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Creating Games In Hawaii


Aloha from Hawaii!

Since I last wrote, my life has been flipped-turned upside down, and Iíd like to take a minute, so sit right there, and Iíll tell you how I ended up on an isle out here.

My new indie game dev studio Wicked Loot got accepted into an accelerator program out in Hawaii. So I gathered the team, packed up my bags, kissed my wife and dog goodbye, and headed out to the middle of the pacific.

This isnít just about a new life as a game creator. Itís about starting off fresh, with a new mindset. And I figured what better way to do that than on the beach with a Pina Colada.

Itís been a whirlwind though. Not easy or cheap to find a place to live in Hawaii. After calling over 30 places, I finally locked down a condo to live for 3 months, and had to fork over $5000 a month just for rent. Even with that amount, one of my team members still has to sleep on the floor in the living room.

Living in Hawaii is not cheap. 4 apples cost about $8. A jar of mayo ran us over $8. Pretty much within the first week here, the amount of investment dollars that came from our involvement with Blue Startups is gone!

But Iíll tell you what. Itís been worth it. Itís given our team a chance to bond, to really get our hand dirty building a game, to connect with mentors and advisors who are sharp as a whip, and itís given me a chance to admire the local hotties. And man, Hawaiian girls are really the best.

Itís been a nonstop and rather ironic experience so far. Play hard. Work hard. Yet the Hawaiian way is to just take it easy.

I figure thatís enough talk. Here are some pics to enjoy! BTW - If you want to see more pics of our adventures in Hawaii, follow us on Facebook!

Packing up ready to head out to Hawaii.

Buying a mattress is as fun as it looks.

Oh shit! That's Master Higgins!

Our office.

Our Wicked team.

Our view from our office.

If you can't guess, the Blue Startups accelerator was founded by the guy who made Tetris famous.

Me and some of the other companies participating in Blue Startups.

The team and I enjoying the best udon in the island.

Work hard. But work comfortably.

A Doodle Jump arcade game? I'm equally "Man, that is dumb as hell" and "Anyone got a quarter?"

A gal who is running for Miss Hawaii in June. She's got my support.

The amazing Taimane. Man. She's hot. And can jam too.
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About johnmasterleeone of us since 2:56 PM on 02.11.2013


I'm a game developer, and head up several gaming studios, including Wicked Loot and FitGoFun. Been in the game industry for many years now. It's the only life I know.

I pretty much done it all. QA. Marketing. Game Design. Coding. Editor. The guy who had to wear the (stank) mascot costume at a gaming event. The guy who drove a truck to deliver games to a warehouse. For the love of the game.

It's sorta about games. But mostly about my life.