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Rockstar Games' crunch hours may not have been optional after all

Rockstar Games have officially responded to the 100-hour work week controversy, claiming that no employee was forced to work the longer hours. Some former employees voiced their opinion on the matter, stating something completely different.

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UCForce35d ago

“Sigh” I don’t want to say it. But this is similar Witcher 3 development which some former employees have worked there and they said it was nightmare. I know making quality game is important, but health come first. Also, some former employees complained about CEO and said he was awful. Rockstar Game and CD Project Red can make great game but terrible with their employees. Crunch time is going get people hurt in both physically and mentally. There has to be balance between work and health.

Jinger34d ago

That's why crunch time isn't all the time.

Skull52134d ago

There was a time in our history where you worked all daylight hours, 365 days a year because you’d die if you didn’t. Now apparently if you work more then a 40 hour work week it will be permanently damaging to your health, maybe even cause death. I wonder when things changed.

Gaming10134d ago

Skull, those people usually died in their 30's with very few teeth in their head. Let me guess, you consider sitting in your couch blogging from sun up to sun down to be the "work" that you think is so important.

Skull52134d ago

I bet they didn’t whine about it though

subtenko34d ago

did you buy witcher 3? arent you contributing to this if you did?

preciousdeath35d ago

I’m gonna bet this is very common for most AAA game devs. And if you have a problem with this, and you should, stop bitching when games are delayed.

xRacer74x35d ago

Its common in all development.

rainslacker34d ago (Edited 34d ago )

100 hour work weeks aren't common in the industry. Most crunch is maybe 60 hours, and not always as intrusive in one's life as some people seem to believe.

What is common is there always being some who say things are terrible, despite there really being no evidence to to support that beyond their word, and also not uncommon is people taking those people at their word because of confirmation bias.

A few former employees, who may have had a bad experience for whatever reason, is not always indication of the norm at the studio.

There hasn't been a single studio I've worked for, and have only ever heard of one that was really worse by first hand accounts where it was more venting than blame, have I heard of 100 hour work weeks, particularly for the entire, or bulk of the staff, because there really isn't a scenario where you need every person doing crunch time, and since crunch time is compensated, even among salaried employees most of the time, it can get very expensive to do on a regular and frequent basis. Which is why most devs are looking at ways to reduce crunch, but even with that, there are always people who are very dedicated to making things work right, and very passionate about the work they have their name on.

EazyC34d ago

If you were truly moral you'd boycott the game

xRacer74x35d ago

Welcome to deadlines. Anyone who has worked in programming knows how the final month or weeks go before your application is finished. The testers have it just as bad they have to test and agree that fixes were made correctly after the dev finishes his changes. The final push is always the hardest and most time consuming.

psuedo34d ago

It's not like it's a damn physical job. 15 minute breaks, getting up and moving around getting physically active ate what breaks consist of. Otherwise your what using a keyboard and a mouse. The job is mentally stressing/exhausting and breaks consist of being physically active and separating yourself from the task. The biggest factors are getting food, water, sleep, then physically active etc etc. Sure would prefer that rather than any other job. Whiiiiiin whine cryyyy cry.

LucasRuinedChildhood34d ago (Edited 34d ago )

You're whining out of jealousy that someone may have a better job than you, so they're not allowed criticize poor working conditions. "Whiiiiiin whine cryyyy cry". Corporations overworking their workers is not acceptable. You making excuses for this just makes you look like a fool.

deafdani34d ago

People have lives outside their offices, dude. It doesn't matter one bit if the work is physical or not; every extra hour you spend in the office is an hour you don't spend with your girlfriend, wife, kids, dogs, friends, or just alone at home happily scratching your balls watching some shit show in Netflix. Everyone has a right to work to live, not live to work.

Of course, it doesn't help at all that apparently the law in the U.S isn't really designed to seriously protect workers from abusive behaviors. Just look at the recent debacle regarding the layoffs from Telltale Games, where not a single one of the terminated employees received any kind of severance. That's fucked up and unthinkable in my country.

rainslacker34d ago

I've done physical labor, and now work as one of those keyboard jockies.

While I wouldn't say that physical labor is easy in any way, I found it more cathartic when you get into a rhythm and used to the physical demands.

But that mental stress you talk about isn't just gone when you take a 15 minute break. Even during that break, I find myself thinking about the task I'm taking a break from. hell, I'm almost 6 hours home from work, and while I type this, I am thinking about what I did today, what I need to overcome to finish up some tasks tomorrow, and even on what I completed and how I might be able to make it better.

After long stretches of working in a chair, without a break, i find myself sore through inactivity, pain in my back through tension from just sitting where I eventually forget my posture and the pain doesn't usually go away from moving around. My carpel tunnel can often become painful especially in the morning, and is worst when I first start playing a game with a controller where my hands will actually go numb so I have to stop, my eyes hurt from eye strain, and I can easily get headaches which don't go away with aspirin.

Now, I'm not saying that it's worse than physical labor, although I didn't find physical labor that bad overall. But I always have a laugh at the people who think that all office workers do all day is sit around in a chair, and are just mentally fatigued because they have to think. The worst I've gotten from physical labor is when I became complacent in paying attention to proper lifting techniques, and I strained my muscles too far. I do know people that ended up with long term muscle or joint problems because of this though, but the long term effects of both types of work can have serious implications on one's health. They're just different, although sometimes similar, but both potentially debilitating.

Potnoodle99934d ago

I fully agree 100% with everything you said. Both types can be damaging in both very similar and very different ways :/

jordan22290ps34d ago

It's a bit interesting that we as gamers seem mostly okay with this whether by saying its part of the business or that's what it takes to make a quality game and maybe just give rockstar and CD a slap on the wrist but then we freak out and try to get employees fired if they say something mean to fans online (ArenaNet fiasco)or boycott a game if there's content that's not strictly historically accurate(BFV). I mean only one of all those things is actually hurting anyone, and that's Rockstar and CD's staff and family from working like that. Of course this is assuming it's all true, but even if it's not, the feedback from gamers who took it as truth still stands. And I'm not trying to start anything, just figured I'd point it out bc it is interesting

ShadowWolf71234d ago (Edited 34d ago )

The ArenaNet fiasco was entirely her own doing, and she then proceeded to lie, openly and frequently, for weeks after.

The problem with Battlefield V is they claim to want to be respectful of history, and then kinda demonstrated the opposite. Had they just billed that as an alternate history story based on WWII a la Wolfenstein, I doubt they'd have gotten half the backlash they did.

jordan22290ps34d ago

Oh I'm not saying any of it is right or wrong. I'm just saying that gamers won't freak out about this as bad even though this is the only one actually hurting anybody. Reports keep coming in about shady work environments but as long as it's not shady business practices then nobody seems to care. And I'm no different as I already have my RDR2 preordered.

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