Most of us may not be aware that LEGO has been in the business of creating video games for more than two decades already. Beginning with its first PC-based action-adventure video game LEGO Island, the LEGO Group has proven that learning and having fun can be a very potent combination, especially for children. Released almost 20 years ago, the LEGO Island video game has become a game changer in the field of educational entertainment and was pretty popular after its debut in 1997. It led the way to the creation and development of the exploratory sandbox gaming concept as clearly seen in all of LEGO’s current video game titles. We owe this out-of-the-box gaming/learning experience to the extraordinary genius of a very special guy named Wes Jenkins. For most of us who grew up in the 90s, Wes will always be remembered as the creative think-tank and writer behind the first major LEGO video game credited for giving birth to other unique and highly successful LEGO video game titles. Needless to say, we owe this to the brilliance of one man who inspired and helped generations of children develop their creativity and critical thinking.
This time around, the creator and developer of LEGO Island needs our help. Wes has been stricken lately with serious health and financial hardship, including the very real threat of being evicted from their home. It is not his habit to ask for help as attested by those closest to him, but as you may read from his GoFundMe page, the situation is so dire that he describes it as a ‘Life and Death’ situation. Wes has only until the 19th of this month to arrange for some temporary shelter to protect him and his wife Kyle from the extremely harsh weather of Texas where they are currently residing. You can know more about his specific circumstances and needs over at his GoFundMe page as mentioned above. One of his close friends Sadie, has also written an excellent piece on how Wes touched the lives of many and you can read it right here along with other testimonials from concerned members from the AFOL community. It is our goal to raise the needed $50,000 to help them make it through this very difficult moment in their life. As of this writing, the fund is now at $6,592 with three more days to reach our objective. Even if you can’t commit to help financially as of the moment, passing and sharing this info can go a very long way.
Know more about Wes Jenkins and his creative work with LEGO Island through this interview courtesy of Video Game Flashback. He maintains a website where he brightness anyone’s day through a series of daily doodles that he creates, and another website that outline the highlights of his professional career.