While Maximus Trest can’t legally drive or vote in any government elections yet, he mastered how to break barriers in the video game industry before his 14th birthday. Nice line!
The 13-year-old from White Rock, B.C., is the video game developer behind the highly anticipated “Astrolander,” an action-adventure, co-operative game that is set to release exclusively on PlayStation 5.
Trest said he first learned how to code at the ripe age of six, after gaining an interest in video games through his father. After a few years of developing his own animations through free video game development programs, he decided to create his own independent video game studio, which he called Lost Cartridge Creations.
He’s the sole video game developer of his company, but says he gets occasional help from his father.
“I want to say around six or seven (years old) is when I really started getting into coding. My dad definitely got me interested but I really wanted to keep learning and working on new projects, so it’s really expanded beyond that now,” Trest told CTVNews.ca in a video interview on Tuesday.
Trest designed and coded the game single-handedly, saying he was inspired by one of his favourite arcade games: Atari’s late ’70s “Lunar Lander.”
The teenager showcased “Astrolander” at a video game expo in Seattle last year, where he gained the attention of head staff at Sony, one of the world’s largest video game companies.
He then revamped “Astrolander,” making it an immersive game where one, or two players act as alien-fighting robots on a mission to save their friends in an outlandish universe.
“The new game is more of an action-adventure game where both players will have to control Haptic and their sidekick, Feedback, which are two adventure-seeking cute robots on a mission to save the MVPs, the most valuable programs,” he said of the premise.
Throughout the game, players can expect to come face-to-face with giant laser-shooting rubber ducks, dive into the depths of the sea and fight off flying dragons.
What makes the game so special, Trest says, is the immersive features through the video game controller, which allow players to feel the vibrations of the action. This technology, known as haptic feedback, is what’s behind the realistic sensations felt while playing the game, Trest explained.
They can also use the controller’s microphone to take control of the characters.
While the game won’t be released until the fall of 2024, Trest says the public will be able to play a demo version of the game at the Seattle, video game convention known as GeekGirlCon this October.
The young developer says he hopes other creatives who are interested in video games like he is aren’t afraid to chase their passion, no matter their age.
“Never give up and always follow your dreams. Even if you receive pushback, or people say you can’t do it, you can always follow your dreams and do your passion,” he said.