38 Studios has announced the first annual Massachusetts Game Challenge, a game design contest open to students at Massachusetts-area universities.

To compete, students in game design programs must form teams of two or three members, preferably across multiple disciplines such as engineering, art and marketing, to build a playable videogame featuring Munch, the 38 Studios mascot, and his alter-ego Mean Munch. Each team will be required to submit a signed copy of the contest rules, a completed submissions forms and a DVD or CD-ROM copy of the game. Contest winners will receive $3,000 per team member for first place, $2,000 per member for second place and $1,000 each for third place.

“The Boston area is a growing hotbed of game development,” said 38 Studios founder Curt Schilling, better known for his 11-2 postseason record and two World Series rings with the Boston Red Sox. “This contest encourages students to demonstrate their talents, as well as raise awareness of what it takes to release a product into the competitive videogame industry.”

Submissions must be received by February 18, 2008. Full contest rules and other information is available at the 38 Studios website.

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