Update: The Watcher

Take a look at Joshua Pantalleresco’s blog, you won’t be disappointed. First Age Studios is happy to promote and support Josh’s newest work; The Watcher. It’s coming soon and you’ll be able to find it on http://www.firstagestudios.com and we’re really excited about it. Check it out and remember; There is More.

Joshua Pantalleresco

Barring anything unexpected, The Watcher will be ready next week.  I’m excited, nervous, scared to death and all the normal things you are when you are about to release the project.

I need to take a special moment and thank Justine Alley Dowsett and Murandy Damodred for their help in the last stretch.    I appreciated their help when I looked at the whole ISBN concept.  I could go american or canadian (Canadian is SO much easier. I feel sorry for American independents.  Jeebus!)  They stepped in and helped me out here, and I will be grateful.  Check out their link here.  They offer books, games and other cool things, including work from this bum writing this blog right now.

Not a big thing to be excited about but I look at the link here and can’t help but smile.  It’s not a big thing in the grand scheme of…

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Website is under renovations!

So you may have wandered over the First Age Studios website… if you did, you would have noticed that everything has changed. The site is not 100% complete yet, but that major overhaul I hinted at is now underway. You can check out the new look here: http://www.firstagestudios.com

Not only are we updating our look, but we’re also making room for all sorts of new content. We have two new games on their way, both on the Android Mobile platform; Bovine Bash and Off the Hook. We have also added a whole new section for ‘Our Books’ as we are now officially a small publisher of paperbacks and e-books! For right now, you can read a synopsis of the books we have available and soon links will be provided to where you can purchase them as well.

Keep an eye on the Facebook Page for notification of when the site is ready to go, but feel free to take a look around and see what First Age Studios has to offer in games, books, and website/graphic design services. And while you’re there, don’t forget to meet the team on our about us page!

Justine Alley Dowsett


Windsor Essex Book Expo this Sunday!

The official release date has yet to be determined (though, don’t worry, I will be informing you as soon as I have that information available) but Murandy Damodred and I will have advanced copies of our new novel with us at the Windsor Essex Book Expo this weekend only Sunday from 10am to 5pm at the Caboto Club in Windsor, Ontario. We’d really like if you could come out and see us and you can pick up a copy of Mirror’s Hope and get it signed by both of us while your there!

Mirror’s Hope is our first novel to be published by First Age Studios and it’s also the studio’s first published novel, so it’s really an exciting occasion and we’re happy to be able to celebrate it by attending the Windsor Essex Book Expo as we had a blast there last year and this year’s event will only be bigger and better.

Last year, the expo was held in Essex and had a remarkable turn out despite it’s rather out of the way location. This year we’ll be centrally located in Windsor at the Caboto Club which is not only easy to find, but also a bigger venue. There will be 60+ other local authors there with all sorts of books of varying genres and ages. For any book lover, or local small business supporter, this event is something you must try and attend!

For more information about the expo visit: http://www.windsoressexauthors.com/

And for more info about Mirror’s Hope, see other posts on this blog, or come check out or facebook page:  https://www.facebook.com/pages/First-Age-Studios-Publications/122837281113118

Or the website, but it’s currently under renovations: http://www.firstagestudios.com

Hope to see you there!


Stepping into the Crimson Winter with Justine Alley Dowsett

If you haven’t yet gotten a chance to read this, please do! Josh has a great blog and fortunately, he’s a fan of Crimson Winter and my writing.

Joshua Pantalleresco

I’ve been feeling a little guilty about this one.  I’ve been talking to Justine for a little while now and I’ve been promising her this interview.  Little did I know that it would take years to get it to this point.  That said, it seems a case of the stars aligning as Justine is set to release her next book Mirror’s Hope, I talked to her about it, her previous series Crimson Winter,  her writing process and the theatre.

Joshua Pantalleresco: When did you decide to become a writer?

Justine Alley Dowsett: It wasn’t really a decision so much as it’s always been my dream to be an author. I started writing seriously in high school. By seriously,I just mean all the time. I wrote a kids book series that will never see the light of day, but writing it taught me the discipline of writing every day…

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Making Progress with Mirror’s Hope!

MHpostcardfront copySunday night I got the cover art image sent to me by Sara Biddle and so I got to spend (Canadian) Thanksgiving Monday entirely wrapped up in the use of Photoshop to make not only the book cover, but also all our marketing materials. I’m extremely excited to be able to share with you all the wonderful work that Sara Biddle has done for us; Murandy and I are very pleased with the results.  If you want to check out the rest of Sara’s artwork please visit her site, here.

The character depicted is Lyana, the alter ego of our main character, Mirena Calanais. She’s beautiful, confident, and seductive… all the things that Mirena doesn’t believe herself capable of being. Lyana exists to do what Mirena would be too scared to do on her own; seduce the most powerful man in the world in order to overthrow the system of government he represents.

Learn more about Lyana  and Mirena by reading Mirror’s Hope!

More news on the official release date soon, but in the meantime we hope to have advance copies ready in time for Colasanti’s Fall Art and Craft Show, November 2nd from 10am to 5pm in Kingsville, Ontario and the Windsor Essex Book Expo on November 24th at the Caboto Club in Windsor, Ontario. More information on the book and these upcoming events can be found on our Facebook page.  Come out and visit us and support local authors!

MHpostcardback copy


Meet Michael Patoine: Technical Director Extraordinaire!

Hi, everyone.  Justine normally does these, but since I knew that I’d be next up, I decided to sneak in here and write a bit about myself.  I’m a Libra, blood type O+, and 178cm tall (or 1.78m for those of you who have a hard time converting decimals).  I like sweets, video games, and romantic walks.  My lucky number is 4, and the game I most recently played is Virtue’s Last Reward on 3DS.

As the title of this post suggests, I’m the technical director of the group.  What it all boils down to is, I’m responsible for any decisions involving the tech we use, for making sure that everything we use is working smoothly, and for programming/scripting all the products we make.  Of course, this guy explains the technical part of it far better than I ever could.

I was first introduced to coding in 1998, when I started writing my own webpage [insert geocities link here] in html.  I grew up in Kapuskasing, a small, isolated community in Northern Ontario, where if you don’t play hockey, there’s not much to do, so I spent a large amount of time in front of the computer.  In high school, I took a couple computer courses, mostly learning how to approach simple problems using Visual Basic.  In university, I took an intro to C course, and was ranked 3rd in my class of 80.  Fun fact – university is where I met Justine.  When we met, she hated my guts (a surprisingly common first impression I leave), but now we get along swimmingly, so I’m told.  When I finished university, I went to TriOS college to study game development, which is where I really learned the tools of the trade.   While there, I learned from a guy who made this and a guy who went on to make this.  When I graduated, I started working at Cerebral Vortex Games, which is where I met the very talented Erica.  Since CVG closed its doors, it’s been one wild adventure.

At the time that I’m writing this, I am working on two Android games, a Flash game, and re-working our website, which gives you an idea of how busy we keep ourselves.  Once those are out, we’ve got even more exciting ideas lined up.  I can’t go into details yet, but I’m looking forward to what will be coming up. 

I always have lots to say, but I’m not always allowed on these public forms (some of our playtesters have seen my lack of tact).  If you guys want to hear more from me, have questions you want answered from me, want me to go more in detail about what I do or my process, or simply want to hear one of my many anectodes (learning to fly in 7 weeks, being invited to supper by the ruler of a country, programming 90% of a game with a stuffed rat on my head, punching a shark in the nose – only one of those is made up), then leave a comment.  If you’re into Facebook, like and share this post, and if you’re not, then keep up the good fight.


Code Monkey: The last member of the DK crew

Meet the Business and Marketing Director: (Me!) Justine Alley Dowsett

When I started writing these introductions, I never really considered the fact that I would have to write my own, but that too inevitably falls under the wide variety of tasks and responsibilities that make up my contribution to the running of First Age Studios. My official title is ‘Business and Marketing Director’ but I basically do everything that isn’t programming, art, music or creating media, except sometimes I do a little of that too… As much as I can or can learn to do anyways, or as needed by the rest of the team.

Officially, I handle all business related details. Budgeting, planning, organizing, communicating with staff, clients, contractors and the public. I also handle marketing, run our weekly meetings and keep the schedule up to date and everyone on task. In reality I fill in wherever necessary, which when it comes to video games is usually in design, Q and A, and anything everyone else is too busy to do.

Let’s see… what else can I tell you about myself? Before First Age Studios, I attended the University of Windsor for Drama, worked long hours in the customer service and hospitality industry, and wrote science fiction and fantasy novels on the side. Publishing and marketing my own books is what really taught me how to be an entrepreneur, how to manage my time effectively and how to market my own products. Now I do all of that for First Age Studios and I’m happy to say that I have another book coming soon. This time I’m branching out into Fantasy Romance with Mirror’s Hope and I hope for big things for me and the studio with its release.

Learn more about me by following FAS on Facebook, twitter, or here on wordpress.com as I’m also the one who keeps you up to date with our projects!

Thanks for supporting us!

Justine Alley Dowsett


A Shout Out to Biz X Magazine!

Yesterday I had the chance to attend the monthly networking event hosted by BizX Magazine, the Biz Mixer. If you’re a business professional or entrepreneur in the Windsor area, you’ve probably heard of it, or at least know the magazine and if you haven’t, you should definitely be checking it out.


Last night’s mixer was held downtown at the Kilt and Fiddle, an Irish Pub. Each month the event is hosted at a different local venue, but what made this one so remarkable was that it is the same location the very first Biz Mixer was ever held at, which is also the very first Mixer that Michael C.A. Patoine and I ever attended. We haven’t been to every one of them since, but near enough and we’ve met so many great people and contacts in our area doing so. Being back at the Kilt and Fiddle rally gave me the sense of everything coming full circle and took me right back to the time where we were a small start-up looking to find a way to break into our industry and to the market in Windsor. The pros at Biz X and the local business owners really welcomed us and made networking seem easy.

So here’s a shout-out to Biz X Magazine. Thank you Deborah Jones and everyone else at the magazine for putting this great event together every month. It’s been a real help to us here getting on our feet and meeting people who’ve either become friends, business contacts, or even clients of ours. The prizes we’ve won at these events haven’t gone unappreciated either!

One last thing, Biz X Magazine is hosting their annual Biz X Awards and we’ve received a nomination in their website category. I know our website is currently under construction, but if you like our work and want to support us you can head down to http://www.bizxmagazine.com/nominations.php and vote for us, or check out some of the many categories to nominate some of your other favorite businesses in the Windsor area.

Wonderful Website Wizards

(the company that exudes excellence in producing unique, eye catching, professional and functional websites, and provides the technical expertise to support them.)



Meet our new Manager of Media and Publications: Murandy Damodred!


We’re proud to introduce to you one of the newest members of our team!

It’s difficult to pinpoint exactly when Murandy began to work for us. She’s tested games, provided feedback and started out really putting in the hours when she started making our video game trailers for youtube.com

From a background of screenwriting and video editing, Murandy has a BA in Drama and Communications from the University of Windsor. She also has long years of experience in the sales and customer service industry dealing mainly in cellphones. So when we started making mobile games, her feedback became invaluable and when we decided to expand into publishing novels and creating promotional videos for our projects and clients, Murandy was the logical choice.

Now, heading our Publications division along with myself, Murandy is proud to announce that our first fiction novel is one that she’s co-authored. Mirror’s Hope, book one of the proposed ‘Mirror Worlds’ series is a dark fantasy romance novel for adults filled with intrigue, seduction and betrayal of all kinds.

We hope it will be ready for release this November, with a local launch here in Windsor, Ontario before it is available online in e-book and paperback forms! Follow us here, on facebook or twitter for more updates!





Meet our Artist: Erica Villeneuve!


Erica Villeneuve is one of the three founding members of First Age Studios. As Art Director she is responsible for the individual art assets as well as the layout and design of all of our games, websites, logos and advertisements.

Erica has a graduate certificate for Game art and Design from Seneca College and has completed her Honours BA in Visual Art at Brock University. She enjoys 2D and 3D art and is a pro when it comes to Adobe Photoshop, 3D Studio Max, zBrsuh, ViconBlade, Adobe Illustrator and Adobe Flash.

An accomplished graphic designer, Erica comes to us following her experience working with Michael C.A. Patoine at Cerebral Vortex Games as Lead Artist and then with a website company called “What’s on Thorold.” She currently lives in St. Catharines, Ontario with her fiancee, where she not only makes video games, but also plays them often.

Erica’s hobbies include: Video Games, Martial Arts, Blacksmithing and Armour Making, as well as drawing, painting and watching movies.

She’d be happy to design a logo for you or your business, custom design a graphic or advertisement, make a website or all the art for your video game concept. Contact her at info@firstagestudios.com today or learn more at www.firstagestudios.com