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INTERNATIONAL – With N-Gage now officially released into the wild, Nokia’s newborn mobile gaming platform is gearing up for rapid maturation.

Having already stepped outside the comfort zone of traditional handheld gaming, by offering a totally social networked gaming solution, signs of the speedy evolution of N-Gage are already sprouting.

A few of weeks back we saw Will Shen, N-Gage Head of Production in North America, emphasizing the focus on innovation, and more news on Project White Rock – the highest production value mobile game ever, featuring multiplayer interaction between mobile and PC.

And now, has reported on Nokia’s new Mobile Games Innovation Challenge:

“Nokia’s clearly going all out to get developers excited about mobile gaming, and one such encouragement is its Mobile Games Innovation Challenge… The three most innovative game concepts will be offered pre-production contracts from Nokia, with the winner awarded ‚Ǩ40,000, together with a second place prize of ‚Ǩ20,000 and a third prize of ‚Ǩ10,000 which are designed to enable the winners to further develop their concepts.”

This new contest is further evidence to support the mantra of innovation championed by Will Shen, and is almost certain to generate some exciting new twists on the mobile gaming theme.

Oh, and if you didn’t catch it, check out this funny vid by Electric Playground, of the ‘unveiling’ of N-Gage…

What do you think of the new N-Gage platform?