In recent years, video games industry has been plagued by reports of poor working conditions, marked by crunch and toxic environments. Crunch, specifically, is a widely debated issue because several studio managers have argued that periods of crunch are sometimes necessary, drawing the ire of those who continue to point out the adverse effects of such a mindset.
Amidst the ongoing debate came a breath of fresh air when several Insomniac Games developers took to Twitter to reveal that the critically-acclaimed Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart was made without crunch.
The conversation was sparked by a tweet from game designer Grant Parker, who wrote:
I’d appreciate people sharing this positive. Because it’s important.
Ratchet PS5 is at 89 average score and I can’t speak for anyone on the team but myself, but I didn’t crunch once. 40h weeks the whole time.
It is possible to work on a great game without suffering.
Animator Lindsay Thompson claimed that she, too, didn’t crunch even once. She added that mental wellbeing impacts creativity.
Another developer, Jeff Weidner, chimed in to say that any extra hours he worked were purely his choice. Insomniac Games’ management didn’t mandate crunch or overtime.
“I worked hard but never was compelled to crunch,” Weidner tweeted. “If I put in extra hours, it was my choice because I had something I was really excited about and wanted it to look STELLAR. But I was actively encouraged by my leads and management to keep my life in balance. And I did!”
I’d appreciate ppl sharing this positive. Because it’s important.#RatchetPS5 is at 89 avg score & I can’t speak for anyone on the team but myself, but I didn’t crunch once. 40h weeks the whole time.
It is possible to work on a great game w/o suffering.https://t.co/8GOzukf2sh
— Grant Parker (@GrantPDesign) June 8, 2021
Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart received universal critical acclaim. The game will release on Friday, June 11th.
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