Rules, Judging & Formalities (2014)

Competition Rules

Attention - FYI! Oracle has announced that applets will have to be signed starting early next year 2014. Because of this we have decide to create a launcher that will be capable of launching unsigned applets.

The rules for the 2014 contest are as follows:

  1. The final game package (byte code + resources) must be below or equal to 4096 bytes
  2. Must be a playable game (cannot be a pointless animation)
  3. Must be pure Java (no JNI)
  4. Must be self-contained- no external resources (e.g. loading an image from a website)
  5. No external libraries may be used - you must use the libraries that come with the "public" version of the JRE
  6. No soundbanks may be used because they are not a default part of the "public" JRE. You will have to create your sounds at runtime rather than use MIDIs.
  7. The game must be an Applet (No more Webstart). (refer to "Applet Requirements" section for more details)
  8. Target JRE is 1.7 (Java 7). (For backwards compatibility we still recommend 1.6, but 1.7 is permitted.)
  9. Must not be identical to a game submitted previously.
  10. Games that break copyright, e.g. clones, will be removed and disqualified if the copyright holder demands it.
  11. No more than 10 games per developer.

Applet Requirements

Up until 2010 Webstart was used to launch the games. It was then decided to replace Webstart with Applets. Here are some requirements regarding the Applets:

Some Applet code templates have been provided on a JGO discussion forum, use whatever suits your game.


If there is a need for the game to be signed and the signed game package exceeds 4096 bytes, then an unsigned game package, that is below or equal to 4096 bytes, must be provided.

Networking & Multiplayer


Yes, it is allowed.

Final note

As with all contests and rules, it is impossible to forsee every possibility. Therefore, the administration reserves the right to reject games that do not follow the spirit of the 4K competition, e.g. try to cheat or bypass competition rules.

Dates & Submission Period

The Java4K 2014 submission period spans from December 1st 2012 and ends February 28th 2015. Results of the competition will be displayed on this site shortly there after, hopefully no later than 2-3 weeks after the competition closes, although this can vary depending on how many games are submitted.

Judging & Community Voting process

Note, the judging process for 2014 could change. Consider these tentative rules until new ones have been introduced.

The voting process will consist of a panel of judges, who will write a review and assign a score (0-100%) for each game, and also a community voting process.

Judging panel voting and community voting are separate and the results are not merged together.

Community voting (Note: these rules can change and should be considered tentative)

The voting arrangement are yet to be refined.

Judging panel

The judging panel will consist of a 3-5 judges (refer to "Judges" section).

Currently there is no plan to give prizes.

2014 Judging Panel