Following the controversy around Red Dead Redemption 2‘s alleged crunch time culture, some intrepid gamers think they’ve found a secret message from the game’s devs, about the murky accusations.
Dan Houser, the co-founder of the game’s developer Rockstar, made comments prior to the game’s release that some members of staff had been working 100 hour weeks in order to get Red Dead Redemption 2 ready in time.
While Houser denied he meant members of the team were expected to participate in this crunch period, it seems one sly member of staff had something to contribute to the whole affair.
A Reddit user noticed that an in-game description for the Cattleman Revolver firearm seemed to hint heavily at this period of crunch, and the development team that worked on it.
The description reads:
It is made by skilled laborers who work tireless hours each week and on weekends for little pay in order to bring you the finest revolver on the field today.
Check it out:
On its own, this is fairly innocuous, but when you factor in the whole hubbub about employees being worked to the bone, it surely raises some eyebrows.
It should be pointed out that Houser was quick to say he wasn’t referring to the entire workforce with his comments, stating that he meant himself and a few other high-ups in the company were pulling long hours to get the job done, and this wasn’t expected or encouraged anywhere else.
Regardless of this PR nightmare, Red Dead Redemption 2 is selling like hot cakes and is being widely touted as the only real game of the year contender. An incredible display by the talented folks at Rockstar to be sure, but hopefully their love and passion wasn’t taken advantage of in order to reach that achievement.
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Charlie Cocksedge is a journalist at UNILAD. He graduated from the University of Manchester with an MA in Creative Writing, where he learnt how to write in the third person, before getting his NCTJ. His work has also appeared in such places as The Guardian, PN Review and the bin.