POTSDAM More than 800 Apple tablet users have downloaded a new app for a physics-based game called Puzzletopple.
Trevor S. Dugan, a SUNY Potsdam graduate student from Madrid, spent the past year creating the game app that was just published in September on both the Apple App Store and Google Play.
The addictive 50-level puzzle game is similar to Snood, Tetris and Candy Crush with small colored boxes that collapse when selected.
The difference is, the game uses real physics.
Instead of blocks snapping into locations, they actually fall in a gravity and physics-based way, said Anthony K. Betrus, a professor in the business administration department at SUNY Potsdam. It requires a lot of math and takes a lot of computation power. Essentially, the devices havent been ready for this type of game up until now.
Mr. Dugans game idea started as a concept he wanted to use in a final project in a multi-media authoring and scripting graduate course taught by Mr. Betrus.
When I saw it I said it was something he should pursue, so I gave him a little nudge, he said.
Its the first time a SUNY Potsdam student has created and published a successful app, according to the SUNY Potsdam Graduate Office.
Mr. Dugan said that for every 99-cent download, he gets 69 cents.
On the day that Apple was reviewing it, they called me and the woman on the phone said she had been playing it the last two hours and got very behind on her work, he said.
The initial game took Mr. Dugan a semester to design, but with all the testing and changes that needed to be done, the app took about a year to launch.
Apples very picky, even down to your icon sizes, which have to be exact dimensions, Mr. Dugan said. It has to look like it belongs in their store. I went through several different icons.
Mr. Betrus said that after the concept stages, Mr. Dugan spent three months working on a prototype for the game which he used for the class. He then continued on the Alpha phase of his project for three months, when he added the final bells and whistles to his app. After the four-month Beta or debugging phase of his project, he was ready to bring his app to market, which was a two month process.
To keep track of how popular his game is, Mr. Dugan said he uses the iTunes Connect Mobile app that allows developers to see daily reviews.
At the end of the 50 levels hes developed for the game theres a trophy that no one has seen yet.
Mr. Dugan said hes currently working on the phone version of the app and a desktop version of the game.
Mr. Dugan, an educational technology specialist major whos in his last year of school, said hed like to continue in the field of computer graphics after graduation.
A launch party for Puzzletopple is being held on the third floor of Dunn Hall at SUNY Potsdam from 11:30 to 1:30 today.