We’re getting international! Connor left the United States to join our merry band (and to be with his girlfriend who is studying in Stuttgart). We’re very happy to have him here, not only because he is the first Carrot to have worked at SpaceX! Quite impressive, right? He’s got many more interesting details to share, so take your time and enjoy his interview.
Who are you and what do you do at Chasing Carrots?
Ello! I’m Connor and I am working on the programming side of things here at Chasing Carrots.
Where are you from?
I am from the US originally. I moved over to Germany right after I finished up college in the greater Seattle area.
What is the best about being a game developer?
It’s really hard and it’s very rewarding. A lot of people are very passionate about games and because of that, they are willing to go to some pretty extreme lengths to create some impressive technology and content. Currently, my favorite part about making games is delving into the technology behind them. My favorite subjects related to game development are graphics and audio programming. Basically all the sensory output stuff.
How and why did you become a game developer?
Back when I was 12 / 13 years old, I was very passionate about a game called ModNationRacers on the PS3. It was a kart racing game, but you could make your own tracks, karts, and characters. I got really into making tracks and I eventually got good enough at making tracks that a few of them were included in Hot Lap. Hot Lap was a part of the game everyone in the world would compete to get the fastest time on your track for a full 24 hour day. This game sold me on the idea of creating games for a living and from that point on games became my main focus and passion. Right after finishing high school in the US, I moved to Seattle to attend DigiPen to learn how to make games.
What did you do before Chasing Carrots?
I was a BSCS RTIS (a long acronym that really just means game engine programmer) at DigiPen: Institute of Technology in Redmond, Washington, USA. While I was a student there, I also did an internship at SpaceX where I worked on satellite software for a few months.
What kind of games do you like?
I love difficult competitive games. It’s a bit weird, but I love it when a game has a huge skill gap and is generally pretty punishing to players that are completely new to the game. For me, these kinds of games are the perfect playground for me to sink time into to get really good at them and eventually end up being one of the veteran players rather than one of the new players. The feeling of showing off those skills is pretty exciting as well. The first game I did this with was Tribes: Ascend and I have now been doing the same thing with Rocket League for the last 3 years. I enjoy a lot of genres besides this though. RTS, RPG, etc.
What was your first gaming experience?
Around 8 or 9 years old, my older brother introduced me to my first games. I had probably played things before them, but Roller Coaster Tycoon and Starcraft were the games my bro showed me that I fell in love with. I have been a hardcore gamer ever since.
What are your all-time favorite games?
Hmm. All-favorites in the order of time I played them. Roller Coaster Tycoon, Starcraft, Modnation Racers, Sins of a Solar Empire, Tribes: Ascend, Quake, Rocket League.
Who or what is your favorite band/music?
Have you heard of Vulfpeck? You should listen to Vulfpeck. Just remember that I told you to listen to Vulfpeck. Everyone who knows Vulfpeck remembers who showed them the beauty that is Vulfpeck. I am listening to Vulfpeck /// Outro as I write this.
What’s your craziest hobby?
I am very passionate about competitive video games. Before developing games, I played competitive games so much that I was working on becoming a professional player. Even as I moved into developing games, I continued to do this. It’s so much fun becoming a member of one of these communities because you will meet people that are willing to put in thousands of hours just to master simple mechanics in a game. This, of course, results in the extremely impressive gameplay that these players can pull off.
Oh! I also like math a lot. My favorite formula is the Discrete Fourier Transform. It’s pretty cool. It acts as a convenient way to turn any discrete signal into a summation of sinusoidal functions. It’s one of those things that you learn about and then you realize it’s used everywhere.
What would you say, is your nerdiest apparel?
I am not much of a fashion person. I have a Google shirt and a SpaceX shirt. I had a Tribes: Ascend shirt that was supposed to be a jersey for competitive matches that I made when I was playing the game. I think the nerdiest part of my clothes is that I use data structures to decide which clothes I am going to wear on any given day. My pants, shirts, and undies are stored in 3 separate queues and my socks are stored in a heap.
If you could be a game character, you would be…?
Uh. Probably a light Blood Eagle from Tribes. Maybe one of the eggs that sit in the crowds in Rocket League. (^^