Defold started with Ragnar and Christian talking about game creation at Avalanche – the AAA game company where they both worked.
They were both highly impressed with the team behind the game God of War, who created a great game with only 7 programmers. About 60 programmers worked on typical AAA games at the time. The game God of War was a 1.5 MB executable with only 25 programmer bugs. Compare that to the industry norm of around 40 MB executables and 1000 bugs.
God of War made them realise that their work was State of Industry and not State of Art.
One late night when they were discussing this Christian suddenly said ”I’m making a game engine at home” and Ragnar replied with ”Actually, me too!”. They realised that they should do this together instead of individually, and from there Defold was born.
Defold was developed as a side-project for some time before being turned into a business. Ragnar and Christian left their jobs at Avalanche and started working full time on Defold.
Defold started a partnership with King in 2013 and made a couple of King games in Defold to prove that it worked for the type of games that King makes. That partnership resulted with King acquiring Defold in 2014. Defold was developed and used internally at King for a few years before the decision was made to make Defold available to developers outside of King. The announcement and release of Defold as a free to use tool was made at the Game Developers Conference in San Fancisco in 2016.