RETOOLED Game – Dev Story and Insights


Inception of RETOOLED

RETOOLED was born out of frustration from the lack of FPS games that challenge traditional game design “rules”/norms. At the inception of RETOOLED the market mainly offered new games with slight variations or new imitations of previously established experiences. Games weren’t being made for a consumer like me, I wanted more from them.

RETOOLED is available now on Steam!

Swarm Creations – Solo Dev: Oliver Lagerblad

My name is Oliver Lagerblad and this is how my journey into game development started but first, here are a few things about me.

I haven’t worked in the industry prior to this project but always wanted too. My concept and art skills weren’t good enough to land me a spot in an education for game art. I tried studying game programming at a university but dropped out, it was too abstract for me at the time. I ended up with an education in real estate engineering, I calculated the energy consumption of buildings… but I felt a need for more creative work.

Two things I’ve in excess are willpower and stubbornness. If channeled and focused it can be a very good thing.

The start

My story isn’t unique, a lot of people have business ideas they want to execute but it can be quite a hurdle to just start. I want to offer a slight insight on the outlook when I started with RETOOLED.

I’ve been trading stocks since I was 19 with more or less all my savings. I’ve made and lost a sizable chunk of money for someone my age in Sweden. By the time I turned 28 (Nov 2018) however I had lost everything over a 6-month period. My net worth was 2 fairly cheap watches, an aging computer and whatever value the clothes in the closet was. I worked in the real estate industry until the summer of 2019. Economically it wasn’t the most optimal time to give game development a go.

2 weeks after that job ended I got a “boxing fracture” and dislocated several fingers from being robbed. It healed badly and required surgery the same summer. So lying in bed recovering and on strong painkillers I started writing the story for RETOOLED. Physically it wasn’t the most optimal time to give game development a go.

But mentally, my motivation couldn’t be higher, I was done doing work that I felt was only trading time for money. I naively thought it would take me 1-1,5 years to finish RETOOLED but here we are, almost 4 years later with a game greater than I envisioned it at the start. It has been high stakes with no safety net to keep this going. 


RETOOLED is a momentum based FPS that emphasizes quick thinking and strategy over twitch/reaction skills in high stakes FPS combat puzzles fought in race track like arenas.

There is an interplay between each action within RETOOLED with the goal of nudging the player into using the entire assortment of weapons, abilities and movement actions. Which is a necessity to master RETOOLED.

With a wide roster of enemies, each designed to play a role in pushing the player into the fun zone. With behaviors and player reactions meticulously designed to utilize the screen space and play space to its full extension, done to a level rarely seen within the indie scene. It has been monumental to get this right to set RETOOLED apart from its peers.

Coupled with each arena being controlled by one or multiple “Arena Master” systems that alter the spawn positions and AI sequences dependent on player action and position. With the intent of making you think and react in the moment no matter if you played it before.

With difficulty levels balanced with an “attack token” system and changes to AI behaviors I can retain the core gameplay DNA while changing the applied pressure on the player. Whereas traditionally high difficulty levels mainly inflates health and damage output of enemies which can highly alter the core gameplay from its initial design.

RETOOLED is meant to be challenging and is carefully crafted to give you a power trip and a sense of accomplishment once mastered.

RETOOLED is meant to be an alternative and a deviation of the modern DOOM franchise. I hope you give it a try and bunnyhop your way into the action!

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