Inside Introversion: A Documentary

Tell us about Subversion, already. drop us a line to inform me that the fifteen-minute documentary they put together about the Introversion story is now online. While well-made, to be honest, there’s little here which anyone who’s followed Introversion won’t already know. It doesn’t really touch on major lows like the Darwinia’s protracted development or highs like their IGF fuck-publishers victory speech, but is a charming recapitulation of their history and you do get a sense of what all the Introversion folk are actually like, as well as what motivates them. I’m (er) also in it as an occasional brief talking head, desperately trying to not speak at eight-million-miles-an-hour and wave my hands all over the place. The guitar propped up in the background isn’t mine, by the way. Go see it here.


  1. cliffski says:

    First impressions:
    OMG I feel so fucking working class after listening to these accents. And Kieron, you look soooo like a music producer.
    I love stuff like this.

  2. dartt says:

    A lovely story but sadly no new information about the mysterious subversion!

    Can you use your position as the original critcal talent scout to prise any juicy details from them?

  3. Kieron Gillen says:

    Chris is impressively closed lipped.


  4. Ben Hazell says:

    I feel sad that the Blonde lady didn’t make the team photo.

  5. Jon says:

    That just made me go and buy uplink, I need it back in my life.

  6. Nuyan says:

    Fun story. Really should start playing Darwinia and Uplink.

    I’ve been wondering about one thing. I assume most of their sales on steam, that really must have helped them out enormously. But how much does Valve get of that? And of other published games there?

  7. THX-1138 says:

    Interesting video. I enjoy the games they’ve made so far, (especially Defcon) but seeing this video has made me more aware of the talent that went into making them.

    I’m just sad that there are’nt more like them.

  8. Kieron Gillen says:

    Nuyan: The percentage hasn’t been revealed publicly as far as I’m aware. From what I’m told, it’s a better split than traditional channels. Seeing what other online channels charge, I honestly wouldn’t be surprised if it was as high as 50:50.


  9. Jon says:

    I’m attempting to buy it from the introversion site as I assumed they’d be getting more that way…

    Having said that I’m having problems paying so I might have to resort to using steam.

  10. THX-1138 says:

    Well, 50% of the money Garry makes from GMod goes to Valve so it probably is the same.

    link to

  11. Kieron Gillen says:

    Ah! Missed that. Probably is then.

    In short: More money goes to a dev if you buy direct, always.


  12. Pace says:

    GMod uses Source though, I’d have thought that would up Valve’s cut quite a bit. (I mean, Garry had no other legal way to sell the game.)

  13. garry says:

    When I was shopping Facewound it was 60/40 in developers favour. But I think it’s probably different strokes for different folks.

  14. Kieron Gillen says:

    Garry: Yeah. I suspect, like most deals, it’ll depend on who’s making the deal.

    EDIT: Er… I’m stating the obvious here. Just trying to say “Publisher takes a considerable cut”. Go with wot garry sez.


  15. Nuyan says:

    I hope that Valve at least takes a bigger cut off on Rockstar games on steam than on the indie games.

  16. Jon says:

    My housemate walked past as I was playing Uplink.

    She looked worried and asked me what the hell I was doing, she wouldn’t believe it was only a game for a good 5 mins…

  17. Doug says:

    I think I read a quote from Introversion somewhere that they made more sales off of Steam in a month than they had off of their own site in a year. So even if Valve is taking a cut, Introversion is still gaining more exposure. Of course, now that I can’t find that quote maybe it’s so much hyperbole.

    Between Steam and Ambrosia’s Mac ports, I think they may be doing OK.

  18. JakethePirate says:

    The Darwinia music gives shivers.

    What always surprises me most about Introversion is how much the seem to get how it all works more than anybody else. I often find my self thinking about something from a recent game that I think is a new and interesting concept and then I realize that Introversion has already advanced that concept beyond wherever I think it might go. They seem, to me at least, years ahead of anyone else in terms of theory and understanding.

  19. kadayi says:

    50% might sound like a hell of a cut by Valve, but it’s a far better return than you’d get on a retail sale by a publisher like EA or Activision, plus Valve are covering the download bandwidth side of things ad infinitum IIRC. I’m pretty sure Introversion got a sweet deal from Valve at the time, because Gabe was nuts for Darwinia as well.

  20. Arathain says:

    I think in traditional retail the developer gets less than 10% by the time the whole thing pans out. Makes online distribution a far more favourable set-up for those making the games.

  21. Kieron Gillen says:

    Doug: That wasn’t of all their games – that was of Darwinia. Without a doubt, the exposure on Steam helped keep Introversion solvent.


  22. kadayi says:

    The only thing that nagged at me after watching it was it seemed like Chris does all the coding & comes up with the ideas, which makes me wonder what the rest of them contribute to the games tbh.

  23. Kast says:

    link to

    All your questions are answered! The actual developers are Chris, Gary and Leander. Also, John codes for mac and linux.

  24. James T says:

    The Darwinia music gives shivers.

    It’s by a Mr Trash80; you can have a dig around his site here for more. I particularly like ‘Saturn’s Children’, ‘Mawwaa’, ‘Schroeder’s Failure’ (which I don’t recall hearing in-game, but which is apparently from Darwinia), ‘The Pancake Song’… He’s got a few goodies up there.

  25. mr_anonymous says:

    Kast: It should also be noted that Mike Blaugazuski (or however you spell his name) of Ambrosia fame has done a great deal of work to get the Mac version of DEFCON running, and is working hard on Multiwinia.

  26. Cargo Cult says:

    The Darwinia title track. For added verisimilitude, it should be played through a real live Atari ST.

    Fear the thunderous beepyness!

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