Without reading any other posts or giving this much thought. I think it would be great if capable people of BYOND pooled together to create "significant" prizes for a "significant" and worthwhile challenge.

Contest idea for significant prizes...
#1. A pool of proven "experts" is made available. Captains if you will.
#2. People signup into a general pool to participate. What if an entry fee of 5$ were required? This ensures all particiapants have a valid account which takes care of the payout problem.
#3. Game submissions based on competition rules is open.
#4. The captains pick which game design they will champion and get the designer along with it.
#5. The captains then pick their team (devs and artists).
#6. The teams are posted and the start date follows very soon after.
#7. The winner is based on multiple factors.
- Judges (x%), Gamer Votes (y%), and Unique (and new?) Visitor Count (z%). Perhaps we can enlist other groups (internal or external to byond) to contribute to the overall vote. This will actually bring a lot of attention to byond? Especially if the prize pool is attention getting enough. Project owners will need to help solicit votes which generates more byond visibility.

Im too short on time to think this trhgouh properly as Im running out the door.

modify/edit as needed.
If the contest is for a game that is worth hosting, then perhaps providing some free (quality) hosting resources is apropos. When I'm done my soopah-sweet game, give me a rawking UNIX server connected to a fat pipe. :P
Alright, back in the saddle...

As far as prizes go... I think cash is out of the question unless you can get an "impressive" amount. We need a way to get funding (backing of someone with money) or come up with some other creative method.

My first creative thought...
If BYOND accepted 25$ cash to post your game on the front page for a month, we could do something like that.

1st prize - 3 Months on front page
2nd prize - 2 Months on front page
3rd prize - 1 Month on front page

Other things can go with but that would be neat.
@Lewzer: I doubt many Casual games would require dedicated 24/7 hosting.

@Pmitch: It'd have to be one hell of a good game.

@CalusCORPS: The purchased prize is an item of your choice which is valued at your prize levels amount.

@Fizzy, Sliced Death: Hell no.

@DarkCampaigner: I like your style. The gift card thing is a nice touch, and definitely worth looking into.

@Tsfreaks: Say what?
I believe cash would be the best motivation.
I'm still amazed at how well BYOND Membership is comparing to Cash Prize. I didn't think they'd be that evenly matched.
Even if you gave me a cash prize I'd probably give it to BYOND through a membership anyways.
Tiberath wrote:
I'm still amazed at how well BYOND Membership is comparing to Cash Prize. I didn't think they'd be that evenly matched.

I'm surprised as well.

I still believe cash is the best route to take even if the membership category wins. If someone won and wanted a membership, but were not able to create a PayPal account, they can easily ask you to use their prize money to buy a membership for them.

As stated, not everyone wants/needs a membership, it best if you allowed us to take the cash and then 'part ways'.
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