EghtesadOnline: For the third consecutive year, the International Mobile Gaming Awards Middle East/North Africa Edition was held in Amman, Jordan, celebrating the best mobile games created by developers in the region.
This year’s main prize, the Grand Prix was awarded to Iranian company Deedema Game Studio for the title Flipping Filip, a highly-stylized puzzle adventure game with fully hand-drawn animations. Flipping Filip also won the awards for Excellence in Storytelling and Excellence in Visual Art and Design. The results were announced on Nov. 7 on imgawards.com.
Winners of IMGA MENA will be invited to compete in the Global IMGA awards to be held in March 2019 in San Francisco.
Based in Marseille, France, IMGA is one of the leading independent mobile games competitions in the world. Since its launch in 2004, IMGA has been supported and endorsed by industry leaders including Supercell, Tencent, King, ARM, and many others, Financial Tribune reported.
IMGA MENA was launched in July 2016 in collaboration with Zain, a mobile and data service provider with a commercial footprint in eight Middle Eastern and African countries and Maysalward, one of the leading firms active in the mobile games industry in the region.
This year’s nominees included games submitted by developers and studios based in 14 countries. In this round of the competitions, Jordan and Iran had the most entries, with a massive number of games submitted. Countries like the United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Tunisia were also well represented.
More than 100 games were submitted for consideration in the competition and 69 titles were shortlisted.
In addition to Flipping Filip, 11 other Iranian games were shortlisted as finalists in this round. The games were, Fisher Boy, Electron, Harmony, Mr. Crow Don’t Open the Envelope, 41148, Irregular Mobile, Colimus, Sweet Lemon, The Dark Wings 2, King of Wealth, and Magnis.
Iranian game studios won several other prizes in this round. Paeezan Game Studio won the Jury’s Honorable Mention award for Magnis; Lake Horse won three awards namely, Best Quickplay Game and Excellence in Innovation for the title O, and Excellence in Audio for the game Harmony. The Dark Wins 2 developed by Lexip Games won the title of People’s Choice Award.
Last year, three Iranian games won four out of a total of nine awards at the IMGA MENA.
“Choosing the winners was a difficult process given the incredible quality of games that were submitted,” said the jury in a joint statement. “The race was tight in a number of categories. All of the nominees showcased amazing talent and creativity across an impressive variety of genres from puzzlers to racing games. We had a great time playing them.”
“With the support of Zain and Maysalward, we have worked hard over the last three years to develop IMGA MENA into the leading platform for the rich emerging game dev talent in the region,” says Maarten Noyons, founder of IMGA.
“Be sure to play all of this year’s winning games to see all of the fresh, new experiments in games coming out of the region. This is our third year and we already see major progress in the quality of games submitted from the region. A promising future ahead and looking forward to our 4th IMGA MENA,” says Nour Khrais, founder and CEO of Maysalward.
Flipping Filip is a 2d adventure game with some action elements. It is a story-driven game which progresses as the player solves puzzles with simple mechanics involving movement and interaction.
The game is about Filip, a gloomy middle-aged man, who has two sides, and a sneeze is all it takes for him to turn into a superhero named Pilif. Initially, Filip struggles to get rid of his other side, so he can live his lonely life in peace, but an incident causes Filip to team up with Pilif against the antagonist of the story.
The gameplay involves solving linear story-driven puzzles which demand logical reasoning and exploration. Throughout the puzzles, Filip can turn into Pilif on specific occasions. While Pilif cannot be directly controlled, the player must set up the situation appropriately for Pilif, so he performs the desired actions and helps in solving the puzzles.
The game is yet to be released but according to the developer’s website, it will be available for iOS, Steam, PS4 and Nintendo Switch.