body. Another Porpentine game was debuted for the first time ever, catch a clip of the audience playing it here.

After ChoiceScript was demoed by Jason Stevan Hill, Aaron Reed (pictured above), gamemaker and author of Creating Interactive Fiction With Inform 7, did a great 15 minute tool demo of Inform 7. Texture, a touchscreen friendly interactive fiction writing tool, was released at WordPlay.

The creators of Dungeons of Fayte did a great talk about the accidental and intentional narrative aspects of their cult jam game. In their introduction, Miguel Sternberg and Damian Sommer coined the term “Faytelike”.

And our closing ceremony included our first awards, with WordPlay juror D. F. McCourt being aided by envelope rippers Randal Ball, Will O’Neill, Sarah Chu and Alexandre Parizeau.


Freshest Prose: Fuck Everything
Best Mechanic: Nested
Most Unique World: With Those We Love Alive
Most Engaging: 80 Days

Congratulations to all our WordPlay 2014 Showcase games!

80 Days (inkle / Meg Jayanth)
A Dark Room (Amirali Rajan)
Always Sometimes Monsters (Vagabond Dog)
Begscape (Porpentine)
Choice of the Deathless (Max Walker Gladstone / Choice of Games)
Colorado Red (Alice Maz)
Coming Out Simulator (ncase)
Consensual Torture Simulator (merritt kopas)
Elegy for a Dead World (Dejobaan Games)
Fuck Everything (Lena NW)
Horsemaster (Tom Mchenry )
Ice-Bound (Aaron A. Reed and Jacob Garbe)
Invisible Parties (Sam Kabo Ashwell)
Loose Strands (Darned Sock Productions)
Memoriam (Lee Williams)
Nested (Orteil)
Paradise (Devine Lu Linvega)
PRY (Tender Claws)
Redshirt (The Tiniest Shark / Positech)
Sext Adventure (Kara Stone and Nadine Lessio)
She Who Fights Monsters (Gaming Pixie)
Silent Age (House on Fire)
Thomas Was Alone (Mike Bithell)
Three-Fourths Home (Bracket Games)
With Those We Love Alive (Porpentine, Brenda Neotenomie)

Produced with the support of the City of Toronto through the Toronto Arts Council.

Festival Director: Jim Munroe
Festival identity: Beehive Design
Gamemaker Liaison: Will O’Neill
Volunteer Coordinator: Sarah Chu
Promotions Manager: Randal Ball
2014 Showcase Jurors: Emily Short, Leigh Alexander, Paolo Pedercini, D. F. McCourtLiz Albi & Susan Patrick

Photos: Chris Rabacal, Tanya Kan, Steven Carino. Audio capture: Arman Aghabli from Built to Play podcast.