Jordan Casey is one of the world’s top under-13 game developers. Earlier this year, he exploded onto the scene as the youngest iOS game developer in Europe with the launch of Alien Ball Vs Humans on the App Store. Taking a break from working on his latest titles, he had time for a quick interview.
Hey Jordan, when did you start working on games?
I started developing games at the age of 10, when I shut down my first website I thought I could work on some new coding projects and I thought: Games. I started developing in Flash and then moved to iOS when I was 12.
What originally got you interested in game development and how did you begin?
Originally it was watching people play games like Club Penguin and writing blogs about it and I thought if I did this people would write blogs about mine too. So, my first game was a virtual world like Club Penguin, a few people liked it. After multiplayer games I went to single player and a lot more people preferred them.
Of all the game frameworks you’ve used (like Gamesalad etc.) which is your favourite and why?
My favourite framework would have to be Flash, the graphical user interface is just amazing and Actionscript is my favourite language. The best thing about Flash is Air, meaning I can write a game in Actionscript once, and publish it to Mac, PC, iOS and Android without writing the game again in a different language.
Do you think more people your age are going to start writing their own games?
I think so, because CoderDojo is becoming a massive thing and more kids are learning to code. I think that’s really cool because if more and more Irish kids will be coding that means in the future, Ireland could be the leading country in technology, hopefully generating more companies and jobs.
Do you think in three years time that you’ll be playing more games created by people your age or by big publishers like Zynga/EA/etc?
Well, I think a bit of both, I don’t really like big publisher games, but I do like indie games by adults. I love seeing what kids at my CoderDojo demo and their games are always really fun, but I love playing Minecraft, Super Meat Boy and Fez.
What is the coolest piece of technology or software that you see right now?
I think the coolest piece of technology in my opinion at the moment is Google’s Project Glass. I think it’s amazing the way you can send emails, update your status and record video just by wearing a pair of glasses.I also really like the new Microsoft Surface. I don’t really think Microsoft hardware is all that “pretty” or that the hardware is well “designed” but Microsoft are really coming into the game, I love my Nokia Lumia and the Surface in my opinion, could be a massive competitor with the iPad.
What do your friends think about you being a game developer?
My friends think it’s pretty cool, seeing me on TV and stuff. A few of my friends think I’m sort of ‘computer geek’ but then a couple of friends also go to CoderDojo so they think it’s really impressive and they really want to make games also.
Who has been your inspiration in creating games?
My inspiration has to be Markus Persson (Notch) who created Minecraft on his own. He showed me that you didn’t have to be part of a big company to make a successful game.
You can follow Jordan on Twitter here.