swissnex Prize for Swiss Game Designers

January 26, 2016

Enter a world of muted watercolor backgrounds broken by streams of white and black, diminished only through cooperative play. This is the game of Schlicht.

Last year, Pro Helvetia the Swiss Arts Council announced the third annual Call for Projects: Swiss Games, a competition for young game designers to accelerate their success and that of the Swiss game design industry.

Now, the winners have been announced. And the swissnex San Francisco prize goes to… Team Schlicht!

Schlicht, by Dominik Haas, Christian Schmidhalter, and Don Schmocker, is an atmospheric and cooperative puzzle game. For winning the swissnex prize, the recently graduated Zurich University of the Arts students receive a month-long residency in San Francisco, startup acceleration services, high-level introductions, and support during the March 2016 Game Developers Conference (GDC)—the world’s largest game industry event. They’ll also be invited to pitch their company to industry insiders alongside other European gaming startups.

Schlicht actually won two prizes in the Call for Projects—they also received an award carrying a 15,000 Swiss franc prize for best original sound composition from the FONDATION SUISA. Both awards were announced at the Ludicious – Zürich Game Festival in January.

The Call for Projects jury included Urs Schnell, Director of FONDATION SUISA, and Frank von Niederhäusern, a cultural journalist, who honored the score (composed by Michael Barengo) for its composition and function in the game. The music supports the gaming experience and is clearly related to its title, Schlicht, meaning plain.

In December, the team also won the Ubisoft BlueByte Newcomer Award.

swissnex San Francisco is looking forward to hosting the young game designers in March for GDC!