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Golden Arbutus preview

The Golden Arbutus – The TCTC Game Design of the year.

Presented by Panda Games Manufacturing.

The Golden Arbutus was created to highlight and reward the best games featured in the TCTC Proto-Alley.

Golden Arbutus Award includes

  • A plaque commemorating the award
  • $500 cash prize
  • $500 credit towards producing your game with Panda Game Manufacturing
  • Use of the Golden Arbutus logo for promoting your game.

A maximum of 50 entries will be allowed on a first come, first serve basis. From these entries, 5-6 will be chosen to be carried to the final. At this point we will ask for a playable prototype to be played and evaluated by the various jury members.


  • The contest is open to all designers except Terminal City Tabletop Convention staff, jury members and their respective families.
  • All entries must be received by October 13, 2017.
  • Only one design entry per designer or design team per year. ie: your name can only be present on one entry either a co-design or solo design. Choose your best design!
  • Co-designs are allowed. At least one of the design team must be present at TCTC.
  • An entry fee of $10 must be paid via paypal upon game design entry.
  • Entries are for board, card and dice games.
  • Finalists competing for the Golden Arbutus must be in able to attend the Terminal City Tabletop Convention (TCTC) and have their game available to be played by TCTC attendees in the Proto-Alley. All finalists will be given a free table in the TCTC Proto-Alley.
  • Entries must be original designs that are unpublished and never featured on Kickstarter or other crowdfunding websites, successful or otherwise (as of date of submission).
  • No expansions or licensed properties.
  • No solo games.
  • Play time must be under 3 hours.
  • All designs remain the intellectual property of the designers.
  • By submitting your design for consideration for Golden Arbutus, you agree to not hold Terminal City Tabletop Convention or its jury members, contest sponsors or participants liable for any perceived intellectual property infringement. Rules for the Golden Arbutus may change or alter at any time during the competition.

Required for Submission

  • A short video (5 min) max where the designers describe their game. Included in your pitch should be a concise rule summary (omit rule exceptions, etc.), a general flow of the game play and what makes your game special. Please do not stress over video production. Videos are submitted via your own site or public site (YouTube or Vimeo).

An example video can be found here

  • A PDF of your full rule set, including player aids if necessary.
  • Finalists will be announced on November 30, 2017. If your design is selected as a finalist, a playable prototype of the entered design will be required. This must be submitted to TCTC by December 16, 2017. All prototypes will be returned to the designers for play during the convention.

Initial Evaluation of videos and rulesets

  • Screening with be conducted by TCTC staff who will review and score each entry on a set criteria.
  • The top 5-6 entries will then be passed on to the Golden Arbutus jury committee to be evaluated as finalists.

Jury evaluation

  • The jury will be comprised of 4 committee members who will play-test and evaluating the design finalists.
  • The jury will be assessing eight factors with each one being ranked 1 to 10.
Game Mechanics
Rules/ Ease of learning
Game decisions
Player down time
Overall Impression

Determining the winner

  • The total scores from all jurors (8-80 points each) will be tallied up and the game with the highest total will be declared the winner.
  • Winner will be announced on March 25, 2018 at 4 pm. The Sunday and final day of the convention.
  • All finalists will be given a record of their scores and jurors comments/feedback.


Past Winners

Winner of the 2017 Golden Arbutus

LepreContractors by Adam Wyse