The 2021 G4C Student Challenge Competition Has Launched!

By Cassie Baralis

The 2021 G4C Student Challenge competition is officially open for submissions! Students across the country can now submit their original social impact games and compete to win awesome prizes, including a $1,000 Grand Prize Scholarship, generously provided by Take-Two Interactive!

This year, we are thrilled to offer citywide competitions in the four Challenge Cities (Atlanta, Detroit, Los Angeles, and New York City) in addition to a national competition open to all middle and high school students throughout the US. If you’re looking for a place to get started with the G4C Student Challenge competition and game design, check out our Student and Teacher curriculum guides!

Students can submit original digital games related to one of three social impact themes:

Advocating for Animals: Games that explore the interconnected relationship between humans, animals, and the environment (in partnership with Annenberg PetSpace)
Build a Better World: Games that celebrate diversity and teach people how to uplift marginalized voices (in collaboration with Minecraft: Education Edition)
Resilience through Games: Games that elevate self-care, social connection, and community support in the time of COVID-19 (in partnership with IMLS and mental health non-profit Take This)

Finalists will be invited to showcase their games at culminating Awards Ceremonies, during which winners will be revealed and prizes awarded.


This year, we are excited to introduce two new award categories to the Challenge competition:

1) The Fair Game Writing Challenge, sponsored by the New York Videogame Critics Circle, introduces a new element to the competition: video game journalism where students submit a Video Game Review and a Game Narrative. Students do not need to create a digital game for this award. Winners will receive special mentorship opportunities from expert video game journalists and critics in addition to a $400 cash prize.

2) The Game Accessibility Challenge is part of a partnership with award-winning games studio Numinous Games through their new project, the Playability Initiative, funded by Novartis Gene TherapiesThis competitive award challenges students to design for accessibility and include game features that support the gameplay experience for players with different types of disabilities (including visual, auditory, motor, and/or cognitive/learning). The winner will receive an Xbox Adaptive Controller and Logitech Adaptive Gaming Kit for themselves and another set for their school to playtest future accessible designs. The winning student will also have an opportunity to collaborate with Numinous Games on the design of Painted Waters. As a collaborator, they will receive a named associate designer credit in the game once it is released.


The 2020-21 Challenge will host a multitude of virtual events to support teachers, students, and parents. Check out some upcoming events below and stay tuned to the Events page on the SC website for more!

G4C Virtual Game Jams: Advocating for Animals
February 6 (NYC / ATL / Detroit) | February 27 (National)

Open to middle and high school students, participants will learn to prototype games with guidance from professional game designers and topic experts that focus on the importance of being responsible animal advocates! Even if you’re a total newbie it’s a great chance to discover and practice game design! Supported by Annenberg Petspace.

G4C Virtual Game Jams: Build a Better World
March 6 (NYC / ATL / Detroit), March 20 (National)
Join us for a day of creativity, fun, and game design! Middle and high school students will explore topics around diversity & inclusion and work with pro game designers and Minecraft mentors to design and build games in Minecraft: Education Edition. Complimentary accounts will be provided for all participants. Registration is coming soon!

G4C Virtual Office Hours 
February, 3, March 2,  and April 14
4:30-5:30 pm EST, 7:00-8:00 pm EST

1-on-1 support to ask questions related to your game project, game making tools, or keeping students engaged in your game design course! Open to ALL students, teachers, and parents participating in the G4C Student Challenge.

The 2020-2021 G4C Student Challenge is generously funded by General Motors, Annenberg Foundation, Annenberg Learner, Take-Two Interactive, New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, National Endowment for the Arts, Motorola Solutions Foundation, Minecraft: Education Edition, Institute of Museum and Library Services, the New York Videogame Critics Circle, The Playability Initiative, and MoPub. Additional, city-based partners include: Mouse, Two Bit Circus Foundation and Detroit Public Schools Community District (DPSCD).