The serious business of making games

While I was driving home today, I heard on NPR that they’re doing a story on this tomorrow (Jan 13th) on All Things Considered. Congrats on the national coverage.

Yes, I heard that little preview too. Hopefully I’ll get to hear the story on my drive home tomorrow.

Hey, thanks! I believe you will get to hear from several of my amazing colleagues!

Ho, congrats!

One to keep an eye on, I hope.

Very cool, although I was hoping it would be a bit longer and more in-depth.

Indeed!

Why work five days a week (or more) when you could work four?

(The Verge mentioned Vodeo in the union context, but may have missed that we also have a four-day work week.)

8 hours per day? Or are we talking about a flexible structure but still 40 hours a week?

I assume most of these cases are 8 hours a day. That’s what it is at Vodeo, though we’re also fairly flexible with hours.

I worked 4x10s for years but for a telco not game dev. It was awesome. The wife is at a hospital and has 3x12 which is even better.

My experience as a knowledge worker has always been that I may be at my desk for 40 (or 50, or 60…) hours, but most weeks my job actually gets done in somewhere between 25-35. Hopeful that this movement continues to gain traction; it’s been the subject of a couple news stories outside gaming over the last couple years as COVID has forced companies to rethink their labor practices.

Work from home has changed a lot, at least for me. I feel less and less constrained by a 40-hour week because I don’t feel the peer pressure of everyone being in the office together from 9-5 (or more likely 8-6), so I work as much as I need to and don’t spend time sitting at my desk browsing the web so I look busy.

Amen. Unfortunately, there is still a very strong tradition among middle management in particular that time at desk = work, regardless of what is actually done. That, and the need of these parasites to wield petty power over others means all too often you wind up wasting a ton of time to satisfy the bean counters.

Oh man, so much this. I have always wanted to be somewhere where it’s actually not about hours * (butt + chair), but no matter the talk there’s always been that expectation that no, you’re physically at your desk for 40 hours.

Full-remote, I can get up and take a walk or do some light exercise or just fuck off for a minute when I have to without worrying about how it looks to the rest of the office. If I finish my task at 3 and my brain is donezo – not unusual! – I can just go into “keep an eye on Slack” mode without spending two hours reading xkcd archives or whatever.

My productivity hasn’t changed – given the output of the engineers around me I am perfectly confident in my output, heh – but I’m a hell of a lot happier outside of the whole COVID isolation thing.

No freaking joke, man. Luckily I’m in a job market such that I can easily and confidently give the proverbial finger to all those workplaces and find one that treats me like a dang human.

At lots of places I’ve worked there have been couches and lounge chairs that I guess are ostensibly meant to be places where employees could go and rest if they need to. But nobody ever uses them. I certainly would never dare lay down on a couch at the office and take a 20-minute nap, no matter how terrible or tired I’m feeling, but you better believe that I’ll do it at home if necessary, and I’m all the better for it.

I’m quite happy to be in academia at this stage of my life, the last bastion of utterly unsupervised and unassessed labor where ultimately no one really knows, or seemingly cares, whether you do your job! Or, for that matter, what constitutes “doing your job.”

I am joking, well, partially; everyone I work with has such an internal motivation to do the best we can that it works out well, but I get a kick out of the complaints I hear from colleagues who never worked outside off the ivory tower. They do not know how good they have have it.

This, this, a thousand times this. I have literally been taken to task for chilling in the cafeteria for a meeting because we didn’t look like we were working hard enough or whatever.

Unfortunately, I think that’s changing for the worse. I’ve seen job postings (admittedly for community colleges) that state explicitly the job hours will be x to y. I have not applied for those jobs.

Anecdotally, a former colleague at a 4-year college has stated with me that a new department chair has started instituting something similar there with a faculty member she thinks isn’t in the office enough.

I’ve also noticed at a past 4-year the ethos that meeting required posted office hours wasn’t “really” enough. They thought you should be in your office as much as possible for any potential drop-in students.