Two former developers from MachineGames (DOOM, Wolfenstein: The New Order) have announced the formation of a new game studio. Bad Yolk, which is situated in Sweden, hopes to create high-quality video games within an environment that abolishes "crunch" mentality and safely manages the work/life balance of its employees.
Speaking in interviews with GamesIndustry.biz, co-founder Michael Paixao spoke of the stress and mental fatigue that he and his co-founder Joel Jonsson felt while working as technical artists within MachineGames. "I've been in the AAA industry for many years, and honestly I was starting to get burned out," said Paixao. "It was really unhealthy, a lot of times. That was one of the big motivators for me and Joel when we left. We decided to try and do it better, and treat people right. We feel that good games will come out of that."
If this initial burnout wasn't enough of an issue, the formation of Bad Yolk itself proved quite a headache. A contract clause sought to block efforts by Bad Yolk to recruit their former colleagues from MachineGames to join them on this new venture. This was eventually overturned in the courts however, but not before going to one of the highest levels of the Swedish legal system.
Givien that Paixao and Jonsson are still driven to create games, even after their own experiences and the aforementioned legal battle, Bad Yolk seems to be a studio determined to make a name for itself. Hopefully, we'll hear more about the fledgling company's first release very soon.
Former MachineGames devs form new game studio Bad Yolk [GamesIndustry.biz]