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Microsoft Dream.Build.Play 2017 Challenge Official Rules


This Challenge will operate as a skilled-based contest. This Challenge is hosted in the United States and entry information is collected on computers in the United States. This Challenge will be governed by the laws of the State of Washington and you consent to the exclusive jurisdiction and venue of the courts of the State of Washington for any disputes arising out of this Challenge. If you do not agree with this provision and these Official Rules, please do not enter this Challenge.




These are the Official Rules that govern how the Microsoft Dream.Build.Play 2017 Challenge will operate (“Challenge”).

In these Official Rules, “we,” “our,” and “us” refer to Microsoft Corporation, the sponsor of this Challenge. “You” and “your” refers to an eligible Challenge entrant. 


The object of this Challenge is to recognize the best games for the Universal Windows Platform (“UWP”) platform, in four categories, as described below.




This Challenge starts at 00:01:00  Coordinated Universal Time (“UTC”) on June 27, 2017 and ends at 23:59:59 UTC on December 31, 2017 (“Challenge Period”).



You are eligible to enter this Challenge if you meet the following requirements at time entry:

  • If you are a legal resident in your place of residence and 18 years of age or older as of June 27, 2017. If you are 18 years of age or older but are considered a minor in your place of residence, you must have your parent’s or legal guardian’s permission to enter; and
  • You have the technical programming education, experience and/or knowledge to create games for UWP; and
  • You are NOT a resident of any of the following countries: Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Sudan, and Syria; and

    • PLEASE NOTE: U.S. export regulations prohibit the export of goods and services to Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Sudan and Syria. Therefore, residents of these countries / regions are not eligible to participate.
  • You are NOT an employee of Microsoft Corporation or an employee of a Microsoft subsidiary; and
  • You are NOT an employee of any company or organization that is involved in the provision of prizes, equipment or materials for this Challenge; and
  • You are NOT involved in any part of the administration and execution of this Challenge; and
  • You are NOT an immediate family (parent, sibling, spouse, child) or household member of a Microsoft employee, an employee of a Microsoft subsidiary, or a person involved in any part of the administration and execution of this Challenge.

If you're employed by a game development company that has 7 or more employees, you are eligible as long as your submission was not developed as a part of your job or for pay. If you are employed by an independent game developer with fewer than 7 employees, your submission is eligible if it was developed as part of your job/for pay. PLEASE NOTE: It is your sole responsibility to review and understand your employer’s policies regarding your eligibility to participate in promotions. If you are participating in violation of your employer’s policies, you may be disqualified from entering or receiving prizes. Microsoft disclaims any and all liability or responsibility for disputes arising between an employee and their employer related to this matter, and prizes will only be awarded in compliance with the employer’s policies. 

This Challenge is void where prohibited by law.



The Challenge includes four (4) Periods: 


Start Time

End Time

Registration Period

June 27, 2017

December 31, 2017

Team Formation and Game Submission Period

August 9, 2017

December 31, 2017

Judging Initial Round Period

January 2, 2018

January 31, 2018

Judging Finalist Round Period

February 1, 2018

March 20, 2018


Registration Period


If you wish to participate in the Challenge, you must go to the Site (www.dreambuildplay.com) and sign-up for the Challenge during the Registration Period. You may enter as an individual or as a member of a team. Individuals eligible for participation in the Challenge may participate collectively as a "Team", which may include at least one (1), but not more than six (6) additional individual Team members (up to a maximum total of seven (7) members). 



The first member of a Team to create an entry will be designated the Team Captain ("Captain"). The Team Captain will be responsible for identifying all additional Team members (if any) associated with each game entry.  Team members must all sign-up to be associated with an entry.  Membership on Teams may fluctuate within the parameters of these Official Rules until the close of the Team Formation and Game Submission Period.

Each Team of more than one (1) member is solely responsible for its own collaboration and cooperation with respect to Challenge participation. In no event, will Sponsor officiate in any dispute regarding the activities and participation of Team members. 

Creating an Entry


To create an entry, each Team must create a playable UWP game. An entry (“Entry” or “Entries”) consists of the following elements:

  1. Game Title
  2. Windows Store ID

    1. Entry must be submitted and approved in the store, but does not need to be publicly available.
  3. Game Description

    1. Up to a maximum of 2,000 characters. If pre-existing source code is incorporated into the Game, then this pre-existing source code must be clearly identified in the Game Description and must not infringe on any third-party rights, and must be used in accordance with all applicable licensing and use Official Rules;
  4. Game Icon

    1. .jpg format.  Cannot exceed a maximum file size of 2MB.
  5. Screen Shots - five (5)

    1. In .jpg format, which capture the play and style of the Game as accurately as possible and contain no unfinished artwork or graphical artifacts. Each screenshot cannot exceed a maximum file size of 2MB.
  6. Game Video:

    1. Depicts the Game’s functionality and gameplay
    2. Hosted on a publicly accessible, no-password protected website. Game video is subject to the Official Rules of use mandated by the website where hosted.
  7. Business Plan

    1. Description of your plans on how you’d get your project to market. Up to a maximum of 6,000 characters.

An Entry may be submitted in one (1) or more of the following categories:

  • Cloud-powered game
  • PC game
  • Mixed reality game
  • Console game


Submit Entry


At any time during the Team Formation and Game Submission Period an Entry or Entry element (as listed above) may be submitted. We are not responsible for Entries that we do not receive for any reason, or for Entries that we receive but are not decipherable for any reason. We will automatically disqualify any incomplete or illegible Entry.  



All eligible Entries will be preliminarily screened (and at any time may be subsequently screened) for conformity with the Official Rules and may be posted in the gallery (“Gallery”) for public viewing.



To be eligible for judging an Entry must meet the following content / technical requirements:

  • your Entry must be in English; and
  • your Entry must be your own original work; and
  • your Entry cannot have been selected as a winner in any other Challenge; and
  • you must have obtained any and all consents, approvals or licenses required for you to submit your Entry; and
  • your Entry does not include a previously submitted Game that was / is actively under consideration by Microsoft or a Microsoft agent for a publishing contract, or a Game that has been awarded a publishing agreement by Microsoft or a Microsoft agent, or any Game that has won a prize in a previous Dream.Build.Play Challenge. The exception is games that have been submitted as part of the ID@Xbox program. Games that have been published through this program may be submitted, if they meet all other Eligible Entry Requirements.

An Entry may NOT contain, as determined by us, in our sole and absolute discretion, any content that:

  • is sexually explicit, unnecessarily violent or derogatory of any ethnic, racial, gender, religious, professional or age group; profane or pornographic;
  • promotes alcohol, illegal drugs, tobacco, or any political agenda;
  • is obscene or offensive;
  • defames, misrepresents or contains disparaging remarks about other people or companies;
  • contains content which infringes intellectual property rights of others;
  • communicates messages or images inconsistent with the positive images and/or good will to which we wish to associate; and/or violates any law;
  • contains trademarks, logos or trade dress, without express written consent of the rights holder(s) or a reasonable apparent lawful bias for your use;
  • contains copyrighted materials owned by others (including photographs, sculptures, paintings, music and other works of art of images published on or in websites, television, movies or other media) either without express consent of the rights holder(s) or a reasonable apparent lawful bias for your use;
  • contains materials embodying the names, likenesses, voices, or other indicia identifying any person (other than a member of your family or community for whom you have received consent) including, without limitation, celebrities and/or other public or private figures, living or dead either without express written consent of the rights holder(s) or a reasonably apparent lawful basis for your use(s);
  • contains look-alikes of celebrities or other public or private figures, living or dead either without express written consent of the rights holder(s) or a reasonably apparent lawful basis for your use(s);
  • contains packaging or building (exteriors/interiors) owned by others.

Microsoft reserves the right to investigate and verify, conditionally reject, or reject outright any Entry, in our sole and absolute discretion, that we determine does not meet the above criteria.




Other than what is set forth below, we are not claiming any ownership rights to your Entry. However, by submitting your Entry, you:

  • are granting us an irrevocable, royalty-free, worldwide right and license to: (i) review, assess, test and otherwise analyze your Entry and all its content in connection with this Challenge; and (ii) feature your Entry and all content in connection with the marketing, sale, or promotion of this Challenge (including but not limited to internal and external sales meetings, conference presentations, tradeshows, and screen shots of the Challenge Entry in press releases) in all media (now known or later developed);
  • agree to sign any necessary documentation that may be required for us and our designees to make use of the rights you granted above;
  • understand and acknowledge that you retain ownership of your Challenge Entry IP, the Sponsor(s) do NOT have the rights to sell, publish or distribute your Challenge Entry, but Sponsor(s) may have developed or commissioned materials similar or identical to your Entry and you waive any claims you may have resulting from any similarities to your Entry;
  • understand that we cannot control the incoming information you will disclose to our representatives while entering, or what our representatives will remember about your Entry. You also understand that we will not restrict work assignments of representatives who have had access to your Entry. By entering this Challenge, you agree that use of information in our representatives’ unaided memories in the development or deployment of our products or services does not create liability for us under this agreement or copyright or trade secret law;
  • understand that you will not receive any compensation or credit for use of your Entry, other than what is described in these Official Rules.

Please note that during and following the end of this Challenge screen shots and video submitted as part of your Challenge Entry may be posted on a website selected by us for viewing by visitors to that website. We are not responsible for any unauthorized use of your Entry by visitors to this website. While we reserve these rights, we are not obligated to use your Entry for any purpose, even if it has been selected as a winning Entry.

If your Team does not want to grant us these rights to your Entry, please do not enter this Challenge.




By entering this Challenge, you agree:

  • To abide by these Official Rules; and
  • To release and hold harmless Microsoft, and each entity’s respective parents, subsidiaries, affiliates, employees and agents from any and all liability or any injury, loss or damage of any kind arising from or in connection with this Challenge, or any prize won; and
  • That Microsoft’s decisions will be final and binding on all matters related to this Challenge; and
  • That, by accepting a prize, Microsoft may use your Team Name and country of residence, online and in print, or in any other media, in connection with this Challenge, without payment or compensation to you, except where prohibited by law; and
  • To receive regular communications from Microsoft specifically related to the 2017 Challenge at the e-mail address associated with the Microsoft Account you used to sign-up.




On or about January 2, 2018, a panel of judges appointed by us will judge all eligible Entries using the below judging criteria in the first initial round of judging. The three (3) highest scoring entries in each category will be “Finalists” and move onto the second round of judging.   On or about February 1, 2018, a second panel of judges appointed by us will judge the Finalists in each category using the judging criteria below.  The highest scoring Entry per category will be determined as a winner. Persons who submit an Entry are not eligible to judge.

All judging will be based on the following judging criteria:




Fun Factor

Does this game provide the desire to keep playing?

How intellectually challenging, relaxing, stimulating or satisfying is it to play the game?



Is the Game creatively and technically unique?


Production Quality

Is the overall Game play seamless? Judges will assess the quality of the assets used, the user Interface design, and overall performance and stability of the Game


Business Plan/feasibility

Does the Team have a credible plan for getting their project to market?

Does the Game have a reasonable chance of success?



The decisions of the judges are final and binding. In the event of a tie between any eligible Entries, an additional judge will break the tie based on the judging criteria described above. If we do not receive a sufficient number of Entries meeting the Entry requirements, we may, at our discretion, select fewer winners than the number of Challenge Prizes described below.




Four (4) Grand Prizes – One (1) Grand Prize per category:

  • Cloud-powered game - $100,000 USD (awarded pro rata to each Team member).
  • PC game -  $50,000 USD (awarded pro rata to each Team member).
  • Mixed reality game - $50,000 USD (awarded pro rata to each Team member).
  • Console game - $25,000 USD (awarded pro rata to each Team member).

The total ARV of all prizes is: $225,000 USD. Limit one (1) prize per Entry.

Consideration for a Microsoft Publishing Contract: Based on Sponsor's good faith review and consideration of the Entry, Sponsor may invite the Team associated with a winning Entry to enter into a Microsoft Publishing Contract on Official Rules and conditions specified by Sponsor. The invitation to enter into a Publishing Contract is at Sponsor's sole and unfettered discretion; no approximate retail value is assigned to such potential invitation or Publishing Contract.

If you are a potential winner, we will notify you by sending a message to the e-mail address, the phone number, or mailing address (if any) on file with your Microsoft Account or provided at time of Entry, within ten (10) days following completion of judging.  If the notification that we send is returned as undeliverable, your contact information is false, or you are otherwise unreachable or ineligible for any reason, we may disqualify you.

If any Team member is a potential winner and is 18 years of age or older, but is considered a minor in their place of legal residence, we may require that person’s parent or legal guardian to sign all required forms on their behalf. If that person does not complete the required forms as instructed and/or return the required forms within the time period listed on the winner notification message, we may disqualify the Team member.

All prize winners are potential winners, subject to notification, verification and acceptance of such prizes. Taxes, duties or other costs, if any, relating to receipt, acceptance and/or use of a prize is the sole responsibility of each Team member. Sponsor accepts no responsibility or liability for disputes, if any, that may arise between officially registered Participants, including regarding Team member issues, relating to participation in the Challenge and award/distribution of Challenge prizes. If there is a dispute as to who is the potential winner, Sponsor will consider the potential winner to be the authorized account holder of the e-mail address used to enter the Challenge. Potential winners (or the winner’s parent/legal guardian) will be required to sign and return a Declaration of Eligibility, Liability/Publicity Release and a W-9 tax form or W-8BEN tax form within 10 days of notification. If a potential winner does not complete the required forms as instructed and/or return the required forms within the time period listed on the winner notification message, Sponsor may disqualify the Team member. In the event a Team member is disqualified, the Challenge prize will be awarded to the other Team members, if any, who complete the required paperwork.

All Challenge prize consideration will be awarded solely to the officially registered Team members, or to their parents or legal guardians, if the officially registered Team member is a minor in his/her jurisdiction of residence.

In the event a potential winning Team (all members) cannot be reasonably notified, verified or confirmed based on two (2) attempts (and further attempts at Sponsor's sole discretion), a Challenge prize is declined or a potential Winning Team or an Entry is determined not to be eligible for Challenge participation or award of a Challenge prize for whatever reason, an alternate winning Team may be determined based on the Judging Criteria in accordance with these Official Rules.

If a potential winning Team or an Entry is determined not to be eligible for Challenge participation or award of a Challenge prize for whatever reason, an alternate winning Team may be determined based on the Judging Criteria in accordance with these Official Rules.

If you are confirmed as a winner of this Challenge:

  • You may not exchange your prize for merchandise or services. However, if for any reason an advertised prize is unavailable, we reserve the right to substitute a prize of equal or greater value; and
  • You may not designate someone else as the winner. If you are unable or unwilling to accept your prize; and
  • If you accept a prize, you will be solely responsible for all applicable taxes related to accepting the prize; and
  • If you are otherwise eligible for this Challenge, but are considered a minor in your place of residence, we may award the prize to your parent/legal guardian on your behalf.




If someone cheats, or a virus, bug, catastrophic event, or any other unforeseen or unexpected event that cannot be reasonably anticipated or controlled, (also referred to as force majeure) affects the fairness and / or integrity of this Challenge, we reserve the right to cancel, change or suspend this Challenge. This right is reserved whether the event is due to human or technical error. If a solution cannot be found to restore the integrity of the Challenge, we reserve the right to judge all eligible Entries received before we had to cancel, change or suspend the Challenge to determine the winners.

If you or any Team member attempt to compromise the integrity or the legitimate operation of this Challenge by hacking or by cheating or committing fraud in ANY way, we may seek damages from you to the fullest extent permitted by law. Further, we may ban you from participating in any of our future Challenges, so please play fairly.



We will post the names of the winning Teams online at www.dreambuildplay.com. This list will remain posted for at least one month after the Challenge Period.



At Microsoft, we are committed to protecting your privacy. Microsoft uses the information you provide to notify prize winners, and to send you information about other Microsoft products and services, if requested by you. Microsoft will not share the information you provide with third parties without your permission except where necessary to complete the services or transactions you have requested, or as required by law. Microsoft is committed to protecting the security of your personal information. We use a variety of security technologies and procedures to help protect your personal information from unauthorized access, use, or disclosure. Your personal information is never shared outside the company without your permission, except under conditions explained above.

If you believe that Microsoft has not adhered to this statement, please notify us by sending an email to dreambuildplay@gmg.zendesk.com and we will use commercially reasonable efforts to remedy the situation.



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