It often works like this. A football player looks for a career off the gridiron and ends up running a car dealership. Well, one player is currently using his off time to build a career making games.
Taylor Martinez made a name for himself quarterbacking the Big 10’s Nebraska Cornhuskers football team, but he’s now trying to establish a name for his game studio, Magic 3 Apps. Under Martinez’s leadership, the developer is working on its latest creation. Stupid Fast is a football-themed endless-running app, and Martinez is the mastermind responsible for it. He came up with the concept about a month ago, and he’s already gearing up to release it within the next few weeks.
In the game, you take control of a stick-figure football player, and you must tap on the run button to go as fast as possible while also jumping over obstacles. To keep the tension high, a defensive player is chasing after you and ready to knock your character out.
We reached out to Martinez to ask him more about his creation and about what is drawing him to game design. This isn’t his first time making something for the mobile devices, but it’s potentially his biggest game yet.
“I played down at Nebraska, and a lot of people kept contacting me on Twitter, and my friends and family kept text messaging me and emailing me because they all knew I had created a few apps already,” Martinez told GamesBeat. “I finally just decided to create this football app called Stupid Fast.”
The former Cornhusker says his creation is similar to Temple Run, but it’s from a 2D side-scrolling perspective. It’s also different in another very key way: You can win real-world prizes.
“I don’t know if a lot of people have done this, but [Stupid Fast has] a reward system,” said Martinez. “Let’s say you [finish with 36 points], you might win Madden NFL 15, or let’s say you land on 75, you could win a GoPro camera.”
These are real rewards that Magic 3 Apps will send out to you. The gridiron star says he is already working on solidifying deals with partner companies to provide the physical rewards. He says he is in talks with health-supplement company GNC as well as the hunting and fishing retailer Cabela’s to bring their products to the game’s prize system.
“It’s a great way for companies to advertise their products,” he said.
While a free GoPro might bring players into game Stupid Fast, it won’t generate any cash for Martinez. Instead, the developer intends to generate revenue with advertising and in-app purchases. Those might include extra life for players who want to keep on going after they die in the game.
Martinez has made games and apps before. In college, he designed a Simon-like game called Follow-The-Pattern that had players trying to remember long combinations of colors and sounds in a test of memory.
“I fell in love with creating apps,” said Martinez. “It’s fun, and it’s cool to see people playing your apps. Just the little things like that take my mind off of stuff.”
Now, while Martinez is in charge of Magic 3 Apps, he isn’t a coder. Him and his brother Keaton Martinez come with the ideas, design the games, and the outsource the coding.
Finally, we asked if Martinez looks around at games like Flappy Bird and thinks that he could do the same.
“I’ve actually talked to Flappy Bird developer Dong Nguyen, and we emailed a few times back and forth,” said Martinez. “I would love to have a game like Flappy Bird. It’s an awesome idea. It’s great and addictive.