Recent accusations about terrible working conditions at Team Bondi aren’t being taken lightly, and the IGDA is going to look into them.
It’s kind of an accepted fact that working in the videogame industry means long hours, especially when a game is in crunch mode and deadlines are looming, but apparently things are really brutal over at Team Bondi (the developer behind L.A. Noire). How brutal, you ask? Brutal enough that the International Game Developers Association is investing reports of awful conditions at the studio.
Earlier this week, various outlets began reporting on a number of reports that had been surfacing from insiders at the studio. Accordingly, a huge number of damning reports were leveled against studio boss Brendan McNamara:
Brendan McNamara is accused by one of eleven anonymous insiders as “the angriest person I’ve ever met”.
“It’s one thing for him to be angry behind closed doors, but it was incredibly common for him to scream at whoever was pissing him off in the middle of the office,” the person claimed.
Other accounts of life at the Sydney studio say McNamara was “required to sit isolated from everyone else” following a visit from a team-building company.
“But that just made it worse, since he would then pace back and forth all day, bothering people even more,” said another anonymous studio source.
On top of this, it was also reported that lengthy crunch times involving incredibly long days (110-hour work weeks were apparently common) at the studio without overtime pay. Needless to say, the IGDA isn’t happy to hear about any of this.
IGDA chair Brian Robbins, speaking to Develop, said that the organization is looking into the claims and would also like to hear from any studio employees who were affected by the conditions: “Certainly reports of 12-hour a day, lengthy crunch time, if true, are absolutely unacceptable and harmful to the individuals involved, the final product, and the industry as a whole.”
McNamara himself reportedly offered no denial or apology when he was confronted with the laundry list of accusations against him and his studio, which doesn’t make him look too good in the eyes of the public.
Meanwhile, anyone who was affected by the conditions at Team Bondi can contact the IGDA via email at [email protected].