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Portal creator debunks structureless Valve heirarchy

Thursday, 17th May 2012 08:33 GMT By Johnny Cullen

Portal creator Kim Swift has said Valve does indeed have a hierarchy of sorts in contrary to the free-flowing company that was painted out in the recently published company employee handbook.

Swift, now at Airtight Games and working on Quantum Conundrum for Square Enix, told Eurogamer it was a more free-flowing developer than most places, however.

“I guess for me, Valve as a company definitely has a lot more freedom for developers working there than a lot of other companies,” she said.

“But I disagree with the suggestion that they have no structure there. They do actually. They have management, there’s the board of directors of the company, there’s Gabe Newell. Those guys at the top of the company definitely have opinions on how things should be run.

“You can choose the project you want to work on but there are definitely people behind the scenes making decisions for the company. To me, that’s normal. If it was a company where there was no structure at all I think things would run completely amok.”

Swift added her role at Airtight is a “little more relaxed” than that when she was at Valve creating Portal.

“I definitely feel at home here. One of the reasons I left Valve was that I wanted to see what else was out there and see if there might be a better fit for me personality-wise and I’ve really found it here.”

Swift said her departure from Valve, however, was a amicable one, adding she “didn’t leave under any animosity”.

Quantum Conundrum is set to launch later this year for PSN, XBL and PC.

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3 Comments

  1. TheBlackHole

    I don’t think anyone really believed there was no management structure at Valve, did they?

    #1 3 years ago
  2. mad1723

    Well, you had to assume there was some kind of really basic structure to avoid the collapse of it all :)

    #2 3 years ago
  3. freedoms_stain

    I was under the presumption that the “structureless” part referred to projects and not the entire company as a whole.

    #3 3 years ago

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