Gamasutra user blog penned by "Rockstar spouse," working conditions at Rockstar San Diego -- the studio responsible for not just the Red Dead franchise, but also Rockstar's proprietary "RAGE" game engine -- have been deteriorating for quite some time due to "mismanagement." Claims ranging from a neverending "crunch" cycle to lack of appreciation to straight up "dishonesty" are leveled in the post, with a handful of comments (some anonymous, some from verified ex-Rockstar San Diego employees) corroborating, and often adding to, the complaints.
"This is EXACTLY the reason I left Rockstar San Diego in February 2009," commented one ex-Rockstar employee. An alleged employee speaking anonymously said, "There were extended core hours, frustrations rising, and then a false promise of the dropping of mandatory Saturdays, which seemed to last for about three such Saturdays." The "Quality of Life" issue discussed in the piece isn't a new one for the games industry. It was first brought up in late 2004 with the "EA Spouse" letter (also anonymous), and again mid last year with Epic Games exec Mike Capps.
We've contacted Rockstar and followed up with Rockstar San Diego employees for more information.