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Atari's plans to lay off more than 50 percent of Eden Games' workforce, plus alleged "mismanagement," were the catalysts for a one-day symbolic strike today by the developer of Test Drive Unlimited 2.
"For several years we are witnessing multiple leader changes at its head, they did not hesitate to get rich despite financial difficulties," said a statement by Eden staff, sent to Gamasutra. Developers at the Lyon, France-based studio complained that they've been subjected to layoffs for a decade, to no meaningful end other than the loss of jobs.
"Each time the recovery project was beautiful and promising, and ended in a failure," the statement said. "We are skeptical about the proposed [plan]."
Atari's unwillingness to negotiate, or so Eden employees allege, were the final straw, and so they struck "to show the employees' determination and mobilization."
Eden's demands include an audience with Atari CEO Jim Wilson, access to financial records regarding the health of the company, and assurances that Eden employees are treated the same as other Atari employees.
Atari gave no comment regarding the matter. More at the link.
Eden Games – they behind Test Drive Unlimited 2 and the V-Rally series – and have had enough of their treatment from Atari, and in the face of enormous redundancies at the company and have gone on strike today.
Eden Games, developer of the Test Drive Unlimited series and Alone in the Dark reboot, is on a "symbolic day strike" today to protest parent company Atari's plans to lay off a whopping 51 of the French studio's 80 employees.
The statement claims that "We had anticipated the problems faced by the company last year... For several years we are witnessing multiple leader changes at its head, they did not hesitate to get rich despite financial difficulties."
An anonymous Eden member has told Gamasutra that the studio decided yesterday to strike after making no progress in two weeks of talks with Atari, and that the layoffs are expected to occur "around June."
The unnamed employee claims that the compensation being offered "is basically half" of one that was offered to victims of a 2009 restructuring at Atari. One of the striker statement's wishes is to "be sure that an employee of Eden Games is compensated the same way as an employee of Atari."
Curiously, Eden also wishes to receive mysterious "financial records" its accountant has requested. The Eden employee mysteriously told Gamasutra that "Unfortunately we cannot give you the detail of the missing documents, this would break the confidentiality agreement." Missing, you say?
Eden's latest game, Test Drive Unlimited 2, received a lukewarm response from critics but the mystery employee told Gamasutra the studio expects it will sell 900,000 copies--an estimate, as Atari won't reveal numbers. "We believe it can be a long-time seller," said the Edenite, as "players continue to play and enjoy the game" even though "there were several issues at TDU2's launch."
My dream online driving game would consist almost entirely of people climbing out of their cars to examine crash damage, their overweight avatars clutching their face in both hands and making noises of unfathomable sadness. Anyway, you’ll find the full feature listing of the Exploration pack after the jump
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