Gameloft accused of poor working conditions

Written by David Hing

July 19, 2011 // 11:46 a.m.

Tags: #gameloft #ios #mobile-games #studio #studio-conditions #working-conditions

Former staff at mobile game developer Gameloft's New Zealand studio claim that they experienced poor working conditions, with staff being overworked to 'dangerous levels'. If true, the conditions would have violated New Zealand's health and safety laws.

Former studio head Glenn Watson told Games On Net that he worked between 100 and 120 hours during some weeks. 'Starting at 9:30am , going home at 2:30am, and then coming back into the office at 8:30am to start work again was not unusual,' he told the site.

Watson says he resigned after working four consecutive weeks of 14-hour days, including weekends. He also says that Gameloft asked him to apologise for burdening others with his work.

According to Watson, the developer's French headquarters would set false deadlines to induce crunch periods where some developers would end up working 24-hour shifts. The mobile studio, responsible for N.O.V.A, one of the initial first person shooters designed for iOS, and the Asphalt series, has not yet responded to the claims.

Poor working conditions in game studios regularly make the news. Watson says that the recent allegations levelled at Team Bondi by former employees was one of the inspirations for him to come forward.

Have you ever worked for a game developer and experienced poor working conditions? Let us know your thoughts in the forums.

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