Steve Gaynor, co-founder Gone home Fullbright developers have left their position of creative leader and manager over their latest game. Open roads after the accusations, he contributed to the creation of a “toxic” work environment.
Earlier today, Open roads’ The following tweet was posted on Twitter, stating only that “We … strongly believe in creating a healthy and collaborative work environment,” and that Gaynor “has stepped back from his role as creative leader and manager.”
Soon after, Polygon informed about the departure in more detailsaying that since development Open roads In early 2019, fifteen employees left the studio, while twelve of those who left spoke to the site and “stated that their departure was at least in part due to Gaynor’s behavior towards workers, especially women in team “.
The report also says that 10 of the 12 employees who quit were women, and that Gaynor actually left his position back in March, “after it became clear that the steps that were already being taken to improve his interaction with the team were only giving interim results ”. One former employee “in a management position” told Polygon that “Working for him was often like working for a mean girl in high school. His main weapon was to laugh at people’s opinions and embarrass them in front of other people. “
While accusations– and the revelation that steps have already been taken to “improve his interaction with the team” are significant, Gaynor has not left the company or even developed the game. Instead, he will “move into the role of a writer,” where he will remain one of six people reportedly still working on the game at Fullbright.
Fulbright released critically acclaimed Gone home in 2014 and then Tacoma in 2017. Open roads was supposed to be released in 2021.
Update 4/8/2021 9:37 PM ET: GAynor released a statement saying:
Hello. I have a statement about my role in Fullbright. Earlier this year, I gave up my role as Creative Director at Open Roads. My leadership style was offensive to the people who worked at Fullbright, and for that I sincerely apologize.
Taking a step back gave me the space and perspective to see how my role should change and how I need to learn and improve as part of a team, including working with an experienced management consultant and rethinking my attitude to working at Fullbright.
I care deeply about Open Roads and the Fullbright team. I’m sad that I gave up on the day-to-day development of Open Roads, but did the right thing. I fully believe in and support the Open Roads team to bring the game to completion.