Life’s never easy for a developer in a studio like Rockstar Games.
New gameplay modules are constantly under development and there are timelines to meet all the time. This kind of work culture is known to the employees and is fully acknowledged by the management as well. This could be changing now if the latest Kotaku report is to be believed. Kotaku is a website dedicated to the gaming industry and carries reviews and tips on video games. Its report now on the working atmosphere inside Rockstar is a follow up on its earlier report in 2008.
Changes in the Top Management at Rockstar
Kotaku claims that the studio has initiated steps to replace the top personnel in the company. The most high-profile exit was Dan Houser who was not only involved in the development of Grand Theft Auto but also a co-founder at Rockstar. Besides him, the company has replaced two more senior executives heading their studios in California and England (Rockstar North). It is reported that these executives had some hand in creating a negative culture inside the studio. A few more personnel at senior level positions are also no longer in the scene. The study claims the work culture has changed dramatically for the better now.
Areas for Improvement Identified
The management at Rockstar Games appears to have identified certain areas in the way work was being carried on so far to bring in changes. One of the major areas is likely to shrink the very size of the games at the time of their release. The GTA 6, as and when it is released may therefore be smaller in size but more DLCs will be developed and added later on. This policy could even fall in line with an announcement by Take-Two Interactive sometime earlier that they would want to have multiple launches of games in a year.
The gap between the two versions of a game was also sought to be reduced. If the game’s size is reduced and if smaller teams were to keep working on DLCs and add-on contents, it can reduce the “crunch” style of working. Planning, use of technology, adopting flexibility in schedules and investing in training, etc. will all be part of the new course of action for Rockstar.
However, all these need to be done on a sustainable basis instead of just knee-jerk reactions. Only then, their impact can be felt.