Alec Holowka

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Alec Holowka
Occupation Programmer, Designer and Musician, Bit Blot, Infinite Ammo

Alec Holowka is a Canadian independent game developer, co-founder of an independent game company Bit Blot,[1] and Infinite Ammo, where he works as lead programmer, musician and game designer. He collaborated with Derek Yu to create the award-winning game Aquaria and freeware game I'm O.K - A Murder Simulator.

Background[edit]

Alec Holowka was introduced to programming at the age of eight when his father purchased him a book Basic Fun. Eventually he began working with a free ware group called Zaphire Productions. Since then he worked for a number of failed start ups, including one in Winnipeg, Canada working on a PC multi-player fantasy action title and a combat racer in Vancouver, Canada for the Xbox 360.[2]

Two men stand behind a podium marked Independent Games Festival, while a woman in a blue dress stands to the left.
Jenna Sharpe, Alec Holowka and Derek Yu accepting the grand prize at the 2007 Independent Games Festival.

Holowka acted as sound engineer on the 2006 freeware title I'm O.K - A Murder Simulator as a response to American lawyer Jack Thompson's A Modest Video Game Proposal. Holowka met Derek Yu in the comments section of popular technology website Slashdot in a post regarding Jack Thompson's proposal and along with Chris Hanson and Phil Jones formed satire company Thompsonsoft for the once off release.[3]

After its release Holowka introduced Yu to a project he had been working on independently, Yu was interested in the project and the two officially formed developer Bit Blot the week before the Independent Games Festival deadline.[1] The project was released on 7 December 2007 under the title Aquaria and was the recipient of the Independent Games Festival Seumas McNally grand prize for best game in March 2007.

Current projects[edit]

Gameography[edit]

Crayon Physics Deluxe[edit]

Main article: Crayon Physics Deluxe

Some music.

I'm O.K.[edit]

I'm O.K. is a side-scrolling satirical platform shoot-em-up, which was created by Derek Yu (art), Alec Holowka (sound), and Chris Hanson (code) as a response to Jack Thompson's open letter, "A Modest Video Game Proposal." It is a "retro" style arcade game, which parodies various famous games, game companies, and game developers. The main protagonist of the game is Osaki Kim, who blames the video game industry for the death of his child. The player takes the role of the Osaki Kim as he shoots his way up to the E3 Media and Business Summit, killing game developers along the way.

Aquaria[edit]

Alec composed the score for Aquaria.

Problems playing this file? See media help.
Main article: Aquaria (video game)

Aquaria is an action adventure game, based heavily on exploration. It is an epic story about adventures of Naija, an amnesiac underwater creature, who is in search of information about her family and her past. She explores many ancient ruins of Aquaria, an underwater world created by a mysterious creator. Created by Derek Yu and Alec Holowka, Aquaria is their first commercial game and the winner of the Independent Games Festival's 2007 Seumas McNally Grand Prize.[6]

Owl Country[edit]

In early 2008, Holowka along with a group of other independent developers during the Game Developers Conference 2008 in San Francisco, California created a project with most of the work being done at their hotel, the Holiday Inn. Holowka acted as musician and programmer. The project was created as a response to an incident occurring following Kokoromi's Gamma 256 party following the Montreal International Game Summit in Montreal, Canada.[7]

Paper Moon[edit]

On 15 August 2008 Holowka, along with newly formed developer Infinite Ammo, created Paper Moon, a game that was picked along with another five games to be showcased at the 2008 GAMMA event.[8]

Everyone Loves Active 2[edit]

Holowka wrote the music for Kyle Pulver’s freeware game, Everyone Loves Active 2.[9]

Verge[edit]

Holowka teamed up with Pulver again for Verge, providing the game's music. Verge is a short side scrolling platformer focused on life and death. It was created for and won The Independent Gaming Source's Commonplace Book Competition. An extended version of the game is currently in development.[10]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Bitblot - company". Bit Blot. Retrieved 2008-11-18. 
  2. ^ Wallis, Alistair (October 23, 2006). "Road To The IGF: Bit Blot's Aquaria". Gamasutra. Archived from the original on 21 December 2008. Retrieved 2008-11-18. 
  3. ^ Tucker, Michael (February 16, 2006). "4cr Interview - Thompsonsoft". 4 Color Rebellion. Retrieved 2008-11-18. 
  4. ^ Holowka, Alec (October 25, 2008). "Bit Blot Forum Post". Bit Blot. Retrieved 2008-11-18. 
  5. ^ Holowka, Alec (October 17, 2011). "Alone on Infinite Ammo's Blog". Infinite Ammo. Retrieved November 14, 2011. 
  6. ^ "2007 Independent Games Festival Winners". IGF. Archived from the original on 16 December 2008. Retrieved 2008-11-18. 
  7. ^ "TIG Forum Post". TIG. November 18, 2008. Retrieved 2008-11-18. 
  8. ^ "Kokoromi - Gamma 3D Featured Games Announced". Kokoromi. Archived from the original on 19 November 2008. Retrieved 2008-11-18. 
  9. ^ "Everyone Loves Active 2 Profile". Kyle Pulver. May 31, 2008. Archived from the original on 20 December 2008. Retrieved 2008-11-18. 
  10. ^ "Verge Profile". Kyle Pulver. November 29, 2008. Archived from the original on 3 December 2008. Retrieved 2008-11-29. 

External links[edit]