Home Premio Archimede Edition 2020

Edition 2020





a new unexpected record!

Soon we will share more details…
in the hope of being able to see each other in Venice on October 2nd.


Considering that our objective, if the sanitary situation permits it, is to hold the prizing ceremony in the next fall (an hypothesis is the 2nd of October, 2021), and given also that we are receiving many requests from authors who had difficulties in play-testing due to Covid-19 issues, we decided to:

  • REOPEN the deadline for SIGNING UP and for sendung the prototypes from December the 1st to February the 28th

Those who already sent their prototypes and desire to make upgrades and changes can freely do so within the same period not before having noticed our staff via e-mail.


It might be the posticipation to 2021, it might even be the forced stay-at-home, but the fact is that the Premio Archimede 2020 has marked an incredible record of participation: we received 202 prototypes, I mean, 202!

The preliminary jury is doing whatever is possible but, during this hard times, such a workload is certainly not easy to climb through.

As soon as possible, we will share more details with you all about the next steps of the competition.


Considering the coronavirus health emergency, many authors are having issues in making the necessary tests for refining their games, while still respecting the deadlines of the competition. The jury itself is naturally experiencing difficulties in playing the games we already started to receive.
For these reasons, we decided to reopen the terms of the competition:

  • The deadline for REGISTERING and sending us the prototypes is extended to the
    31st of October, 2020
  • The final ceremony is postponed to a future date in 2021, which is yet to be defined

To whom already has their prototypes ready: please send us the game as soon as possible anyway; this would make the preliminary jury’s job much easier.
To whom already sent us their prototypes, but still wants to make some upgrades: you can do that freely within the new deadline, but please let us know by sending us an e-mail beforehand.

PREMIO ARCHIMEDE 2020 is organized by studiogiochi and it concerns the creation of new, original boardgames.

The award is entitled to the incredible Alex Randolph, president of the first seven editions, and, so far, it has helped more than 40 authors in making the dream of having their game published come true. Participation is open to singles or groups, with no age or residence restrictions.

The award is organized in collaboration with the City of Venice within an ampler framework of initiatives aimed at spreading the game culture – also as a means of preventing the rampant gambling disorders – and it is recognized by SAZ (Spiele-Autoren-Zunft), the International Game Designers Association.

The award ceremony will take place in Venice, on a future date in 2021, which is yet to be defined. A special exhibition of the prototypes that qualified for the final phase will also be set up for the occasion.

The Musée Suisse du Jeu will house a display of both the finalist games and the Special Trophies winners.

The Award is also recognized by PlayRes, by UISP (Unione Italiana Sport per Tutti), and by GioNa (Associazione Nazionale delle Città in Gioco) for its socio-cultural and inclusive values, and for its ability in bringing people together, as a recreational activity that promotes the right to play for everyone and at any age.

Thanks to the publishers’ support (so far have joined 999 Games, Amigo, Asmodee, Cartamundi, CMON, Cranio Creations, Giochi Uniti, Hans im Glück, Huch! & friends, Kosmos, Mandoo Games, Oliphante2, Pegasus Spiele, Piatnik, Queen Games, Ravensburger, Rio Grande Games, ThunderGryph Games, and other companies are in the process of finalizing their contribution) the winning authors will receive €3.500 in advance on the future royalties accrued through the publication of their games.

In addition to the Premio Archimede, the Jury will also assign several other awards, trophies and special prizes, such as:

Special Mention Sebastiano Izzo to the game that would have been a favorite of Sebastiano Izzo, unforgotten “game buddy” that we like to honor in each edition.

Special Trophy Cartamundi to the best card game. Thanks to Cartamundi support, €500 will be granted in advance on future royalties of the game. 

Special Trophy AIG (Autori In Gioco) to the game with the most innovative mechanics.

Special Trophy Scienza in Gioco to the best science-themed game with educational and informative purposes, assigned by the Photonic and Nanotechnology Institute of the Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche (IFN – CNR).

You can download the Premio Archimede 2020 Notice of Competition from the top left menu.

IFN – CNR will also organize the third edition of the FOTONICA IN GIOCO competition, open to all Italian high school students, aiming at realizing an original board game with educational or informative purposes (www.fotonicaingioco.it). The classes that will produce the three best projects will take part in the award ceremony, which will be held simultaneously with the Premio Archimede.


There will be two separate juries, working in different phases of the competition. During the first phase the only input will be from the Selection Jury, as of now composed by:

Leo Colovini (president)

Born in Venice in 1964, Leo Colovini begins his ludic adventure at about 12 when he meets Alex Randolph, playing chess in a club of Venice. Passionate about games  since ever, he is really struck by the “Master”, and becomes a goer of Randolph’s office. He takes part to the game tests with enthusiasm and never misses a single occasion to show Alex his naive and odd ideas. As time goes by, his ideas start to refine themselves and Leo finally presents to the severe judgement of his “Master” an interesting mechanism for a game, but, even if Randolph tries more than once to put his hands on it, the game doesn’t make it to be published. After one year they realize together Drachenfels, which is Leo’s first published game (Schmidt Spiele).  Two years later (1988), again in collaboration with Randolph, it is the time of Inkognito, published by MB, a great success (part of the list of Spiel des Jahres, and winner of the Sonderpreis – the special prize of the critics).  After several years Piatnik publishes Die Magische Sieben the first game signed by Colovini as a unique author. In 1993 he signs, together with Dario De Toffoli, Marco Maggi and Francesco Nepitello, the Role Playing Game Lex Arcana (Dal Negro). In 1993 he definitely leaves his job in the bank and begins to work full time for games. In 1994 Die Oster Insel is published by Blatz Spiele: this game also enters in the list of Spiel des Jahres. In the following years, the works with Dario De Toffoli increase until together with Alex Randolph they found Venice Connection. After several years he gets a history degree with a game-thesis about Charlemagne, and many of his games are published: Carolus Magnus in 2000 and Clans in 2003 (Winning Moves) that almost win the Spiel del Jahres by getting one of the three nominations. With his game Leo muss zum Friseur he wins the Deutscher Kinderspiele Preis 2016, gets very close to the victory of the Kinderspiel des Jahres 2016 (being among the three nominated games) and wins the Spiele Hit für Kinder 2016.

Giuseppe Baggio

One of the best Shogi italian players, he is really passionate about all games created by Alex Randolph. Giuseppe Baggio loves abstract boardgames, but he always enjoys playing any other kind of game.
Well, he loves to play and for this reason he became member of the Premio Archimede Jury.
With studiogiochi he contributed to the realization of the chapters about Shogi (japanese chess), the ones about heterodox chess for the book Il grande libro degli scacchi and he helped out in the proof-reading of many headwords of the Enciclopedia dei giochi by Giampaolo Dossena.

Federico Colovini

Son of Leo Colovini, never get tired playing games and trying to create new odd game systems that he regularly submit to his father’s severe judgement.
Wikinder, published by Clementoni, is based on Federico’s idea.
Despite the long beard, he still hasn’t decided what to do as a grown-up. Maybe an Egyptologist. Maybe a Brewer. Or maybe he will keep on playtesting and editing here in studiogiochi. And if he gets a headache while trying to conjugate his three passions… he goes away for some days and loosens up playing some LARP.

Piero Modolo

Piero Modolo was born in 1991. He is passionate about every type of games (from boardgames to videogames) but, particularly, of trading card games (before Yu-Gi-Oh!, now Gwent online has become his favourite game).
He graduated in philosophy in Venice, and after the positive experience with Premio Archimede 2016 he entered as a member of the preselection jury of the contest, with the responsability to connect the games (and their authors) with italian and international jurors.
He is on the front line when there is the need to test new games and works in many projects of the studio.

Umberto Rosin

President and co-founder of La Tana dei Goblin Venezia – the most important local gaming association – Umberto organizes gaming events, conventions and tournments attending the most important international kermesse in the field. With his Ph.D. he organized and took part to conferences with board games as a topic, in Lucca, Ferrara and Venice. He knows very well Euro-style board games but has a great expertise also in traditional and collectible card games, war games, role playing games, party games and the classics.

Dario Zaccariotto

Born in Dolo (near Venice) in 1968, he has a playful childhood.
In the beginning of the 80’s he gets in touch with the association MultigiocoClub from Mestre, and immediately becomes their “mascot”, being the youngest of the group. He is called from everybody Darietto [little Dario], in order not to get mixed up with the other Dario, “Darione” [big Dario] De Toffoli. Since he has a daughter, many friends call him Zack, but some nostalic ones still call him with the first nickname.
Beeing in touch with De Toffoli becomes a lasting status, and gradually he starts to collaborate with studiogiochi: he runs tournaments, develops boardgames and produces puzzles and other games for the press.
The big jump happens during the editions of the Italian Game Festival: he is responsible for some entire sections. Starting from that moment “Darietto” really understands what he wants to do once he grows up and soon he gets the chance to cross the great sea that separates “saying” from “doing”.
All the rest is topicality: he writes books and collaborates in the creation of games, and especially has a great pleasure presenting new puzzles to people, especially logic and numeric ones.
Suddenly one day he surprises everybody that sees him as a cold  calculator by winning an international poetry competition (www.centrostudivignola.it), with his first and last verses ever written.

This Jury will rank the games by the following features (in order of importance):

  • Originality of the game’s mechanics
  • Playability, balance and functionality of the mechanics
  • Fun
  • Publishing potential, i.e. the possibility that the game will be taken into consideration by a publisher
  • Theme coherence
  • Prototype’s functionality and understandability of the rules  

The Jury will reveal the Grossa-lista roughly a month before the day of the final, i.e. the list of the worthiest titles (it usually includes 50% of the participants).
After this, the list will be further skimmed to get to the Fina-lista (which generally includes 15-20 titles) to submit to the Final Jury.

At the moment, the Final Jury is composed by:

Dario De Toffoli (president, Italy)

Dario De Toffoli was born in Venice in 1953. He first entered in contact with the gaming world in the early Eighties, and his life has never been the same since.
Bit by bit he abandoned his career as a chemist and begun working on all aspects (competitive, technical and cultural) surrounding all kinds of games: Board games, card games, puzzles, brainteasers, mathematical games

This newfound interest is what motivated him to found studiogiochi in 1987.

Dario De Toffoli is

  • studiogiochi’s founder
  • a freelance journalist, writer and game author
  • the director of the Italian Games Archive in Udine
  • decorated from the PLDA with a special Career Prize “Ludic personality” in 2007
  • awarded with the Best of Show Career Prize, Lucca Comics and Games 2017
  • Pentamind World Champion of 2002 and 2012

Gonzalo Aguirre Bisi (ThunderGryph, Spain)

Gonzalo Aguirre Bisi is a passionate gamer and game designer that joined the gaming industry in 2007 working as a video game publisher. Gonzalo grow up back and forth from Italy to Peru and he moved back definitely to Rome in his adulthood to attend to La Sapienza university. Now he is living between Rome and Sevilla, a city he fell in love with.
Since 2014 he has been developing the business side of ThunderGryph with the aim to develop and publish board games.
With nearly one year from launch, ThunderGryph’s counts three published games and seven new titles coming in 2017-2018.

Michael Bruinsma (999 games, The Netherlands)

My name is Michael Bruinsma, and I was born in 1952 in The Netherlands to a Dutch father and an English mother. In my early life I lived in The Neteherlands, but also in New Guinea, Paris, Spain and Italy in the vicinity of La Spezia. From an early age I played games like Monopoly, Stratego, Risk and others, and later I discovered more elaborate games during my travels. In 1981 I started collecting Avalon Hill and other games, and by 1986 I became a member of Ducosim, a games club dedicated to imported war-, fantasy and other games. In 1990 I visited the Neurenberg Toy Fair and met Mr. Bernd Brunnhofer from Hans Im Glueck Verlag, whom I asked for a representation. I was particularly interested in his railwaygame “1835”, of which I bought 120 copies to sell in The Netherlands. I did not manage to sell it to retail in large quantities, and decided to operate as a mailorder company. I invested the few guilders I had in imported games, mostly from America, and started off. It worked! I went to many games conventions and acted as a market salesman. I even went to Copenhagen, Frankfurt and Antwerp regularly, and reinvested every penny I made so as to build up a wide selection of games and accessories. In 1992 I visited GenCon in Milwaukee, and bought a few roleplaying books from a small outfit called Wizards of the Coast. So, in 1993, I became their representative in Holland for the hugely successful Magic: the Gathering. In 1998 I started publishing boardgames and later cardgames. This was another breakthrough: I had found a huge gap in the market. In 1999 the Pokemon collectible cardgame hit the market and suddenly everything grew out of proportion. The fun was over but the business was great. Now, I lead a dedicated team of 30 specialists and we supply the BeNeLux with wonderful products.

Bernd e Moritz Brunnhofer (Hans im Glück, Germany)

Bernd Brunnhofer was born in 1946 near Graz in Austria. He came to Germany in the 60s, studied Sociology and was later a university lecturer. He founded Hans im Glück in 1983 together with Karl-Heinz Schmiel, when they published the small handcrafted game Dodge City. The first games were no big success until in 1991 the breakthrough came with Drunter und Drüber by Klaus Teuber. It was the first german game of the year from a small company and 1994 followed Manhattan by Andreas Seyfarth and 1996 El Grande by Wolfgang Kramer and Richard Ulrich. At least since that time Hans im Glück was a well known in german households.  2001 another milestone came with the worldwide success of Carcassonne by Klaus-Jürgen Wrede. Especially the finetuning of the game by Bernd Brunnhofer was part of that success and every player in world knows today the cute meeple, which was designed by Bernd Brunnhofer. With Thurn und Taxis by Andreas Seyfarth in 2006 and Dominion by Donald Vaccarino in 2009 Hans im Glück won two more games of the year in Germany. Bernd Brunnhofer also is a great game designer himself. His games Sankt Petersburg and Stone Age are well known and popular in the gamers scene. And perhaps he’s just working on the next big thing…

Thomas Cauet (Asmodée, France)

Born in 1977, Thomas leaves in Paris, France. He began his professional life as a software engineer while working part-time for Ystari Games. He is now working full time for Ystari Games, then Space Cowboys, developping games for the Asmodée group. He is co-author of one game (Nefertiti – Matagot) and several scenarios for the Unlock! series. He is also juror for the FLIP (Parthenay festival).

Andrea Chiarvesio (CMON, Singapore)

Born in Turin in 1970 where he lives and works still today, he began to be interested in game design during his experiences in Wizards of the Coast and Upperdeck at the end of the 90s.
From 2005 is a game designer, freelance at first and now for CMON. Between his titles: Kingsburg, Olympus, Wizards of Mickey (all of them winners of the “Best of Show” by Lucca Games & Comics), Hyperborea, Signorie and Warstones.
For CMON he published, until now, Richard the Lionheart, Munchkin Dungeon (together with Eric Lang) and Wacky Races.

Stefano De Carolis (Giochi Uniti, Italy)

Stefano literally grew up in games, being his father one of the greatest game collectors in the world. He was destined for a career in games, and is now strategic planner for the international game publisher Giochi Uniti(CarcassoneSettlers of Catan). Playing together with Stefano you may experience his dialectics, he also studied international relations actually, a specialization that tourned out to be very useful in his job for Giochi Uniti. So if you ever happen to presuade him to publish one of your games remember this may not be so easy…

Silvio De Pecher (Tana dei Goblin, Italy)

I begun to play when I was 10, and going to England I bought the game Bitzkrieg. I learned the rules and found only a few friends to play with… The passion for games went on anyway with D&D, and during my University years I played games from the Games Workshop, such as TalismanBlind Justice, Merchant of Venus and Cosmic Encounters, which is I believe still my favourite game. In 1995, during the first Italian Internet experiences, I put on the first website about games, “giochi-on-line”. Both “Lobo” and “The Goblin” were part of it, and so in 2007 “La tana del Goblin” was born, to include all the people who love games. I traveled a lot and had the opportunity to be part of very many important game events: Origins, where I met Andreas Seyfarth, Gen Con, ComiCon… I have been invited by Alan Moon as first Italian to the Gathering of Friends, I have been invited as jury member for many games competitions, first of all the Premio Archimede, which has become a real springboard for Italian authors. I am not only crazy about german games, in fact I also love the american style in which hazard can change everything in a moment.

Ulrich Fonrobert (Queen Games, Germany)

Ulrich Fonrobert is born in northern Germany in 1967. Games have been with him since he was a child, with his father teaching him the rules of classics like Chess, Skat and Doppelkopf.
He has been collecting games since at least 1979. He joined the German armed forces in 1986, where he used to play dice games with his comrades during otherwise boring evenings. Settlers of Catan and El Grande are two of his (many) favourite games.
In Kiel he found his first permanent gaming group with whom he got part in various board gaming tournaments and championships around Germany. So he met people like Christwart Conrad and Ralph Bruhn, and with their help he became part of Family Games in 2006 and additionally did work for Hall9000 as a reviewer for a short while.
In 2007 he entered in Queen Games, where he is now one of the company’s product managers, tasked with finding the most promising newcomers and novelties to the ever-changing market of board games. After attending GenCon twice and BGG.con five times he is now very much looking forward to whatever Premio Archimede might hold in store for him!

Holger Grimm (Amigo, Germany)

Holger was born in Frankfurt, Germany in 1975. After studying civil engineering, instead to work for Siemens developing nuclear plants, he decided to work for Amigo in the IT department for 15 years.
In 2016 Holger got the opportunity to join the game development team for Amigo.

Hermann Hutter (Huch! & friends, Germany)

Hermann Hutter has founded the distribution company Hutter Trade in 2004. Since then, the company has become established as an integral part of the game world. With its own brand HUCH! and innovative educational and leisure games, communication games with lifestyle character, and strategy games from foreign partner publishers, Hutter Trade has created its own distinctive profile.
Publishing games is a big passion for Hermann. Numerous awards – such as the “Toy Award 2008,” the “Children’s Game of the Year 2007,” and the “German Game Prize 2006” – provide evidence of the company’s success. Led by the joy of playing, creativity and design and an interest in new trends, HUCH! creates game innovations that provide long-lasting fun! Hermann Hutter is a very experienced retailer and is successfully managing numerous shops.

Kevin Kichan Kim (Mandoo Games, Korea)

Kevin Kichan Kim was born 1976 in Seoul. During he was studying Robot eyes in graduated school, he was fascinating to playing boardgames. In 2002, he opened a Boardgame cafe in Seoul and the cafe expanded 16 places in Korea. Then he started to develop games by himself, he founded Korean Association of Boardgame Industry and Korea Boardgame Con. In 2010, he joined in Korea Boardgames as a head of product development. At KBG, he had led the localization of around 150 games, game publishing such as Coconuts, Abraca…What? and more. He quit KBG in 2015 and joined in Happy Baobab as a VP and helped Asian small publishers to develop their product and to find western distributors. From 2017 Fall, he has led publishing company Mandoo Games as a CEO to introduce nice game with beautiful artworks to the world.

Simone Luciani (Cranio Creations, Italy)

Born in 1977, Simone Luciani begins as player and amateur game designer.
He has taken part many times in the Archimede contest, which he won two times, with Portobello Road (best card game in 2008 and his first creation to be published – by Piatnik as Frutti di mare – ) and Marco Polo, Premio Archimede 2012, then published by Hans in Glück and winner of the Deutscher Spiele Preis.
In 2013 Simone began to work with the Italian publisher Cranio Creations where he has now the main role in selecting and developing games. In 2015 Simone left his teaching career (that lasted over 15 years) to be a full-time game designer.

Wolfgang Lüdtke (Kosmos, Germany)

Wolfgang became passionate about games as a reviewer and collector. But when Peter Neugebauer introduced him to the game designer Klaus Teuber and his wife Claudia (almost 30 years ago), the encounter turned into a special friendship, and from then on Wolfgang has been actively involved in the development of new games at an early stage.
Wolfgang’s career as an editor began when he joined the new company TM-Spiele GmbH, which soon enough began to focus on consultancy for other game publishers.
He has edited games published under the Goldsieber label and by KOSMOS until 2013.
Wolfgang regards his ability to recognize whether a prototype has the potential of becoming a good game as one of his strenghts. As an editor at KOSMOS, he continues to take care of part of the family and adult games, and he also continues to be actively involved in the development of games at an early stage.

Klaus Ottmaier (Pegasus, Germany)

Klaus Ottmaier was born 1977 in Vienna. Perhaps he played games before he was able to speak… After school he studied Genetics. 2000 he moved to Cologne where he became a bookseller and a happy father of two sons. This was the time when he started to work on games in a professional way – he became the editor of the small publisher Argentum Verlag. In 2012 he got the great opportunity to work for Pegasus Spiele what he does as the head of publishing till now.

Philipp Sprick (Ravensburger, Germany)

Ravensburger Spieleverlag; editorial head of family and adult games.
Had a very happy childhood surrounded by Ravensburger games. Would have been even happier being told that his job as grown up would be still playing games but even getting paid for it.
After studies law and history (one of those was very boring) he started working for Ravensburger in 2005.

Dieter Strehl (Piatnik, Austria)

Great-grandson of the founder of Piatnik, he is working at the company since 1983. He is Chief Executive Officer since April 1995.

Jay Tummelson (Rio Grande Games, USA)

He graduated from the University of Illinois and began working in data processing at 19. At 50, he decided to follow his passion for games – which he had been playing since childhood – and left data processing to work for Mayfair Games. After two years there, he founded Rio Grande Games. With Rio Grande Games he started publishing games of his own (including working with other firms to publish localized games in their languages), and partnered with foreign publishers to produce their games in English. Since 1998, Rio Grande Games has realized over 750 games, some of whom have won awards, including Dominion, which won the Spiel des Jahres in 2009. In addition to Dominion and its many expansions, their most popular games are Race for the Galaxy, Roll for the Galaxy, Tikal, Bohnanza, Friday, Power Grid, Concordia, Puerto Rico, Torres, Coloretto, Ricochet Robots, Carcassonne and Lost Cities. In more recent years, he has endorsed new designers by participating in game design competitions, as Premio Archimede, and publishing their games.

Albrecht Werstein (Game Factory, Germany)

Albrecht Werstein is a former game designer and has been publishing games for over 25 years. He has been responsible for more than 250 game releases by the Zoch Verlag, two of which have earned the title “Spiel des Jahres” (Niagara and Villa Paletti) and three of which won the “Kinderspiel des Jahres” award (Zicke Zacke – Da ist der Wurm drin – Spinderella).
Now he works for the innovative Game Factory, and he is very much looking forward to this year’s Premio Archimede designs!

In the week before the final, each juror will test all the finalist games, recording their impressions in secret and choosing their seven favorite games. During the final, which is open to the public, each jury member will cast their vote, secretly assigning 7 points to their favorite game, 6 points to their second favorite, and so on. Counting of the votes will be in real time in front of the public, and the final ranking will be entirely based upon the sum of the points received by each game.
Both juries will make use of the consultation and collaboration of F. Bortolato, G. Franceschini, C. Giuriato, C. Manfren, G. Marchesin, R. Nardo and selected playtesters.

Jurors 2018