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Unsurprisingly, GTA 6 devs aren't too keen on Rockstar's "reckless" decision to drag them back to the office

“As usual, there has been zero consultation with us: the people who these policy changes most affect.”

Lucia in jail in GTA 6.
Image credit: VG247/Rockstar Games.

After Rockstar Games reportedly asked its employees working on GTA 6 - a small upcoming release you might have heard of - to return to in-office working once April arrives, a number of the company’s developers have made clear just how unhappy they are about that idea.

If you’re out of the loop, according to a report from Bloomberg, the order has been given for Rockstar staff to return to working in actual offices five days a week - rather than remotely or on a hybrid basis - as the studio kicks into the final stages of GTA 6’s development. In the internal email communicating the change, the company’s head of publishing Jenn Kolbe apparently cited productivity and security - remember all those leaks - as the main reasons for the sudden need to inconvenience people.

You’ll probably not be surprised to learn that a number of those people aren’t too happy about the change, which is currently set to come into effect on April 15, with several having now spoken out via the The Independent Workers’ union of Great Britain (IWGB), a UK-based union that’s criticised it. In a post on the IWGB’s website, several anonymous Rockstar employees who’re represented by the union offer their views, with one referring to working from home as a “lifeline for many” that’s now being taken away.

“After so many broken promises we now fear management may even be paving the way for a return to toxic ‘crunch’ practices,” this employee says: “Senior [Rockstar] leadership need to rethink their reckless decision making and engage with their staff to find an arrangement that works for everyone.”

“As usual, there has been zero consultation with us: the people who these policy changes most affect,” another Rockstar staffer adds, “Just one of my concerns is being forced to work late hours in the office to maintain contact with global teams when before we could log on from home to attend late meetings. This will mean missing out on spending time with our families. I am also aware of colleagues who have health issues preventing full time office work who are now left in limbo.”

Given that the company’s employees submitted a petition with 175 signatures to management just last year in the hopes of ensuring that options for remote working would remain available going forwards and some of its ex-devs have begun to share how unhealthy the working conditions were at some studios during the climax of GTA 5’s development, hopefully a compromise that works for everyone can be reached.

Last month, Rockstar revealed that the GTA series as a whole has surpassed the 420 million sales mark, so listening to some of the people who’ve contributed to that success would be a nice move.

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