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Industry Criticizes 'Brutal' Team Bondi Working Practices

L.A. Noire developer Team Bondi has come under fire from games industry professionals and association members, Develop reports.

According to anonymous sources from the studio speaking with IGN at the end of last week, it is alleged that the Australian studio expected at least 60 working hours per week, at times jumping as high as 110 hours per week when milestones had to be met. Studio founder Brendan McNamara confirmed that Team Bondi staff rarely worked "normal" hours but did not confirm the 110-hour figure.

It was also claimed by other anonymous sources that weekend work was "always" expected; that management became "aggressive and demanding," leading to a wave of walkouts and firings; that one programmer was effectively doing four people's jobs; that budgets were stretched; staff were not credited; and that lead staff were powerless against McNamara's demands, McNamara himself described as "the angriest person" one source had ever met. Some of these claims have not been substantiated at this time, and McNamara claims that his studio's work policies are not unfair.

Brian Robbins, chair of the International Game Developers' Association (IGDA) said that the claims, if true, were "absolutely unacceptable and harmful to the individuals involved, the final products, and the industry as a whole." Robbins did not wish to comment further before knowing all the facts, but encouraged any Team Bondi employee or family member to contact [email protected] with comments about the situation -- positive or negative.

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