Hello friends!

I hope the new decade is off to a good start for you all! It certainly has had its ups and downs for many so far – Schotti and myself included. But this first month was quite eventful and not without its share of incredibly cool surprises!

In case you didn’t know, I am based in the Canadian city of Regina, Saskatchewan. Being the hermit that I am, it took me until the beginning of this year to start going to events in the local gamedev community, and I have to admit it was super rewarding to finally do so.

I never thought of Regina as having too much going for it in this particular industry, until I met the CEO of Massive Corporation Game Studios, Kai Hutchence. Kai is viewed as somewhat of a leader in the independent gamedev community in Regina, organizing events and opportunities for a quickly growing number of people who are passionate about making their creative dreams a reality.

Sam playing one of Kai’s games, Pandora Saga, at QC Anifest 2018

Heck, the first time I met Kai in person was when he let me set up Crabby’s Souvenir Shop at his table in QC Anifest 2018 – my first time as a convention vendor! Since then his work in the community has continued making an impact, and after this past weekend at the Global Game Jam event I attended (as a spectator), I can honestly say Regina is jam-packed full of potential gamedev successes who are genuinely awesome people!

Justin Bender, Nykola Reed and I were featured in the Leader-Post!

It is great to see how much difference one person can make and how it can positively affect a community. But I am particularly grateful for how Massive Corporation has affected my life recently. On the last day of January, the same day I was featured in a very cool article about local gamedevs in the Leader-Post (also thanks to Kai), I came to the Global Game Jam kick-off party because I was told there would be gluten-free snacks. It sounded like a fun time and the winner of the Massive Sacks of Cash grant would be announced – an event worthy of an audience, after all. But when the winner turned out to be me, I was at an embarrassing loss for words!

Global News Regina even covered the story!

I felt both incredibly honoured and somewhat guilty that others didn’t win, but everyone was really kind and offered congratulations. I want to thank all of them for that, because it means a lot. I also want to make the most of this opportunity and help it influence more support for independent game developers here, as these folks deserve it. Massive Corporation has done so much already, and I hope others will follow this example in contributing to grow the industry in Saskatchewan.

Game presentations at Regina’s Global Game Jam 2019
Global Game Jam 2019 in Regina
There was even an escape room built by Dunc and team!

As you can see below, a large portion of my Wall of Milestones is thanks to the help of one person. It just goes to show that there are good people in the world who believe in our dreams and will support us if we give it our best. I also have all of you to thank for the many forms of support you’ve shown to myself and Schotti. We really couldn’t do any of what we do without our friends rooting for us!

Wall of Milestones and Other Junk
Some new additions to the Wall of Milestones and Other Junk!

I believe there are even more great things ahead for the Cheekynauts thanks to this community and all the support and opportunities given to us. 2020 is going to be a Massive year for Moonshell Island and Santria!

Please check out Massive Corporation on Twitter and their game, Queen City Chaos. Working so hard to build an industry against all odds, helping others succeed, and organizing all of this while building a game is exhausting. Let’s show our support for good people like Kai Hutchence and the Regina GameDev community!

Thanks for reading!

Your friend,