Walker Sheets, a 19-year-old Noblesville resident, has played video games for virtually his entire life. His passion for gaming inspired him to create a new video game, Mysterious Mystery, that will be released later this year on the PC platform Stream, and possibly others.
Sheets said he can’t disclose the name of the software company he signed with until March.
“I think the difference between me and someone (else), like the person who executes it versus the one that just has the idea, I just kept having fun with it,” Sheets said. “I kept enjoying what I was doing, and I could spend long hours on something and then not feel like any time passed.”
Mysterious Mystery involves two detectives who solve mysteries. They investigate crime scenes, compete against rivals and talk to witnesses, among other tasks.
Sheets, a Hamilton Southeastern High School graduate, initially created a smaller version of Mysterious Mystery for himself and friends. He said he wasn’t planning on making Mysterious Mystery a full game but he eventually did.
“Eventually, people played it, and they kept jokingly telling me, ‘When’s the sequel coming out?’” Sheets said. “And this was around right when I was going to graduate and I decided, I was like, ‘You know what? Maybe this is the game I’ll try to make as a full game because this is easier to make, I enjoy doing it and people really like it.’”
To make the game bigger, Sheets said he needed to sign with a company to have the budget and time to work on it full time. He vividly recalls the day the company he signed with contacted him.
“I remember falling onto my knees, like, ‘Oh, my gosh, it actually happened. What I’ve been working on for (the) past six months is really happening. It’s real,’” Sheets said.
Sheets consulted with friends, family and people online to be voice actors and create music for the game. He said authoring a storyline for a mystery game made him rely on his writing skills and he said he had to guess what players could figure out on their own.
Sheets’ mother, Kelly Hollingsworth, said she and Sheets’ stepfather, Ryan Hollingsworth, were “never going to stop someone from trying to live a dream,” but wanted Sheets to develop an alternate career plan if creating video games didn’t succeed.
However, Hollingsworth said she never doubted that her son would succeed.
“We’re so proud. We were not shocked at all,” Hollingsworth said. “He taught himself Japanese up in his room, never took a class. So, when you got that kind of dedication, he’ll succeed somewhere.”
Sheets wants to create video games as his career. He currently has no plans to attend college as he pursues his dream.
Mysterious Mystery will be presented in two episodes. Players will be able to purchase the episodes separately or a complete version with added content. The first episode is scheduled to come out in late June. The complete version is scheduled to come out in December.
Walker Sheets’ favorite thing about playing video games is making decisions as his character.
For example, in a horror movie, Sheets said the movie decides what happens, not the audience. However, in a game, the player makes the decisions.
Sheets’ favorite type of games are role-playing games, which usually have multiple levels, a character going on quests and are “more adventure-esque,” he said.