2011 - Multiple award winner Minecraft has now sold almost 2 million copies and spawned a worldwide cult around its charming open-world game design.
2010 - Playdead's stark monochromatic platform title Limbo is a smash hit on Xbox Live Arcade, following its summer 2010 release, picking up a 2011 Game Developers Choice Award for Best Visual Arts.
2010 - The team behind 2009 Student Showcase finalist Tag: The Power of Paint are hired by Valve to implement new paint gun mechanics into Portal 2.
2009 - The Behemoth's follow-up to Alien Hominid, the IGF-winning Castle Crashers, tops XBLA charts to critical acclaim.
2009 - IGF multi-award winner World Of Goo launches as one of the best-selling, best-reviewed WiiWare titles of all time, alongside a popular PC version.
2009 - Petri Purho's Crayon Physics Deluxe spawns an iPhone version courtesy of Hudson, plus a popular PC downloadable version.
2008 - The team behind IGF Student Showcase finalist Narbacular Drop is hired by Valve. The game is reworked into Portal and goes on to win the coveted Game Developer's Choice "Best Game" award for 2008, as well as numerous game of the year accolades.
2008 - Design Innovation winner Braid debuts on Xbox Live Arcade to significant success.
2008 - Excellence in Audio winner Audiosurf launches on Valve's Steam distribution service and goes on to become the highest selling game of February, outselling even Valve's own Orange box (including Team Fortress 2 and Game Developer's Choice "Best Game" winner Portal.)
2007 - Design Innovation winner Everyday Shooter is signed by Sony for distribution on the PlayStation 3's PlayStation Network, after Sony's John Hight plays the game at the IGF Pavilion during GDC 2007 - Everyday Shooter's Jon Mak also appears at the inaugural Independent Games Summit.
2006 - Grand prize winner Darwinia gets both digital distribution via Valve's Steam system and U.S. retail distribution from new indie label Cinemaware Marquee.
2005 - Multi award-winner Alien Hominid receives publishing deals in the U.S. (via O3 Publishing) and Europe(via Zoo Digital), much critical acclaim, and even spawns a mobile version.
2005 - Fan favorite N wins the audience award, and, as N+, releases as a hit XBLA title, as well as notable Nintendo DS and Sony PSP versions.
2004 - Innovative casual strategy game Oasis wins the web/downloadable grand prize, going on to launch on major online portals the following year.
2003 - Super X Studios' Wild Earth, a photographic game based around a worldwide safari, takes multiple prizes and subsequently becomes a motion simulator ride and eventually (in adapted form) a Wii title.
2000 - Tread Marks, created by the late Seumas McNally, which the IGF's grand prize is now named after, wins 3 major awards.
1999 - Vicarious Visions, now a major handheld / console developer, honored for Terminus.
Description: Foldit is a game in which players compete and collaborate to fold proteins, using a variety of tools to pull, shake and wiggle the protein into the correct shape. The challenge creating Foldit was to combine the power of computers and human minds to allow ordinary (or extraordinary) people to contribute to science - without needing any prior education. This was no easy task, as protein folding is extremely complex - and so is the software that tries to model it.
Most games start with a game engine. Foldit started with a heart of biochemistry. To ensure the game would produce valid scientific results, the game was built on top of the protein modeling software Rosetta. The developers of Foldit had to take software that was designed for scientists to run computation-heavy, distributed batch computations and create a real-time, interactive game. The game also had to present this complex biochemical model in a intuitive and fun way that could be understood by players.
Already, Foldit players have contributed to several important scientific results, including solving a protein structure that had stumped scientists for over a decade. With the introduction of protein design to the game, players helped to design a synthetic enzyme and improve nearly 20x over it's initial activity. Foldit enables players to tackle some of the hardest problems of our time - whether it's fighting cancer, coming up with solutions for clean energy or curing the flu. With Foldit, players have the potential to make a significant impact on the world around them.