Contest Staff

Contest Guides

A contest guide helps contestants in the learning sessions figure out how to use Game Maker to create the game they’ve designed.  We don’t use the term instructor, because the contestants are driving themselves to learn, rather than passively listening to an instructor.

The primary guide for the current contest is Jay Shaffstall, Assistant Professor of Computer Science at Muskingum University.  Jay is a huge fan of creating games to explore creativity and problem solving, and this contest is a way for him to share that process with others.

Also helping contestants during the Saturday learning sessions is Lance Hecker, a past GamesByTeens winner and current Computer Science professional working at Cerner.

Contest Judges

The games will be judged according to several criteria, including the visual look of the game, the sophistication of the programming, and how fun it is to play.  Our judges are drawn from around the area, and also from volunteers who work in the video game industry.  This year our professional judges include:

Renko van den Hout
Producer at SOEDESCO Publishing
Hi, I’m one of the producers at SOEDESCO and fanatic board game enthousiast. My work revolves around getting full-fledged games on the market and supporting indie game developers with what they need for their game. We also advice and support with languages, age ratings and design challenges during the project. I’ll be happy to take a look at your projects and hope to have a fun time playing them!

Elina Huisman
Junior Producer at SOEDESCO Publishing
I help game developers with their day-to-day tasks and have projects of my own, in which I help a development team to bring their game to market. This includes age ratings and game testing for a good working and enjoyable published game.

Anne Wijning
Programmer at SOEDESCO Studios
At SOEDESCO Studios, we bring existing games to Playstation, Xbox, and Nintendo Switch. This means we meticulously go through projects to streamline them, and make sure they pass strict quality guidelines. We also make sure the console hardware is used optimally, by adding features like 4K resolution support where possible.