Ubisoft‘s rhythm game Just Dance 2023 allegedly struggled with a number of labour issues during a single year of production, with a union claiming 10 per cent of employees burned out during the project.
Yesterday (March 20) an infographic was posted by the Ubisoft Paris branch of Solidaires Informatique, which helps workers organise within technology, consulting and game industries.
According to the infographic, 10 per cent of employees at Ubisoft Paris who worked on Just Dance 2023 experienced burnout within one year of production. Additionally, there was reportedly work stoppage (sick leave) every four weeks.
NME reached out to Ubisoft to ask if the statistics were legitimate – and if Ubisoft Paris had taken any remedial measures – but the company declined to comment.
Earlier in the year, staff at Ubisoft Paris went on strike after Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillermot told workers “the ball is in your court” to turn around the company’s troubled finances.
“According to Guillemot: the ball is in our court (but the money stays in his pocket),” said Solidaires Informatiques in January. “When Mr. Guillemot speaks of ‘attrition’ and ‘organizational adjustments’, it means: staff reductions, discreet studio closures, salary cuts, disguised layoffs, etc.”
“On several occasions, Mr. Guillemot is trying to shift the blame (once again) onto the employees; he expects us to be mobilized, to ‘give it our all’, to be ‘as efficient and lean as possible’. These words mean something: overtime, managerial pressure, burnout,” the union added.
At the time, Solidaires Informatiques demanded a 10 per cent pay rise for staff and an improvement to working conditions.
The news comes as sister studio Ubisoft Montpellier reportedly faces a labour investigation from French authorities, due to high rates of employee burnout and sick leave.
In a statement, Ubisoft claimed that developers at Montpellier are “undergoing well-being assessments through a third-party”.