Basil Okpara Jr., a 9 year-old from Nigeria’s commercial capital, Lagos, has built more than 30 mobile games since he started coding from the age of 7. The 9-year-old is currently …
Basil Okpara Jr., a 9 year-old from Nigeria’s commercial capital, Lagos, has built more than 30 mobile games since he started coding from the age of 7.
The 9-year-old is currently building a hide and seek game, using a free programming application called Scratch 2.
Scratch 2 allows users to create games, animations, and stories online or offline. So far Basil has used it to generate more than 30 mobile games.
“I learned how to build games at a boot camp. Now, I build to keep me busy when I am bored,” Basil told CNN.
In March, his father signed him up for a five-day boot camp for children aged 5 to 15.
The camp, organized by Codefest International, was put in place to expose Nigerian children to emerging technologies like robotics and virtual reality.
His father recalled how when he recognised his passion for games, he bought him a tablet at the age of four. The younger Basil would reportedly snatch away phones and spend his time tapping away on Candy Crush and Temple Run.
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The turning point for Basil came at the age of seven when he father scolded him for spending so much time on playing rather than making the games.
“Out of annoyance, I said to him, ‘you are always playing games, can’t you think about building your own games so others can play yours too?’. I was angry when I said it, and I did not know he took it seriously,” he added in his CNN interview.
The words from his father sparked active interest to become a developer. The active interest led to his parents getting him a laptop and signing him up for courses for basic game development.
Basil, who wants to be a scientist in the future, titles his games based on what they are about.
The games are still in their raw form and can currently only be accessed on computers that have Scratch 2 installed.
But according to his father one of them, titled Frog attack, will be available to the public on Google play store in August.