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Borders always surround us. They can be drawn or crossed. As we define them, they define us. The exhibition showcased works which approach this topic either as a medium – by breaking gameplay expectations or setting strict rules – or thematically, with natural, political and social borders as a narrative element of the game. Let’s dive into the unknown of faith, life and death! Discover and explore boundaries! And as some also challenge our own views, in the visual and mental sense, the question remains: Where does a game end, where does the real world begin?

Next to the core selection of the exhibition, attendees could also experience the Award Nominees and the games from the (canceled) physical "untouchable" exhibition, where we would have showcased games that can be played without touching them.

Every game was able to win the audience award, for which all attendees could vote! To view, play and vote on the games, they could visit the virtual festival location inside the A MAZE./ SPACE. Just want to take a peek? Watch channel 5 on the festival frontpage or scroll down to view the games and try their demos.




Explorations into the unknown are mostly expeditions beyond our natural borders. The depths of sea and space, with earth in between tell tales since generations.
The selected works show this sense of exploration in their environment, but also in their human emotion.

Using Borders

Borders don’t always have to be something to overcome, they can be used to find new ways and means to traverse the world: Shortcuts between two- and three-dimensional space, weaving nets not to hinder, but to climb or using recursive systems of boxes within boxes within boxes within boxes within boxes within boxes withing boxes...

Breaking Walls

Hey, psst!
These works will probably trick you.
They ask to think outside the box of your mind and their screen and play with expectations as well as the understanding of games and goals.

Overcoming Limits

Some things are hard.
Either emotionally or physically. These works challenge your tolerance level and make you want to thrash your keyboard or help you to handle future situations better.

Social Boundaries

Thousands of years and we still haven’t figured out how we work ourselves, how we do with others. There is more then left and right, male and female, hetero and homo - The space in between (and outside of it) is colorful, wild, full of love and most importantly: It is not a border, but a gradient which invites for exploration and acceptance.

Worldviews with/without Borders

Our views are often limited to perception, knowledge and our experiences. They shape how we approach the world and form thoughts about it and other beings. The selected works behind you make us see through social media filters and literal frames or try to broaden senses by putting humans in contrast to the size of the world and its problems.

Political Borders

Probably the first thought which comes to mind while thinking about the topic - We structure our place in the world by drawing political borders. What happens on those borders though, besides the guard posts? These works explore the stories, experiences and the drama happening in past, present and future borders.


The final border is always in ourselves. Where does our knowledge, our morals and our imagination end? How far can we go? Is there something beyond our perception?

Cancelled untouchable exhibition

These works would have been exhibited at the designxport Hamburg and feature elements, which can’t be experienced as we intended in the virtual space: Without touching them. With movement of the head, hands or the whole body, they break the boundarys of how we “normally” interact with games, but also address borders in dreamlike travels, flow or simply the next level with some deadly lava as a motivator.

PLAY20 – Creative Gaming Festival is an event produced by the Initiative Creative Gaming e. V. and jaf – Verein für medienpädagogische Praxis Hamburg e. V. in cooperation with spielbar.de, the platform of the Federal Agency for Civic Education/bpb on the Subject of Computer Games, Behörde für Schule und Berufsbildung Hamburg and JIZ – Jugendinformationszentrum Hamburg (BSB).

Supported by the HAW Hamburg - Faculty of Design, Media and Information with the Mastercourse Games, the BürgerStiftung Hamburg, designxport and Gamecity Hamburg

In cooperation with the FUNDUS THEATER
Sponsored by siebold/hamburg messebau GmbH

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