Skull Island: Rise of Kong, the hot new candidate for 2023’s potential worst game of the year, was reportedly developed in just one year. According to a new report, the game started development in mid-2022 and the team at IguanaBee only had 12 months to finish the title, though overshot it by a few months.
A new report by The Verge, which interviews several anonymous developers that worked on Skull Island: Rise of Kong, revealed the sad circumstances behind its development. Some IguanaBee employees stated that publisher GameMill didn’t give the studio enough time to properly work on the game because executives wanted it done in one year. “The development process of this game was started in June of last year and was aimed to end on June 2 this year. So one year development process,” said an anonymous developer.
While it’s not outright mentioned, the targeted 2 June release of Skull Island: Rise of Kong seemed to coincide with this year’s animated Netflix series Skull Island, which also released in June, so it’s possible that the show could’ve been a big factor behind the game’s rushed development.
Other employees claimed that veteran talents at IguanaBee had been fired from the studio after GameMill refused to cover funding and costs:
“I remember very well that they let go of a colleague who had been there longer than me. Deep down, I knew it was because the publisher didn’t provide them with enough funding to maintain a certain number of people for an extended period.”
It seems like a lot of blame is being pointed at the publisher for simply failing to give the talented team at IguanaBee enough time to finish the project while underpaying staff – or in some cases, firing them to cut costs.
This isn’t the first time this year that we’ve heard reports about bad games getting scathing allegations of underpaid and overworked staff. This year’s The Lord of the Rings: Gollum, the former front-runner for worst game of the year before Skull Island: Rise of Kong came along, also received reports of Daedalic Entertainment mismanaging employees, underpaying staff and generally fostering a toxic work environment.
Source: The Verge