The production of big-name, high-budget games increasingly relies on outsourcing (or “external development,” if you prefer) for the creation of 3D art, level design, and other game assets. Michael Thomsen visited one of the firms that provides this work, the Shanghai-headquartered Virtuos Ltd. Thomsen draws out the tension between the demand for such work and the possibility for exploitation it creates, as well as the role that changing profit margins in the video game industry play in exacerbating that tension.