In a huge and interesting feature on Kotaku, Jason Schreier has provided a deeper look into the crunch and toxic work evironment allegations moved to Rockstar Games ahead of the Red Dead Redemption 2 launch.
As you can read in the feature, Schreier has talked to many employees who have had negative experiences, not only in terms of how many hours they spend or spent at work but also for what matters the mood at the varios offices around the world.
Rockstar Games head of publishing Jennifer Kolbe has shared a statement with the website, claiming that many of the things that have popped up on the Internet about the theme are “individual anecdotes.”
The “averages for Red Dead only would not be meaningfully different” from the usual work times (“From January through March 2018, according to those statistics, Rockstar employees worked an average of 42.4 hours. From April through June, they hit 45.5 hours. And from July through September, 45.8 hours.”)
“However, the explanation for the discrepancy between the cross-company data and the individual anecdotes is just that: you are hearing individual anecdotes which are usually self-selecting both for the most extreme ends of the scale as well as for people who clearly have issues with our process,” she said.
“There are absolutely people who, at various times, worked really long hours. There are also individuals who are exaggerating what their actual hours were.
(…) We have confirmed their self-reported numbers at the time as substantially lower from what they recall having done in their online postings, and we have offered to share the evidence of that with you if given permission from those people,” Kolbe added.