Two indie video game development companies based in Prince Edward Island have signed exclusive publishing deals with Toronto-based game publisher, Throwback Entertainment.

Throwback announced last month that it had signed the deals to publish Rabbit Hole Studios’ game The Lost Gardens, and Queen Bee Games’ Onion Force.

Created by the acquisition of Acclaim Entertainment in 2006, Throwback develops, creates, and publishes immersive and interactive gaming titles, developing its own content and publishing the intellectual property of other studios.

In one statement, the publisher said it was publishing Onion Force in association with Innovation PEI, and that it is the first title in a new joint-effort to increase exposure of the gaming industry within Canada and P.E.I.

Throwback signed a publishing deal with Queen Bee Games to distribute Onion Force on the App Store, Google Play and also on Steam, a digital distribution platform for independent video games.

The statement describes Onion Force as an Action Adventure/Tower Defence hybrid game with more than 30 levels.

Onion Force is the latest product of Queen Bee Games, which was formed by married developers Kathleen and Steven Cassidy in 2015 with the goal of establishing a creative-led studio with a focus on fresh visual styles and immersive gameplay.

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“Queen Bee Games is very excited to move forward with the partnership with Throwback Entertainment,” said Kathleen Cassidy in a statement. “We strongly believe that the path that lies ahead will be one worth travelling for all involved.”

Onion Force is now available for download on Steam with a suggested price of US$4.99. It is also available for purchase on the App Store for US$1.99 and on the Google Play Store for US$.99.

Meanwhile, Rabbit Hole launched the first chapter of The Lost Garden for early access on Steam in October 2017. Shortly after its early-access launch, the game won Fan Favourite Digital Game at this year’s Gameacon Crystal Awards in New Jersey.

The Lost Garden is Rabbit Hole’s third development. It’s an action adventure game in which the player assumes the role of The Caretaker, a robot tasked with saving the world.

“Throwback is extremely excited to have a publishing deal with Rabbit Hole Studios,” Jeff Zukowski, Director of Marketing and Publishing at Throwback Entertainment, said in a statement. “Our team is very eager to deliver a full story experience to those fans who have loved this title since day one”

The contract with Throwback will bring The Lost Garden out of early access, where it currently retails for $2.99 per download, and onto the main Steam platform.

Like many jurisdictions, P.E.I. offers incentives to develop a local gaming industry. Innovation PEI, a provincial government department, also encourages the growth of the sector through its Gameplan PEI program. This coordinates the growth of game development studios, testing services, customer service centers and audio studios.

As well as co-ordination and financial incentives, the Island’s ecosystem for the gaming industry include programs for video games at both Holland College and University of Prince Edward Island, and GameForce, an extra-curricular program offered to junior high school students to teach them the basics of 2D and 3D game design.


Disclosure: Innovation PEI is a client of Entrevestor.