A Reminder That A Lot Of Big Games Exploit Overseas Labor

Illustration for article titled A Reminder That A Lot Of Big Games Exploit Overseas Labor
Screenshot: People Make Games

While most big games released have a main studio that’s often based somewhere like the United States or Canada or the UK, they also frequently make use of outsourcing studios in other countries to get their games made. Studios where, surprise, the working conditions can be not great.


This is explored in the latest episode of the excellent People Make Games, where the team look at these outsourcing specialists, which are frequently hired by big developers and publishers to handle things like 3D modelling and concept art (indeed, we’ve featured some of these kind of studios on Fine Art before).

One such place is Lemon Sky Studios in Malaysia, where despite contributing to games like The Last Of Us Part 2, Spider-Man: Miles Morales and Gears 5, is also accused of working its 300 staff to the bone, with complaints ranging from 12+ hour days to weekend work to staff breaking down in tears in the bathroom.

You can learn about Lemon Sky, and a lot more, in the excellent episode below.

Luke Plunkett is a Senior Editor based in Canberra, Australia. He has written a book on cosplay, designed a game about airplanes, and also runs cosplay.kotaku.com.



This is why I’ve never seen why “make the Video Game Industry Unionize” makes any sense.

It would just be only for the US, it would just push major publishers who only care about money to other countries.

A Global Union would be impossible to do because of different countries labour laws.