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  • Joseph Siehl

Production II Blog | Champlain Gamefest

Introduction:

On April 13, 2019, roughly half of VCB attended the Champlain Games Festival. This festival is an annual event that occurs in Essex Junction, VT, where various indie game developers are encouraged to come and exhibit their games. Our team was invited to attend this time around, and as such, we chose to show off Snowball Showdown to various attendees. Due to time constraints, I was unfortunately unable to attend, but our team's success at the event excited me too much to not post about it.


What do I mean by success? Well...

 

Success at the Games Festival:

The five team members who attended the Champlain Games Festival. From left to right: Chris McCammon, Aiden O'Connor, Max Blake, Makayla Montes, and Zach Phillips.

Throughout the event, one of our producers, Chris McCammon, along with the other four members of the team who attended the festival kept us up to date on Snowball Showdown's reception and whether or not the game functioned properly. Shortly after noon, our other producer, Max Blake, informed us that "[p]eople [were] coming in waves to play the game," making it clear that Snowball Showdown was popular with attendees. Additionally, we learned that the game was functioning without any major errors - something that relieved the programmers who, like myself, were unable to make it to the festival. This continued from just after noon until around 4:00, at which point Chris dropped a bombshell.


The trophy we won at the Champlain Games Fest.

At 3:56 PM, we received a message from Chris containing two words: "WE WON." Most of us were pretty confused; after all, we didn't yet know what we'd won, though we were pretty excited at the prospect of winning something. Less than a minute later, Chris explained that due to its popularity with audience members, Snowball Showdown had won the audience's choice for the best game at the festival. Our team was ecstatic. We'd hoped that we'd do well or at least garner interest, but the idea of actually winning an award seemed utterly alien. We were, after all, up against some very impressive titles, such as the senior game Arachnotron.


Winning the festival was thus an incredible achievement, and it showed us that Snowball Showdown has a massive amount of potential that none of us had really expected. It also showed that people from all age groups can enjoy our game, given that our booth saw people from ages 7 to 70-ish. This made us much more confident about selling our game on the Oculus Store and possibly even receiving permission to release on the Oculus Quest.

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