Telltale, the studio behind award-winning narrative-based games has been accused of creating a toxic work environment for employees – which isn’t surprising considering a mass amount of talent has actually left the studio since the rapid expansion of the studio. Speaking to the Verge, a former employee detailed their opinion as to why Telltale is becoming less and less of a hot topic of recent.
“The pace at which the studio operated was both an amazing feat and its biggest problem,” a former employee told The Verge. “Executives would often ask teams to rewrite, redesign, recast, and reanimate up until the very last minute without properly adjusting the schedule. The demands on production only became more intense with each successful release, and at some point, you just don’t have anything left to give.”
Other employees went on to comment on how the studio co-founder Kevin Bruner, become more and more of a toxic lead to work under following the success of The Walking Dead. Specifically, the environment felt like it was lead by fear.
“Inevitably, the Eye of Sauron looks at you, and that beam of light just blows everything up and makes it a hellscape,” one former employee told the site. “A lot of times at Telltale, you don’t feel like you’re wanted there.”
Added another: “It often felt like we were building games specifically for [Bruner]. We were tailoring the type of content we were building – not just gameplay mechanics, but tone, the types of characters we chose to use – to his taste. This was one of the biggest issues with him as a CEO: he was pretty convinced that his taste was everyone’s taste.”
Bruner has responded to these allegations saying that all choices made were for the greater good of the team.