Kiwi Game Starter 2018
7 June 2018

Entries for the New Zealand Game Developers Association startup programme for interactive games businesses, the Kiwi Game Starter, are now open! Potential entrants should prepare their playable prototypes and business/marketing plans for submission via the submission form.

The deadline for submissions is 5PM Monday, July 2nd.

What is Kiwi Game Starter?

Kiwi Game Starter is the NZGDA’s annual game development award and startup programme for interactive games businesses and startups. Each year there is a prize pool including financial, legal, and mentorship support for the winning teams. The competition aims to support more games coming out of NZ by helping remove barriers and reduce risk when working on new projects. The competition provides mentorship and resources to finalists to allow them to meet their full potential.

Five finalists will be chosen to present to the judging panel before the NZ Game Developers Conference at the SkyCity Convention Centre on Wednesday, August 1st. Presentations must be contained to 10 minutes, followed by 10 minutes of judges’ questions.

The key areas the submissions will be judged on are originality, technical and creative innovation. Commercial prospects will also be judged based on the information provided in the completed business and marketing planning templates provided. Games can be developed for any digital platform: mobile, PC, or console.

Each entrant must be an individual, or a group/company based in New Zealand aged at least 18 years of age or older, and members of the NZGDA. The game cannot be available for sale or pre-sale at the time of submission, however, it is acceptable for it to have been provided as a reward as part of a crowd-funding or charitable campaign.

What are we looking for in entries?

  1. A playable demo that gives the judges an understanding of the core of the game. This does not need to be feature complete, but it should provide confidence in the concept and ability of the team to execute.
  2. A business and marketing plan based on the provided template that explains what the game is, a prospective timeline for the project, and where funding is going to be allotted among other details.

What is up for grabs?

This years winner will receive a financial support package of $10,000 ($5,000 initially, with an additional $5,000 upon meeting an agreed milestone). The runner-up will receive $5,000.

Both winner and runner-up will receive mentoring from some of New Zealand’s most successful game developers, as well connecting them to Kiwi Game Starter finalists from past and present.

Further prizes may be announced while the competition is running, so get to work on your entries!

How to Enter

  1. Complete the KGS2018 Business and Marketing plan template, and the KGS 2018 Supporting Data template
  2. Enter by completing the submission form.

Terms and conditions apply and can be viewed here.

If you have further questions, please contact Dylan West at

More information available on the KGS website.