The Callisto Protocol Faces Crunch Culture Criticisms in Response to Deleted Tweet

Update: Glen Schofield addressed the contents of the deleted tweet in a follow-up tweet shared a few hours afterwards.

"Anyone who knows me knows how passionate I am about the people I work with," Schofield said. "Earlier I tweeted how proud I was of the effort and hours the team was putting in. That was wrong. We value passion and creativity, not long hours. I'm sorry to the team for coming across like this. "

Original: The Callisto Protocol is one of the year's most-anticipated horror games, but a now-deleted tweet from the game's director describing the current working conditions at Striking Distance Studio may have soured the anticipation around the game for some. Glen Schofield, the CEO of Striking Distance Studios and game director working on The Callisto Protocol, said that the developers are working "6-7 days a week" and are working for 12 to 15 hours during those days. The tweet that's since been deleted has been received as one that not only outs an example of crunch culture within Striking Distance Studios but one that embraces and normalizes this tasking aspect of game development.

The tweet in question includes figures one would typically see in crunch culture reports released after a game launches or in social posts from disgruntled developers. Schofield's deleted tweet (now archived) read as follows:

"I only talk about the game during an event," Schofield said. "We r working 6-7 days a week, nobody's forcing us. Exhaustion, tired, Covid but we're working. Bugs, glitches, perf fixes. 1 last pass thru audio. 12-15 hr days.This is gaming. Hard work. Lunch, dinner working. U do it cause ya luv it."

Immediately after it was posted, Schofield started receiving responses from people who cautioned him that the described working conditions were not examples of passion and dedication but of crunch culture instead. Some called it "the definition of crunch culture," and in forums discussing the tweet, some criticized Schofield for what they perceived to be a tone-deaf perspective on the situation. People pointed out that the "nobody's forcing us" part of the tweet may be true for Schofield himself but may not be as applicable to Striking Distance devs who may feel pressured to work this schedule.

"You're the CEO, you're forcing the employees," one critical response to the tweet said. "That is if the employees are also working 6 days 12-15 hours, which you'd kind of imagine they would have to be."

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We'll update this story accordingly should Schofield, Striking Distance Studios, or The Callisto Protocol publisher Krafton offer a follow-up on these recent crunch culture criticisms.