A former BioWare Montreal VFX employee has provided some insight into the troubled development development cycle of Mass Effect: Andromeda.
You can read the full piece HERE, but read some of the more interesting excerpts below pertaining to the employee’s criticism of the studio:
“Bioware Edmonton and Montreal symbiosis is broken. Lots of conflicts and bro culture.”
“Lost over 13 leads (game design, art, audio, prog, senior core leads, etc) in 5 years at Bioware Montreal on Mass Effect. Edmonton lost only 3. It is clear that Edmonton has the bigger part of the stick when it comes to purge Leads and Producers who are not aligned with their leadership style.”
“Putting people on performance improvement program (PIP Program) is the new tactics to get rid of people. Once again more than 10 people in Montreal got slammed with this bureaucratic uppercut to let go people that are not bending to Edmonton leadership styles in the last revision cycle. This approach is used by the Montreal Leadership to purge the mess from the lack of vision cause by upper management in the last 4 years (throwing people under the bus to protect bad core management)”
“Renaming crunch to Finaling [sic] mode. Which means company pays for your lunch but you have only 30 minutes to eat and then getting back on the keyboard. Was lasting for over 2 months and was a real catastrophe.”
“Retaliation and harassment is sadly a reality. If you talk and ask questions you will be tag as a trouble maker and end up in a bad position.”
“HR won’t help you out. They will deny the current harassment from Monreal [sic] management by ignoring and not documenting the facts. In other words if you leave don’t talk. Just let it go…”
“Many benifits [sic] got cut due to too much time extension to get the game done.”
It should be noted too that the employee did have some positive things to say in regards to Bioware, suggesting it “used to be a great environment filled with great amount of world class creative talents…[who] work on a great AAA IP… [with a] great location downtown Montreal.”
Additionally, an interesting video has been published showcasing a scene from 2016 and 2017 in which the footage clearly looks better previously. It’s unclear how this would have gone down in quality.
It’s important to note that whilst Mass Effect: Andromeda does have some clear presentation issues, we loved the game for many, many reasons. You can read our full review HERE.