Believe it or not, many of the best games start out as student development projects. The Misadventures of P.B. Winterbottom, flOw and even Portal all began life as student projects. Speaking at a GDC panel, the developers of the games listed above gave their advice on how budding student game designers can see their own projects become a success. The panel included Kim Swift, designer of Portal and currently of Airtight Games, Matt Korba and Paul Bellezza of The Odd Gentlemen (P.B. Winterbottom), and Kellee Santiago of thatgamecompany (flOw).
The advice was wide-ranging, though all the panelists agreed that the best way to get a game noticed is to submit it to as many competitions and festivals as possible. Swift specifically noted that it's a good idea to literally drag people to come and play your game at festivals and shows like GDC. The game itself should "grab" players as well, with Korba saying that a festival showing of a game should be get players involved within five minutes.