last year. As the IGF announcement notes, several of last year's finalists came to Valve's portal after being nominated, including Gone Home, MirrorMoon EP, and Kentucky Route Zero. The award is no doubt illustrious, but a Steam distribution agreement is a big deal, too.
Fine print time: The offer applies to every Main Competition finalist in jury-voted categories. That means each finalist for the Seamus McNally Grand Prize, the Nuovo Award, and the Excellence in Art, Narrative, Audio, and Design Awards can have a bite of the Steam pie, working directly with Valve to release their games on PC, Mac, and Linux.
The deadline for IGF 2014 submissions is October 19, while entries for the student showcase are due by October 31. The finalists will be announced in January, and two months later the winners will be crowned at GDC 2014.