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Gamers rescue a fluffy ‘Sewer Rat’
FLINT, Mich. – Baker College of Flint computer animation student Christian Matsoukis has created a digital game, “Sewer Rat,” and released it through the iTunes app store in early April. In the first seven weeks, Matsoukis’ free iOS app was downloaded more than 1,000 times to run his game on Apple iPhones, iPads and iPod touch. An ad-free version is also available.
The premise of his game is that the pipes in the sewer have burst, and the player must move bricks to clear a path so a rat can escape.
Because JS is recognized by many devices—smartphones, tablets and laptops—with web browsers that are not iOS-based, “Sewer Rat” can run on those, too. This saved Matsoukis many hours of programming to develop the apps, or applications, for “Sewer Rat” to run on those devices.
Matsoukis credits information garnered from classes at Baker College for the successful launch of his Internet game. He will graduate with an associate degree in computer animation on June 15.
“In addition to focusing on graphic design, I learned a lot about game theory and how games work from Steven Vincent, one of my instructors,” Matsoukis said.
Vincent, who has taught at Baker College for 26 years and is also an information technology manager for the State of Michigan, is not surprised by the success of Matsoukis’ game. “Christian has a talent for combining different concepts to make something new,” Vincent said. “I’m sure his future games will be successful, too.”
Matsoukis’ mother was also instrumental in helping him create the app. She was his go-to person for information about programming and one of two of the strongest reasons he’s attending Baker College. The other reason is his father. Both parents are Baker College graduates.
“I’m impressed by my parents’ success,” Matsoukis said. “It is also great to go to college close to home and save money that would have been spent on room and board,”
His mother, Christina Matsoukis, completed her third degree from Baker in 2004. She earned an associate and bachelor’s in graphic communications, and an associate in web design and programming. She is an independent contractor working primarily for ThyssenKrupp Materials NA as a senior web developer/UX designer.
His father, Marino Matsoukis, earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Baker in 2010, and is a loan originator for ELGA Credit Union.
Christian’s twin sister, Eden, is also attending classes at Baker College of Flint. She’s pursuing a degree in marketing.
Interest in programming
Through the experience of creating “Sewer Rat,” Matsoukis has learned that he has a strong interest in programming and will continue his education at Baker College Online to earn a bachelor’s degree in web development.
“It was amazing to program code for something that started as an idea,” said Matsoukis.
According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, in 2013, the mean annual wage for multimedia artists and animators exceeded $72,000. For web developers, it surpassed $67,500, and for software developers, specifically those who work on applications, it was more than $96,000.
With knowledge, talent and training in all of these fields, in addition to his work ethic, Matsoukis is on a promising path to workplace success.return
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All Baker Online undergraduate and graduate programs are accredited by the following regional institutional accreditor: The Higher Learning Commission, A Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, 30 North LaSalle Street, Suite 2400, Chicago, Illinois 60602-2504; (800) 621-7440; Web address: http://www.hlcommission.org. Baker College is an Academic Quality Improvement Program (AQIP) participant.
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