Noah Covey, 16, loves to play games. Board games, mostly. But he enjoys a game of “Angry Birds” on his phone now and again. And with an interest in math, science, coding and adventure, the teen is now creating app games that can be played on cellphones and iPads.
“I have a passion for games, especially board games,” Covey, a sophomore at Dunwoody High School, said. “Video games I’ve learned to love more and more. And my love for games made me want to make my own.”
Last year, the teen created games called “FlyFall” and “Duskfall” for iOS devices. In “FlyFall,” the player maneuvers a bird that can’t fly but instead falls and must successfully pass through a series of gates on the way down. In “Duskfall,” the player controls an orbiting ball and taps the screen to change the orbit so the ball avoids being struck by falling obstacles.
Both games have different levels of difficulty and with “Duskfall,” Covey, who also plays piano, composed three musical scores for his game.
His decision to start creating his own games began when he was an eighth grader at Peachtree Charter Middle School. He started doing research on how to create a game, he said, and began learning computer programming, taking classes on the online Codeacademy that teaches people how to code for free. He also said he watched several YouTube videos to learn coding language and the basics of creating an app.
Covey, who formed his own company, Quantum Cat Games, said his greatest inspiration for creating games is playing other games and deciding what he likes about them and then tweaking an idea or bringing several ideas together to make something completely new.
Covey said he writes down any good idea he has. He compiles a list. The ideas are typically very vague when first written, but after time and contemplation, Covey will come up with a clearer vision and eventually begin the actual coding and creation.
At any one time, he has about 10 to 15 ideas percolating in his head, he said.
Covey self-published “FlyFall,” which he released last January. It’s had about 2,000 downloads. With “Duskfall,” Covey did more research and hired Nanovation Labs, a mobile publisher located in Silicon Valley, Calif., to help get the word out and monetize the game.
Through that company, “Duskfall” has had more than 67,000 downloads from people all over the world since it was published in November.
“The numbers really attest to how much publishing companies help,” Covey said.
Covey didn’t say how much money he’s made from the games, but said it’s enough to make the hours of time and effort he’s put into creating them worthwhile.
The best part, though, is knowing people are playing his game and enjoying it, he said.
“It’s pretty cool that a lot of kids at school play them, and people all over the world play them,” he said. “It’s really awesome.”
Learn how to play “Duskfall” —