General Contest Rules & FAQ

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General Contest Rules & FAQ

This page was made as a reference guide for many of RMRK's contests, or questions regarding RMRK contests. Some of these rules or FAQs will not pertain to certain contests. If that is the case, those certain rules/FAQs will be stated otherwise in that contest's home thread.

If you feel like something should be added to this reference guide, feel free to contact a staff member, or (if you have access) you may post in this thread.


This is likely the most popular area of discussion for the contests. It includes resources that range from artwork and music to scripts and eventing systems.

  • You may NOT create resources for your game prior to the contest starting point. If you have previously created resources before the contest, and wish to use them for your contest game, then that is permitted. However, you must hold off working on those resources until your starting contest date.
  • You are allowed to use public resources when making your project.
  • Private resources are tricky. If you've purchased these resources, then you may have to encrypt your game when you submit it (unless the seller states otherwise). If these resources are made by someone else for your game, then they MUST be considered a part of your team.
  • You are allowed to gather resources before your contest start date, as long as you do not input them into RPG Maker or edit them at all. All you can do is find and download them, pretty much.


Many contests will permit the use of teams. If your contest doesn't, then disregard this section.

  • Your team may NOT have more than 3 members. This changes depending on the contest, but most GIAW contests will only permit 3. Obviously, this limit does not stand for Guilds contests.
  • You may NOT have anyone (other than teammates) personally contribute to your contest game. The only exception to this so far is Testers, which are permitted.

Submitting Projects

When submitting a project, you must compress your project and upload it to whatever uploader you choose. You are responsible for uploading your project.

Next, send the download link with your project to the contest host (the person who made the contest thread). They will then distribute the project to the judges.

  • Remember that you can NOT release your game publicly until the results are announced, and the judging period is over. Doing so will disqualify your project.
  • It is recommended that you do NOT encrypt your project when submitting it. This is so the judges can remove any gameplay-hindering bugs and continue to score your game. If you must, you can send in your game encrypted, but keep in mind that the judges can only rate what they can play. If there are any bugs that threaten the progress of the game, your score could significantly drop.
  • If you cannot finish your game, you can always submit a demo. Sometimes, your odds are better if you stick with a demo, rather than dropping out or rushing the rest of your game.
  • Be sure to spend a quality amount of time bug testing. There's a lot of points to be lost on a few simple mistakes.
  • When uploading your project, keep in mind that it may take some time for the upload. Be sure that you are giving yourself a comfortable amount of time to upload and submit your project.

Dates & Times

Some contests may require you to submit your time zone [GMT]. This is so that we can accurately gauge what time to expect your game to be submitted. This is also so that you can start your game at your time, so everyone has the same amount of time to work on their games.

An example of an acceptable time zone would be [GMT -6] (central time). You can use this page to determine what your GMT is. Please keep in mind that some countries will adjust their GMT to match daylight savings times.

When hosting a contest or making note of the contestants GMT's, this converter may prove useful.

  • Keep in mind that you are responsible for submitting your time zone, otherwise you may be listed under the default GMT. That could give you less time to work on your project, so don't forget to let us know what your GMT is!
  • You MUST submit your game by 12AM (midnight) on the day that your project is due. This will go by whatever YOUR time is.

Example: If your project is due on (Sunday) July 28th, you will have to submit your project at midnight when the day BECOMES July 28th. Or, to be safe, you can always submit it at (Saturday) July 27th. (Example from GIAW XI dates).

  • You are permitted to start working on your project at 12AM (midnight) on the day that your contest starts. This also goes by whatever YOUR time is.

Scoring Guidelines

These are the usual 4 guidelines. Many contests will add on their own special guidelines.

1. Polish

Visuals and audio. This is all about the look and sound of your game. You don't always have to have the most special graphics to make this work. Just use what you have constructively, even if it's the simple RTP.

2. Playability

Gameplay and general mechanics. This area can be deadly if you don't bug test frequently. If your game is well-constructed (mechanics), you will earn points here. If your game has a lot of bugs, then you will lose points here.

3. Ingenuity

Originality and story. This is pretty straight-forward. You will earn points for having a great story here, and it doesn't hurt to be original. This doesn't always mean having the most unique idea out there. Sometimes, you can use something simple but expand it into something more complex and beautiful.

4. Entertainment

The fun factor. "Will the judges have fun playing my game"? That's what you need to ask yourself here.


There's a lot of information here on participating, so here's a little section for the judges.

  • Many contests have a limit of 5 judges.
  • When applying to be a judge, please take into account our right to refuse you. Judges must be committed and trustworthy. If you are fairly unknown around the forums, your chances of becoming a judge may be slim.
  • Obviously, you are expected to score games objectively. Do not take personal opinions of the contestants into account when judging.
  • There will be a set time for the judging period to end (usually after 2 weeks). Sometimes this will change, depending on the number of submitted projects or personal factors for a judge.
  • If you must withdraw from being a judge, please contact the contest host asap.


This is for other rules and FAQs, that don't necessarily need their own section.

  • Many contests will only permit the use of RPG Maker programs, unless stated otherwise.
  • Please create your contest games in English only. If you are not fluent with English writing, the judges are expected to be fair and not place an emphasis on that area.