Hot on the heels of his 2016 National STEM Video Game Challenge win for the music-themed game Allegria, 18-year-old Connor Shugg was even more ambitious with this year’s submission. Inspired by his experience in the classroom, Connor’s new platformer game The Calculus Test utilizes word problems as themes for each level, with test-taking stress manifesting as enemy sprites and weapons representing various mathematical operations. Thanks to his inventive concept and detailed original assets, including music and graphics, Connor, from Apex, North Carolina, won the High School GameMaker title in the 2017 National STEM Video Game Challenge.
In the fall, Connor will attend Virginia Tech and plans to major in computer science. “My dream job would be as an indie game developer,” he explains. Connor also hopes to carry on his passion for trumpet and marching band by joining Virginia Tech’s team, the Marching Virginians. His other hobbies include swimming, playing frisbee gold, watching movies like Lord of the Rings, and hanging out with friends.
“If you’re looking to create a game of your own, study each element of the game development spectrum: programming and logic, storytelling, music composition, and sprite drawing/animation,” Connor suggests. “Stay determined, give it your all, and don’t settle for mediocre! Your hard work will be rewarded.”