A new report on Techland’s development practices includes quotes from employees who claim that poor management, indecision and the use of homophobic slurry have marred the ongoing work on Dying Light 2. CEO Pawel Marchewka responded to the allegations for a long time – but defended hanging a picture of a naked woman next to a cheetah in his office.
Here is Marchewka’s comment on the photo, from the report on The Gamer:
“The picture in question is of a famous English artist and conservationist David Yarrow, whom I appreciate for his artistic, passionate and dedicated work, and I had never considered that it could offend anyone,”; explains Marchewka. “I find him one of the best if not the best nature photographer. That’s why I hung it in my office. But I want to make sure I’m the right example, so if any of our employees, anonymously, report that they feel uncomfortable with that, I will remove it immediately. “
Video games are art, sure, but are naked women standing next to cheetah art? I want to say: yes, bad art. Here is (not safe for the job) the picture for you to judge yourself. I’m pretty sure this is what Dick Jones from RoboCop would have hanging on his wall.
The rest of the report, which is based on conversations with ten current and former Techland employees who speak on condition of anonymity, paints a picture of a company in disarray. This includes the use of homophobic slur when giving feedback on work, high staff turnover, decisions made and then reversed weeks later, and a management team that allegedly refuses to listen to the employees they hire. Some sources also said that it was difficult to complain about management behavior because the head of HR, Aleksandra Marchewka, is the CEO’s wife.
Many of these allegations reflect reports from the Polish website PolskiGamedev.pl last year, which said that the development was a “mess”.
Last year, Techland cut ties with author Chris Avellone, who had worked on the script and world for Dying Light 2, amid allegations of sexual assault.