Rovio's Angry Birds and Zynga's FarmVille for iPhone are among the nominees announced today for best handheld device game in the 15th annual Webby Awards.
The high profile titles are up against Halfbrick's Fruit Ninja, Sesame Workshop's Elmo's Monster Maker and AMC's Mad-Men-sponsored virtual bartending app Cocktail Culture in the category. Guitar Hero III: Backstage Pass won the award in 2009, before the category was put on hold in 2010.
The awards, now in their 15th year, also debuted an award specifically for games on "tablet & all other devices" this year. Among the nominees in the category are word game Jambalaya, musical racing game Rhythm Racer 2, alternate reality title Tron Legacy: Circuit Pulse and educational games GoodieWords and Grover's Number Special.
Zynga's CityVille leads-off nominees in the awards' long-running web-based Games category, up against Nickelodeon's social Petpet Park and Adult Swim's auto-scrolling platformer Robot Unicorn Attack. The category also includes a game-like promotional site for LucasArts' Lego: Star Wars III and the British Museum's interactive Time Explorer learning experience.
Previous winners in the category include child-focused social game Club Penguin, web-game portal Kongregate and Amanita Design's Samorost 2.
Nominees in the Webby Awards are chosen from entrants that pay a fee ranging from $150 to $295 for consideration by a panel of expert judges from the International Academy of Digital Arts & Sciences. Winners chosen by those judges and in an AOL-sponsored "People's Voice" vote will be announced at a gala event June 13.