KO_OP is a Canadian artist-run game studio cooperative based in Montreal.

IndustryVideo games
FoundedApril 1, 2012; 9 years ago (2012-04-01)
FoundersSaleem Dabbous
Bronson Zgeb
Goodbye Volcano High


Studio director Saleem Dabbous and programmer Bronson Zgeb founded KO_OP in 2012 to make "visually arresting avant-garde games".[1] The studio is run as a workers cooperative with equal salary and decision-making between co-owners.[2][3] Dabbous and Zgeb used personal savings to launch the company and relied on work-for-hire to finance its own games. They struggled with inexperience in their over-scoped early projects, as they moved through a dozen prototypes and eventually cancelled two projects in full production.[1]

Gnog was nominated for Excellence in Visual Art at the 2016 Independent Games Festival[4] and released in 2017.[5] KO_OP also built "The Mirror of Spirits", an expansion for Lara Croft Go, in 2016.[6]

KO_OP is currently developing a narrative-driven adventure game titled Goodbye Volcano High, which is scheduled for a 2022 release on the PlayStation 5,[7] PlayStation 4 and Steam.


  1. ^ a b Sinclair, Brendan (October 18, 2016). "Inexperience as an advantage". GamesIndustry.biz. Retrieved January 12, 2020.
  2. ^ McAloon, Alissa (March 12, 2019). "The 'equal pay and equal say' structure of the game dev studio KO_OP". Gamasutra. Retrieved January 12, 2020.
  3. ^ Klepek, Patrick (March 12, 2019). "Giving Workers Equal Power Isn't Radical. This Studio's Done It For Years". Vice. Retrieved January 12, 2020.
  4. ^ Cameron, Phill (February 10, 2016). "Road to the IGF: KO_OP's GNOG". Gamasutra. Retrieved January 12, 2020.
  5. ^ Couture, Joel (August 9, 2018). "Building the monstrous transforming puzzle heads of GNOG". Gamasutra. Retrieved January 12, 2020.
  6. ^ Priestman, Chris (December 21, 2016). "The independent studio behind some of Lara Croft GO's best levels". Kill Screen. Retrieved January 12, 2020.
  7. ^ Huerta, Marcela. "Goodbye Volcano High, an end-of-era love story, is coming to PS5". PlayStation Blog. Retrieved June 11, 2020.

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