Oh yes, the past can hurt. But from the way I see it, you can either run from it, or learn from it. -Rafiki
12th Game jam with UQAC. The theme for this edition was It’s not a glitch, it’s a feature and our required styles were Tabletop, Chance and Turn-Based. We were only 4 for this jam so we decided scope the project carefully in order to focus more on the gameplay and less on the production of assets. We wanted our game to take place in an environment reminiscent of well-known table games but with a twist to really attach the theme.
This edition of the Game Over event in our part of the country is particularly close to our hearts. This is the first event in which we have had the chance to participate with the public since the implementation of health measures. We are happy to see our players again and to try out all the projects we have carried out since. A big motivator for the future!
11th Game jam with UQAC. The theme for this edition is Dilemma and our imposed styles are Survival, Chance and Combat. We wanted the dilemma to have a strategic impact on the course of the game. We also knew that we had to limit ourselves because we got too carried away during the last Game jam. Faster Than Goo is part of the vision of a game where the characters are in a spaceship and have to make decisions…see where we got our inspiration from?
Our 10th participation in the Wonderjam UQAC deserves to be celebrated with even more robots. For this great event and the Connection theme mixed with the Combat and COOP styles, we created Robotrio, a game where 3 players control the same giant robot together. We need 3 different control modes, an interface for managing the robot’s energy, enemies attacking us, a gun, a shield, a jump, a jetpack… So we decide to put all the pressure on Gab in order to make way too many features for 48h.
Dream come true! We finally released Zombiotik on console today! If you’re ready for some fun, you can now play against others who can compete with you at home on the Xbox One, Nintendo Switch and PlayStation 4-5.Thanks again to everyone who supported us all along!
9th Game jam with UQAC. The theme for this edition is Resistance and our imposed styles are Arcade and Versus. Resistance makes us think of resisting so as not to fall in combat, but also of the resistance found in electrical circuits… We decide to mix all that up to give our take on “Robot Wars” which we imagine in a Victorian setting called Clockwork Combat where players customize their mini clockwork robot battling on a poker table in a saloon basement.
8th Game jam with UQAC. The theme for this edition is When Magic Goes Wrong and our imposed styles are Arcade, Survival. Sam came up with the best pun ever featuring brooms and explosions: Badabroom a game where we use our cell phone as a controller to drive a flying broomstick, pick up spells and throw fireballs to knock our opponents off. Harry Potter can go back where he came from.
7th Game jam with UQAC. The theme for this edition is Frenzy. Wicked good luck! We remember our arcade experiences and we launch into Potato Phone, a game where players grouped together use their mobile phone as an interactive card that they must exchange with other players so that it is not the player who finds himself with the potato in his hands at the end of the counter. We remained relatively discreet with this game.
6th Game jam with UQAC. Whoa! The Wonderjam team has set up an arcade that will be installed at the entrance in a common area of the university. Teams even get extra points if they make a game compatible with the machine controls. The theme for this edition is Cataclysm in the year 2119 and our imposed styles are Arcade and Multiplayer. Wicked good luck! We remember our arcade experiences and we start working on King of Trash, a fighting game with a big social criticism of consumer society.
5th Game jam with UQAC. YAY! The place is crowded with a whole bunch of creative, passionate and energy drink-thirsty developers and students. The theme for this edition is Pressure and our imposed styles are adventure, dialogues and puzzle. Since we always try something new, we try to make a….Solo game this time! With our team of 6 and 48 whole hours, we create Beer, Please!, a game where you play as the bartender in a train.
We thought: “Why don’t we go to PAX East and present Zombiotik?” Well, that’s what we did! We went on a road trip to Boston. The place was HUUUUUGE and packed with LOTS of people. Four days, hundreds of players trying Zombotik, lots of feedback, lots of contacts and a wonderful experience we’ll remember for a long time.
The lil’ guys are once more in the big city! We attend MEGA (Montreal Expo Gaming Arcade) which lasts 3 days and welcomes lots of visitors. This time, we get a wonderful recognition from the public as we end up a finalist for the Public Choice Award. Thanks for everyone who voted for us. A big motivation for boost for the upcoming weeks!
For our 4th Game jam with the UQAC, part of the team wants to try something new. We gather in Sam’s basement and decide to create a VR multiplayer game. The theme for this edition is “Change” and we get exploration, arcade and adventure as imposed styles. We create the “Katahdin” in 48h, an asymmetrical game from 2 to 5 players where the VR user controls a giant nature spirit named Pamola.
The Versus approaches Totema Studio for a custom gaming arcade in its bar, a playful pub with the purpose of bringing together gamers with local multiplayer games and board games experiences … we were made to get along! Since May 31st, Versus visitors can try our games in development!
The whole team goes to Montreal to present School Escape at the Ubisoft Indie Series finale! We did not return to Saguenay with the prize, but we have the honour of being the first studio outside Quebec and Montreal cities to be in the finalists! In addition, we made new friends at Sabotage Studio and Chainsawesome Games.
A 3rd WonderJam at UQAC for Totema Studio! It’s always a crazy weekend! The 2018 theme for all teams: Order and Disorder and the styles that have been imposed to our team were exploration, race and arcade. After a long brainstorm on a game you had to sort objects in an environment, we finally figured out it could be a lot more fun to just put an epic mess! So we made a nice prototype called City Crashers.
We are participating in the second edition of the SAGGEEK which is now a 3-day-long convention. We present 4 prototypes of games and then publish them in privileged access on our Patreon. School Escape is gaining popularity, followed by Zombiotik, Octopuke and The Great Watcher.
Totema Studio is invited by the Centre d’entrepreneuriat et d’essaimage de l’UQAC to the 2017 edition of the IT Forum, an activity aimed at bringing together companies in the IT sector, students and graduates seeking a job. Although we do not currently have positions to fill, we decide to accept the invitation to share our experience in the creation of an independent studio and, who knows, give the bite to other people.
We are participating for the second time at the WonderJam organized by the AEMI-UQAC! For those who have not read the history from the beginning, this is a friendly competition where video game students and other interested parties (us) have 48 hours to design a prototype game with a given theme and constraints. The theme for this edition: “Orwell was right”. As for the constraints, we get dialog, exploration and competition.
On December 10th (aka November 40th), we officially launch Game of Thumbs on iOS and Android and take advantage of the enthusiasm around this 100% made in Saguenay game to talk about us in the regional media. December 12th, we invite family, friends and curious to our launch party at the Moulin à Cie.
We’re at SAGGEEK, the first “Geek” culture festival in Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean organized by Adrénaline 24. Naively, we bring our laptops thinking we can advance our projects during the quieter times. The first visitors, intrigued by our company, ask us if we have games to try. We then install one of the work computers to show them a prototype (No Signal). From that moment until the end of the show, the controllers went from hand to hand and we had the chance to have our prototypes tested by hundreds of people.
We participate in the provincial final of the “Defi OSEntreprendre”. Although we were not awarded the grand prize in our category, we were fortunate enough to meet very interesting people and we returned home with even more motivation than ever (and with a limousine :D)
We are registering for the “Défi OSEntreprendre” in the “Creation of companies” category: “Technological Innovation”. We win the first prize in this category at the local (Saguenay) on April 8, 2016, and then at the regional (Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean) April 29th. No need to tell you how proud we were!
We participate for the first time at the AEMI-UQAC WonderJam, a weekend where students and video game studios try to create a prototype game in 48 hours according to various constraints. In addition to the general theme “Connection”, every team receives specific styles. Our imposed styles are Exploration and Survival in addition to our self-imposed constraint: local multiplayer game. At the end of these 48 hours, we are pleased to present “No Signal”, a cooperative multiplayer game where 2 to 4 players must explore a dense forest in search of the best place to pick up a satellite signal with their phone.
It sounds like the title of a kung fu movie Totema Studio participates in the Accelerator, the web equivalent of “Alexandre et les Conquérents” broadcast to ICI Explora with Alexandre Taillefer. The objective of this competition is to raise awareness among Québec’s technology community. Among the fifty companies presented in the Accelerator, Totema Studio is one of the five finalists.
To let us share our vision and promote our games under development, we launch our website, our Facebook page, as well as a short promotional video for Totema Studio. It’s kind of our coming out!
The roommates talk about their idea to their friends and slowly, more and more enthusiasts get together each Thursday in the apartment to give a hand. Programmers, artists and curious people, all motivated by the idea of an innovative and unifying video game. A “tabletop” version is already on its way, but working to make it a video game is more difficult than expected. In order to learn and become familiar with all the steps involved in designing a video game, the team decides to put the initial project on the ice to focus on a new smaller game.
After serious work to define our business objectives and several hours of writing and coaching, we complete our business plan. This well filled 50-page document gives us a glimpse of the day we will work full-time on our games. We submit this document to the “Création et démarrage d’entreprises” organized by the CEE-UQAC and we win the 2nd place.
In 2013, while washing some dishes, roommates discuss video games. While they talk about the things they like in a good game, they make their own idea of a game that would be fantastic! After some time searching for a similar game, they realize it doesn’t exist yet. How could they experience this amazing game…? Why don’t they create it themselves! Armed with an excel document, some drawing skills and most of all, a lot of fun, they start prototyping their first game.