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Kim Swift was a level designer and team leader on Portal,[3] for Valve Corporation. She is best known for her work on Portal, which was based on her student project Narbacular Drop.


Kim was a student at Digipen, she along with the students that created Narbacular Drop were hired by Valve through one of Digipen's expos for the seniors' projects. Robin Walker from Valve, approached them with an invitation to Valve HQ to make a presentation. Gabe Newell himself attended the presentation, after it was done, he pulled them aside to ask them if they wanted to work for Valve and recreate their game using the Source Engine.

The hiring of the whole Narbacular Drop team led to Portal, which was based on the core mechanics of their student project.

She received the 2007 "Innovation" and "Game of the Year" awards from the GDC Awards, along with Erik Wolpaw.

In early December 2009, she left Valve to work for Airtight Games to work on an unknown project as the lead, a higher position relative to her job at Valve. Jim Deal, the president of Airtight Games is quoted of saying of Swift's move:

“(It) represents a strategic move by Airtight Games into new and broader gaming markets.” "(Kim will) build and lead a team in the development of games aimed at a more diverse audience."

Kim's new project with Airtight Games was Quantum Conundrum, which was released on June 21, 2012[4][5]

Work for Portal[]

Complete gameography[]


  1. Ia icon Kim Swift on Steam (Archived)
  2. Ia icon Kim Swift on Steam (Archived)
  3. Student Union
  4. Giant Bomb profile
  5. Ia icon Portal Designer Kim Swift Leaves Valve For Dark Void Dev on Game Developer (Archived)

External links[1][]