Crytek co-founder Avni Yerli has denied claims of unfair dismissal of staff and crunch periods of up to six months at the company’s Franfkurt offices.
It comes as a Tumblr page popped up over the weekend, highlighting Crytek’s “hiring and firing policy of staff at the Frankfurt head office” after wrapping up work on Crysis 2.
“The atmosphere in the office for a couple of years now has meant that staff feel uncertain of their futures within the company and either jump ship, or get fired unlawfully and are forced to legally settle their dispute in the courts,” it reads.
“Several ex-Crytek employees have already been successful in mounting legal battles and won settlements, yet Crytek still treat staff as disposable pieces of meat to be discarded at will. We fully understand that a games company needs to make a profit, and this site isn’t going against the great work that the current employees have made in the past or are currently working on.
“We are merely trying to notify the world that the current amazement bubble surrounding Crytek is unjustified and severely out of sync with other games companies who treat their staff well and continue to create great pieces of work.”
Positions mentioned on the Tumblr page that seen either resignations or people unlawfully fired from included lead community manager, community manager, lead researcher, storyboard & concept artist, concept artist, producer, executive producer and Chief Finance Officer, to name a few.
Yerli, speaking to Develop, says that the claims are “distressing,” though.
“These are completely misleading accusations. One thing that will always be the same is that Crytek respects and values its employees very highly, and equally – that’s very important. Whether it’s an intern, whether it’s a director, it doesn’t change; everyone is important,” he said.
“That isn’t something that goes away just in employment, that’s also in post-employment. Whether there are some people who depart who feel they have not been treated fairly, this is the first time someone has tried to harm us. I think we maintain excellent relationships with ex-employees, and we always try to.
“The fact that we can make strong games and technologies is entirely down to the skill and passion of the people that we work with, and a reflection of the harmony and the competency of our team.”
He did admit that there was crunch work done on Crysis 2, but only up to three months “maximum” with non-enforced weekend work of up to one day also in effect.
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