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Nokia promotes N-Gage innovation with €70,000 bait

Only existing games developers need apply

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Nokia is looking for new concepts in mobile phone gaming, and has launched a competition with €70,000 in prizes for the best games concept. However, it is limiting entry to those already in the games business.

The Mobile Games Innovation Challenge is open to companies involved in designing or developing games, and comes with a top prize of €40,000 alone. Submissions are invited in the form of a text description along with, optionally, graphics and videos demonstrating the game play.

But even the top prize money won't pay for a game to be developed - a simple mobile phone game would eat through a large chunk of €40,000 in the design phase. But, the competition is being run by Nokia Publishing and there is mention of a possible development contract too.

It seems likely that Nokia is hoping to attract some of the console games development companies, in the hope that a chunk of money and potential development contract will bring new minds to explore the future of mobile gaming. With a simple description being the only submission requirement, and companies able to enter as often as they like, it's possible that more than a few lunch hours will be spent brainstorming ideas.

N-Gage is going to need some truly innovative games if it's going to stand up as a hand-held gaming platform, and avoid its software incarnation following its hardware namesake into obscurity. ®

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