Ryse “Crunch” Tweet Backfires In The Worst Way Possible
“Crunch Time” is a term no developer in the industry is unfamiliar with. It encompasses those last few months on a game’s timeline, where nights become long and work hours become stretched. It’s a bit of a touchy subject in terms of fairness to employees, but that didn’t stop Ryse developers Crytek from taking pride in the fact that they are providing food for their
Taking to Twitter last night, the developers of the Xbox One launch title decided to share some food facts around the game’s development, boasting about the number of dinners the are providing to employees currently stuck in the “crunch”.
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By the time #Ryse ships for #XboxOne, we will have served the crunching team more than 11,500 dinners throughout development. #RyseFacts
Now it doesn’t take a genius to tell you that this is already a bad idea. Although crunch time is often a staple of the gaming industry, and most other markets for that matter, the fact remains that it’s seen as an unfair and gruelling time for developers, sometimes leading to destroyed relationships and horrible working hours all in the pursuit of getting a game ready for launch. Some studios do it right, and almost stretch the “crunch” out over a year, but others, like Crytek it seems, keep it for the last month or two. And Twitter made sure to let them understand their mistake.
In a cruel twist of fate (well, depending on how you look at it), Twitter users took the hashtag used by Crytek and turned it into a sarcastic tag for Tweets that disagreed with this business practice. Just look at some of the replies the studio received quickly after posting:
The divorce of my parents eventually led me to a life of crime but, man, that launch game was REALLY polished.
#RyseFacts Facilitate the subjugation of countless peoples and the rise of Western European genocide, imperialism, and slavery.
You have to perform a QTE to eat dinner during crunch.
#RyseFacts: Devs say that when #Ryse ships it will be like watching a baby be born, which they missed because they were crunching on #Ryse
#RyseFacts Stockholm syndrome can take many fun forms, like being proud of working 120 hours a week on QTE sequences.P
#RyseFacts – devs love #Ryse more than their families but not quite as much as pizza. Who will you abandon for #Ryse when you play it?
#RyseFacts Help I’m trapped inside a game dev factory. Have not seen sun in 3 months. Send rescue. Miss loved ones. Sarah, I’m sorry.
#RyseFacts It’s not worth sacrificing your personal life to ship a launch game. You should take time each day to appreciate your loved ones!
AAA Game Development: Where dinner is served with a side of exploitation. #Ryse#RyseFactsP
I really hope #RyseFacts is a passive aggressive attempt by the @RyseGame production team to tell management to fuck off.
@RyseGame oh wow, I love dinner! Any tips on how to get into the games industry? #cool#dinnerP
@RyseGame That is disgusting. A well-managed studio wouldn’t need to be crunching in the first place. Do not take pride in this fact.
Great to see our overtime as a marketing achievement. Disgusting. #RyseFacts
Ryse wasn’t crunched in a day #Rysefacts
I personally find myself agreeing with the scores that disagree with this business practice. It’s periods like this that cast a really, really bad light on AAA development as a while, and most of those horror stories you hear from the industry come from work periods such as these.
Sadly though, I don’t think it’s going away anytime soon. What are your thoughts on this though? Is this just something that comes with the turf, or is it a practice that hurts the industry more than it helps?