There have been a few stories recently about intense work conditions, or crunch, at studios making high-profile titles. Earlier this month we read about Anthem, and now we’re hearing about Fortnite. Polygon conducted interviews with employees at Epic Games who detail working over 70 hours a week and discuss how voluntary overtime became an expectation.
Faced with the unexpected growth of Fortnite into a worldwide sensation, Epic needed to quickly turn from a small developer into the custodians of the biggest game in the world. As a result, the studio changed its development model into something capable of keeping up with the growing needs of a game as a service.
Polygon spoke to current and former full-time staff, contractors, and members of the studio’s QA, and customer service teams. According to the report, many were expected to work 70-hour weeks, with that sometimes rising to 100-hour weeks in some cases. Most of those interviewed say they were never forced to stay on for such long hours, but not doing so would have jeopardised their careers.