We’ve written so much about The Swindle that sometimes I forget that it’s not out yet and that I still somehow know very little about it. Stealth, cyberpunk, crime, infiltration. Good things. It’s in the same mould as Gunpoint and perhaps distantly related to Subversion. News from Size Five suggests that there may be a deeper connection to Introversion’s ill-fated infiltrator. Development is proving problematic, although not necessarily for the same reasons:
It’s a great game, but it’s a fucking complicated beast, and I’m simply not sure I can afford to make it the game it deserves to be right now…Nope, after a lot of metaphorical wrestling, it simply can’t be the game I’m going to make next.
There is a backup plan, although Dan doesn’t provide a great deal of information in the blog post:
So right now I’m in limbo. Kind of kicking around, poking at ideas with sticks. I’m prototyping some new stuff. Something that’s a bit more A-to-B than The Swindle, something a bit more story-based.
I’m pleased with the plot and the structure, and there are some really interesting and unique mechanics to it… It’s looking pretty good, and crucially it’s a much more manageable project.
Details soon, hopefully.
As for The Swindle, looking at it after finishing Gun Monkeys, Dan realised that ‘several elements’ didn’t work and that major rewrites were needed. To fix the problems and make the game that the concept deserves would be an expensive risk that could kill Size Five if the game didn’t turn out to be phenomenally successful. Best not to risk that.
Hopefully, with Gun Monkeys out in the wild and another project to fall back on, The Swindle can be allowed to percolate for a while and then attacked with fresh creative vigour. And a larger money net. Otherwise, we might find ourselves writing this headline again in a few months and that would be very sad indeed.