Staff at TT Games have complained of being forced to crunch to complete the upcoming LEGO Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga.
Over 30 current and former employees spoke to Polygon, which reports that staff were pressured to work longer hours than they were contracted for, both by studio co-founder and creative director Jon Burton but also line managers. Employees have said that six day work weeks of 80-to-100 hours were not uncommon, too.
“A big problem was that crunch was premeditated,” one former member of staff said.
“It wasn’t an emergency protocol for when things went wrong. Instead, it was a tool in the box for production; projects were planned with crunch periods in the schedule, or even worse, crunch was the schedule. [...] It was a regular occurrence because of the type of games we made: movie tie-ins, and kids’ stocking fillers. They all had deadlines dictated by a holiday event or the release of some film.”
In a statement to Polygon, TT Games said: "TT Games is committed to creating a respectful, fair and inclusive workplace for every employee. There have been many efforts in recent years, with new studio leadership and the support of Warner Bros. Games, to nurture a collaborative culture and work-life balance our employees can be proud of.
"Our legacy of delighting fans with the games we have created over the years is very important to us. We recognize our continued and future success relies on sustaining the momentum of the positive changes we have made to date, ensuring every employee feels supported, appreciated and experiences a true sense of belonging."