EG: The Fall Of Realtime Worlds

By Jim Rossignol on November 1st, 2010 at 8:17 pm.


Our chums over at Eurogamer are running an article about the catastrophic failure of APB:

After receiving the news, most of the former employees left for the pub straight away. But a core of the now jobless staff remained at the studio well into the night. Though the studio was finished and APB was effectively dead they didn’t want to say goodbye, to each other or the game.

“We stayed on, even though we knew we were fired,” say Bateman. “We were running the servers, trying to get contingency plans in place, so we could try to do stuff from home. It was like the Titanic was sinking but people were trying to patch it up just in case.”

It’s large, comprehensive, filled with insider quotes, and worth a read.

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64 Comments »

  1. Martin Coxall says:

    I still think there needs to be some kind of investigation looking into the sheer bloody-minded reckless fiscal stupidity that allowed this to happen to so many good people.

    • Ross Mills says:

      It was a “Hiring plan”.

      The idea is you get 100 million in the bank, and then based on that plan a method to constantly hire people so that on APB’s release you’re as close to zero money as possible.

      No, seriously, that was the plan! There were graphs of the constantly-increasing planned employee numbers, and they were incredibly proud of them.

    • Martin Coxall says:

      Somebody should have pointed out that just because you’ve written a plan down, doesn’t make it a *good* plan.

    • bob_d says:

      It’s amazing to me that any company would hire to the point where they had no funds in the bank when the product was released; how could that be anything but a disaster. I suspect they fell into the same trap I’ve seen other companies fall prey to: they knew the game had problems and decided that the solution was more man-power. They tried to hire their way to a fixed game. Every company I’ve seen do that failed; hiring more people for the purpose of fixing fundamental game problems ends up creating more issues than it solves.

    • Harlander says:

      Ah, the old “putting more people on an overrunning project” gambit. It’s like no-one read The Mythical Man-Month at all.

  2. Ross Mills says:

    When they say that “everyone” was gathered in the meeting room every Friday, they fail to include the fact that us “Project: MyWorld” chaps never were.

    I suppose they were “APB” meetings, rather than “RTW” meetings, though. So it makes complete sense. I doubt we’d have given much constructive feedback aside from the complaints about the driving and shooting which we fed back after playtests anyway.

    • Martin Coxall says:

      Hush now. You were just playing it wrong.

    • Ross Mills says:

      To be fair, there’s some nice tech in there. Some of it was very well done.

      The people worked really hard to get that game going, people I knew very well broke their backs to get it out the door, and I’m just as disappointed as anyone that it wasn’t succesful. But things have happened now, and most people have moved on.

      I’m just really sorry for those who haven’t had good opportunities after losing their jobs. Some have had to take jobs with a lot less satisfaction, and I REALLY hope they manage to land back on their feet eventually.

    • Martin Coxall says:

      Presumably you mean the ones the ended up working for that corporate sociopath Bobby Kotick.

  3. Lobotomist says:

    This Bateman guy sounds like the office optimist. Every office has one.

    Its the guy completely blind to anything that is going on around him , wearing rose tinted glasses every morning.

    While in the same time people were probably talking about train wreck about to happen at least for a year , at APB offices.

    Really wrong person to be asked about the game.

    • RQH says:

      @Lobotomist: No kidding. Realtime Worlds might have turned out to be the industry’s latest greatest cautionary tale of mismanagement and reckless spending, but they had a pool table, so they couldn’t be all bad!

      From what I’ve heard, it seems like the quality of APB is almost beside the point. Sure, they would not have gone under if it had been good, but that’s just making a series of terrible decisions and getting lucky. I mean, if the plan was to spend all the money, that doesn’t leave much room to make the product good if it requires more time to do it. Again, just from what I’ve heard, it sounds like they should have been cutting costs (and employees, unfortunately) a year out if they wanted to have a hope of survival. It sounds like they were in a position when APB released of “Damned if you do, damned if you don’t.” They had to cross their fingers and hope that hype would provide enough sales to give them the cashflow to actually finish the game.

    • bob_d says:

      “Sure, they would not have gone under if it had been good”
      The irony is that I’m not even sure that’s true. Given their burn-rate, a reasonably successful PC-only release probably would not have been enough to keep them afloat for any length of time. Game budgets are so huge for ambitious titles that even a company with a “successful” game can easily fail these days. If some of the information about the budget on that game is true, they were counting on it being a monster-hit of the first order to make a profit. (i.e. Starcraft 2 sized sales numbers…) They made some crazy assumptions as to their future success.

    • Manley Pointer says:

      Isn’t the purpose of a community “officer”/manager/coordinator like Bateman just to put a positive spin on everything for forum posters and players? It’s really no surprise that he would give such an upbeat account, despite not working for RTW anymore — it would reflect poorly on him if he aired a bunch of dirty laundry about a company whose game he recently promoted.

      The real surprise here is that Eurogamer would rely entirely on a marketing professional to source their article. Outside of the anecdotes, most of his comments are pure cliche — “the studio was like a family,” “I had the best job in the world,” “I love APB,” etc. Zero insight or analysis from Bateman about how RTW went down, mostly a whitewash of material that was already covered in blogs from employees who were much more honest and intelligent about their experience. I was kinda interested in the article after reading it was “filled with insider quotes,” but actually all those quotes come from one person — a marketer, not a developer.

    • Kadayi says:

      @RQH

      I’m actually with Bob here tbh. I think it’s a bit harsh of Jimbo to put the blame of RTWs collapse at the feet of APB. Even if RTW had shipped a couple of million units of APB I doubt it would of sustained their financial burn rate for more than a couple of months before they hit the same financial problems, simply because of their monthly overheads Vs an ill conceived financial model based around ingame items.

    • Tacroy says:

      Dude worked as a community outreach officer. That’s the position for an incurable optimist if I ever saw one.

  4. Mechorpheus says:

    I do find it slightly amusing that ‘ABP is out now on PC’ is written at the bottom of that article. It is shocking how long boxes for that stayed on shelves after it died.

    • bob_d says:

      Seems to be true of all dead MMOs. Whenever I go to game stores, I always see at least one box for an online game that gave up the ghost months earlier.

    • Bascule42 says:

      APB is £25 on Amazon still, despite many reviews mentioning the fact that it’s a dead game.

    • Bhazor says:

      My local Cexchange ((second hand games/dvds/ shop) a truly terrible name I know) has about a dozen copies up for sale at the moment. I have to wonder whether thats actually legal to sell what with it being literally unplayable.

    • matte_k says:

      @ Bhazor: which branch of CEX is that? I work in one, and the company was told not to buy or sell any copies once it went public with the closure, so they shouldn’t be there. If they were purchased as sealed copies beforehand, they should have been taken down by now.

  5. trooperdx3117 says:

    Is it just me or does Bateman seem too positive, now I know that you can’t just blame one person for the failure of a game but surely you can be at least aware of the obvious mis-management of the game when Beta testers feedback wasnt being listened to

    • bob_d says:

      I think the internal expectation was that they would release patches until the game was “fixed,” not knowing that there weren’t the operating funds left to do that.
      Employees generally aren’t clued into the financial issues of the company. Management doesn’t want to lose their best employees every time the financial situation is rocky. Sometimes management will actively lie to employees after the company has run out of money to keep them in the company while hoping to find additional funds to keep things going. I’ve worked for three game companies that hand financial problems, in all cases the employees found out how serious they were when we were all laid off. In one case, even the management didn’t know there were funding problems until the week before (the financial backers, over a weekend, went from “don’t worry about the next round of funding, it’s coming” to “we’re not giving you any more money”).

    • bob_d says:

      @bob_d “…had financial problems…”

  6. Toby says:

    Such a sad story. It’s not a pretty sight to see a game die so quickly, especially such an ambitious game.

  7. abhishek says:

    As unfortunate as it is to read the perspective of actual people who lost their jobs over this, it does seem that this disaster was avoidable. It’s not like they were blindsided by it. Their game was released in a sorry state, even though they had feedback months in advance that could possibly have salvaged it if they had bothered to pay attention to it. Getting the character customization right or the online store right seems so pointless when the core gameplay itself was wrong.

    • Bhazor says:

      I think it’s the old Romero/3D Realms trap of making a massively successful debut and then going bankrupt trying to live up to your own hype. That and they were busy playing pool and paying each other too much.

  8. Scott PM says:

    Seems like a pretty weak little puff-piece to me. Sure, they may have burnt through 100 mil of investment capital and then pooped out an unplayable turd of a game, but they had pool tables in the office! And the people who worked there kinda liked each other! Wow!

  9. Vae Victus says:

    The “APB is out now on PC” footer at the end of the article gave me a little chuckle.

  10. josh g. says:

    I got halfway through this article and started skimming for something worth reading. I’m sorry, but the viewpoint of one QA Lead / Community Whatsit who was on the team for one year is a really strange perspective to focus on.

    The guy sounds like he was starstruck at getting his first game industry job – which is totally predictable, and totally useless when trying to get the big picture of what went wrong.

  11. X23 says:

    It’s a shame that companies like this, that try to innovate, and treat their employees right die, while other companies that make derivative soulless games, and try to extract as much money as possible from both game developers and consumers thrive (activision). Sadly Realtime Worlds took on something too ambitious and mismanaged its development. I can respect them for trying to make a different kind of MMO.

  12. RvLeshrac says:

    Does anyone *ACTUALLY* wonder why RTW went under, and why APB was a terrible game? Because those of us who played it, and tested it, don’t.

    I’ve always wondered about the post-mortems from failed companies/developers/games. Usually, they’re lists of “things what went wrong” that anyone who had ever purchased a product from/used a product by/played the entity/thing in question could have stated year(s) before the failure.

    The problem is that they don’t want to bother listening to anyone who isn’t “positive” until they’re past the point of no return. But that’s what you get when management is more concerned with “opportunities for success” than they are with “things we fucked up.”

    • Sarkhan Lol says:

      Ha ha, no, no one “wonders”, exactly. For an awful lot of people, it’s a simple, certain fact that APB died because we were mean to it and spread a lot of libelous negative publicity and didn’t support RTW by paying for their bad, unfinished game.

    • Manley Pointer says:

      I like how the article claims that the “first rumblings of discontent” began with beta testing. Like nobody on the team noticed the core gameplay was lacking until then? Everyone internally thought the driving was great and the shooting was great?

    • Kadayi says:

      @Manley Pointer

      I think the biggest issue the game had more than anything else was that for it to play well you really needed to be playing it on an extremely beefy PC. Many of the games ‘problems’ really came down to poor performance issues. Once you were running it at a good 60 fps, it was quite enjoyable, esp with clan mates. Certainly, there were game play issues, but nothing that couldn’t have been addressed, or necessarily made it a broken title.

    • Mitch says:

      Hardly. I know exactly why it failed: I had an open beta code and a friend had an open beta code. Neither of us were even able to create an account and log on. The APB idea was solid, the execution, well, needless to say the development team fell prey to one of the most common faults; they lost sight of their core objective which was to make a compulsive game which people could log into, play, and pay for. No one sits at work saying “I can’t wait to get home to customise my APB character” – they sit at work and say “I can’t wait to get home so I can put some caps in some fools in APB”.

  13. Xercies says:

    No wonder they went down giving that level of niceness to QA people.

  14. Ruiner66 says:

    Seriously, $100 million dollars and look what you got. A game with Playstation 1 gameplay and okish graphics. They didn’t even build the game engine, they used the Unreal 3 engine. Where did the money go?

    Someone pocketed some serious cash. That game could of been made with 10% of that cash. I’ve seen plenty of FTP titles come out with same level of graphics and more complex gameplay.

    • FatherD says:

      I agree 100% They write the article like everyone had no idea what happened and they were all innocent.
      Almost as if it was an accident that just happens in the industry.

      “Opps I dropped the cake/100mil. game, *shrug* it happens, sorry.”

    • Kadayi says:

      Tell me more of these File Transfer Protocol games Usul ….

    • Bhazor says:

      I may be naive but I never considered the possibility of embezzelment. But lines like
      “The studio’s treatment of its staff also extended to generous relocation packages for those employees making the journey up to Scotland. They could either take a lump cash sum or accept temporary housing in one the studio’s company flats. In addition, RTW offered overtime across the board – unremarkable elsewhere but a rare luxury in the world of videogame development. ” really sound a bit strange. Especially seeing as Bateman was offered this only a year before the game sunk. Surely someone in the company must have thought money was getting tight.

    • Ruiner66 says:

      FTP = F2P ( I don’t believe in using numbers in place of words)

      That is interesting Bhazor, but does that equal up to $100 mil? I mean, come on. 2 actual zones to play the game and 1 social zone. Simplistic weapons and terrible driving. The hardest stuff to do was probably put decal and music program, but both of this were so simplistically done (or lacking in features.) The guns were prehistoric almost (no recoil). Driving felt like trying to steer a pregnant cow with mad cows disease. There is nothing in the game that warrants the time nor money spent on it.

      Seriously, what APB was does not equal 100 million dollars. There is a huge black hole where that money went, because it didn’t go into the game. Someone (or someones) had to of made out with healthy bank accounts.

    • Tacroy says:

      I don’t know what they were paying people, but –

      Assume that an extremely generous relocation package costs the company ~$100,000. Assume that they hired 100 employees and gave them all that ridiculously generous relocation package.

      That accounts for $10 million out of $100 million.

      Assume that they paid their employees well – yearly salary of $100,000, for each of those hundred employees (I know there were ~150, but this makes the math easier). Again, that’s $10 million per year out of that $100 million, so over the course of five years that’s $50 million.

      We’re up to $60 million making some seriously generous assumptions about employee compensation, so let’s ignore for now how much they would have paid for miscellaneous employee costs – equipment and whatever governmental overhead there is, etcetera.

      Now let’s assume, generously (I think), that their facilities cost $2 million a year. Over five years, that’s another $10 million.

      So that’s like 70% of their total expenditures covered, but I can’t imagine what else they were spending money on. Maybe another 10 – 20 million over five years for executive salaries, and another 10 million on server equipment?

      Maybe I have the orders of magnitude wrong on some of these, but I just can’t see how a company this size legitimately spends that much money on a game like this. I mean, $100 million is on the order of what Blizzard spent to make Starcraft II; I just don’t understand how such a shitty game could come out of all that money. You might get a turd, but at least it would be a turd polished to a golden sheen; this turd didn’t even have the benefit of a quick spray of Febreeze.

      It’s nonsensical. I am totally at a loss.

    • Raiven says:

      Relocation packages were never anything remotely like that amount however they were one of the few companies that were willing to help people relocate so much, it was simply a necessary evil to attract the people they wanted to Dundee. Actual salaries varied quite dramatically, QA testers were paid £12k a year while apparently the CEO got £200k and one of the main complaints was often you could have 2 people doing the same job on dramatically different salaries as it depended on when you came into the project and how well you negotiated it.

      One of the other big costs were the 2 massive data center’s…they had 1 in Boulder Colorado and another in Frankfurt. You have to remember ofc that they were building a company and not just a game, as such they needed the people, server structures, customer support centers etc as well as the titles themselves. The long term plan was ofc to be able to use this stuff for future products as well including MyWorld and whatever else came after, hindsight ofc will probably show them they shoulda just focused on the here and now of it all. Yep they spent $100m but it wasn’t all just on APB, My World also sucked up a stupid amount of cash. For what was essentially a social/casual game the cost of MyWorld is ridiculous, the new buyer got it for a stupidly low amount tantamount to theft…

    • poop says:

      I think a large portion of the remaining cash went to inspiring marketing like getting some douchebag to tattoo some wings on his back and wear a waistcoat

    • Kadayi says:

      @Ruiner66 @Tacroy

      You guys really need to get it out of your heads that APB alone burnt through the $100 million, as well as the financial logistics of how much running a company of 350 people costs. If you’d paid attention to the whole situation you’d understand that RTW were working on Myworld for just as long as they were on APB. With respect to overheads, I work in a company with about 100 employees and our monthly churn is in the region of 750k. That’s £9 million a year, and we are a third of the size RTW was. I also envisage their month to month overheads were substantially more than ours are. Now don’t get me wrong, I certainly believe based on the various articles that are emerging, reading between the lines that there was a gross amount of mis-management going on (a toxic combination of ‘Too many cooks’ & ‘Emperors new clothes’, but I think it’s important to understand that the investment money didn’t just go into the one project.

  15. Kronyx says:

    It feels like a few drunk buddies got the idea to make a game where people shoot at each other and got a few other drunk people to join them and they found a briefcase with 100$ dollars in it lying on the sidewalk.

    And that’s how APB got shat out of a hellhole.

  16. El_MUERkO says:

    I got into one of the earliest Beta’s, there were two servers up for only a couple of hours a week and we’d all pile on to experience APB, two hours of playtime, my first test session, told me they were utterly fucked!

    The constant industry positivity, people from Epic playing it at saying it was awesome etc, baffled me, what were they thinking!?! RTW going to pull depth, replayability and stability out of their asses at the last minute? If that’s the case then it’s no wonder so many developers are folding!

    • FatherD says:

      I agree, I think it was a case of group think/The Emperor has no Clothes.
      Everyone was too scared to step forward and say it sucked maybe? I dunno, but even saying that gives them too much credit. The amount of time this was in Dev (Five years? Wow…) how could you over look things like, you know, THE GAMEPLAY!

    • Tacroy says:

      But that’s the thing! Everyone is saying that the beta players kept on hammering on the fact that the game sucked, but nobody seemed to pay attention to them.

      What the hell happened?

    • poop says:

      I think a different APB grumpy developer postmortem (one not written by a glorified tea boy) said that they could see the writing on the wall about a year away from release but their entire management was way too bloated to actually change the game until like two months after release

    • sinister agent says:

      But that’s the thing! Everyone is saying that the beta players kept on hammering on the fact that the game sucked, but nobody seemed to pay attention to them.

      What the hell happened?

      This sounds an awful lot like… well, almost every company in any industry I’ve ever dealt with. It’s why management consultancy – one of the greatest cons of our age – is an industry and not just a joke. All they do is repeat verbatim what the company’s own staff have been saying for months, if not years, maybe with a few buzzwords and meaningless statistics thrown in.

      Awful that in this case it cost so many people, but there it is.

  17. GHudston says:

    I mourn APB. Not because it was a good game, but because I’ve rarely seen a game with such untapped potential. Given the time it could have been great.

    • sinister agent says:

      Same. It was the first time I’d actually heard about an MMO that I thought might possibly be something I would enjoy playing. As my PC was too rubbish to run it, it dropped off my radar months before its release. Next thing I heard, it was dead. A real shame.

  18. no says:

    I somehow doubt this story. In my experience, when a company has laid you off, your access to things is terminated immediately (within hours of the event, if not before you are actually notified that you are laid off). You are then sent home, even if you are given two weeks notice – they pay you for the two weeks, but don’t want you there during that time. If you work on campus, they also tend to escort you out by security, as if the act of being laid off has suddenly turned you into a criminal.

  19. Mark says:

    RTW had $100 million and APB always had potential — that was the problem in a nutshell. If you have seemingly never ending supplies of dosh and a cool-looking game to develop, problems can always be glossed over. Unfortunately, APB never came close to delivering on the hype. Most of the developers I used to speak to were fully aware that it wasn’t going to be well-received on release due to various fundamental problems (driving, shooting, matchmaking, lack of content etc.) Anyone who played the game in alpha or beta knew it — the testers knew it and were vocal about it, as were a lot of the developers. I played it years ago in alpha and all of the things I criticised in alpha were present in the released game. The trouble is that — for whatever reason — the team _collectively_ failed to acknowledge and fix the problems. The producers & upper management carried on like everything was great and the game was going to be a big success and basically stifled frank and realistic discussions.

    Please don’t read that Eurogamer article and assume everyone was in the Happy Bus, careering off The Cliff of Great Success. While many certainly were in The Happy Bus of Great Success, pretty much everyone else I spoke to in the pub was far more prosaic, and this was far before the sackings were rumoured. The trouble is, when you’ve got 200+ people working for a company and an absolute _horrendous_ management structure, it becomes very difficult to effect any kind of meaningful change.

    The APB team weren’t blameless, but really, RTW’s structure, practices and politics choked the life out of that game.

    • Lobotomist says:

      Same thing happens in my office. And we are only 40 people.

      God I wish my company returns to when we were only 6. I swear more things were done than than now.

  20. pipman3000 says:

    if only video game companies could get government bail outs

  21. Mikko Eronen says:

    I’m amazed more about how badly people take and criticise games today. APB was not as bad as the image media and people built of it. We see countless of games today that sells well and people rank them average or higher systematically and those games make profit. Sure APB had a monthly fee but paying average 13-14 euros per month isn’t much just to pay for the server upkeep and characters.

    Driving in APB was much, much better than in Grand Theft Auto for example. I really liked it. After playing APB I was unable to get used to GTA’s driving again.

    I loved the sound and character customizing and the action was fun when it worked. Biggest blunt it took was when people tried to play this game alone. It didn’t work well. Larger team fights were the real fruit.

    The article gave a good point of view of one employee that had all the motivation to keep going but only to see and experience the biggest disappointment you could possibly go through. You can have a polished image and yet someone else can have a lot of complaining to do of those same things. It’s all about the perspective and how you take and see things. Btw, a pool table isn’t that expensive!

    In my eyes, media and community killed a game that had a great potential. RTW also made some very bad decisions. This thing was more like a usual air plane crash, a sum of many small events that cause a catastrofic chain reaction.

    I still miss APB though, it left a big hole to my gameplay.

  22. ExRTW says:

    For those at a loss to how we blew through $100 million dollars. Most of these numbers were ‘common knowledge’ inside the company, as to their accuracy, who knows?

    - Average comp at the studio was around £30k, or about $50k, so I’m told. There were about 300 of us when things fell over. In 2007 there were probably half that number of people. By the end, our salary bill was north of $10m, easily, possibly $15m.
    - This investment covered a long period. It’s not really accurate to think of spending $100m on APB. Christ knows it isn’t a $100m game.
    - MyWorld certainly wasn’t cheap, probably $20m sunk into it over the years in staff and other costs.
    - We used to have a studio in Korea that did semi-related MyWorld stuff, though nothing was ever released and then they were canned. That must have cost a few quid.
    - We spent a lot of money buying ourselves out of the shit publishing deal we had with Webzen. Don’t know how much. Millions I suspect.

    APB development was AT LEAST 5 years, maybe longer depending on your definition, but the first few years were basically spent pissing into the wind. Of course, it didn’t seem like that at the time, it was all ‘freedom from publisher interference’. Stuff started to get done around 2007 onwards, but things only really cranked up in the last year or two. So really, APB, for all it’s long development and lavish budgets, is a game that was mostly built in a couple of years. It SHOULD have only cost $10-$15m.

    I will say that anyone suggesting embezzlement is way wide of the mark. That $100m is easily accounted for. Back of a fag packet time:

    - $50m on salary over 5 years, for both MyWorld and APB.
    - Let’s say $10m on leasing 3 premises (Dundee, Boulder, Korea) and all the equipment over many years.
    - $10m on APB launch hardware, marketing (so shit it should have been free), operations costs and bandwidth.
    - $X million on buying out the Webzen deal.
    - $X million on purchasing data for MyWorld from the likes of Ordnance Survey (not cheap).

    I’m not saying it wasn’t SHEER FUCKING MADNESS, but I don’t think you need to invoke criminality to explain it, just plain old stupidity.

    • Kadayi says:

      Thanks for clarifying Ex- RTW. There’s been way too much of this lazy talk of APB alone costing $100 million in the press over the years.

  23. The Sombrero Kid says:

    if you can make a game like amnesia with 4 people in 2-3 years you never need more than 10 people, it’s which 10 people that’s the issue.

  24. mondomau says:

    “It’s large, comprehensive, filled with insider quotes, and worth a read.”

    Really? I think the link’s broken then, because all I could see was a bloated puff piece that effectively reeled off the well established sequence of events that marked the end of APB/RTW whilst neither exploring nor explaining what actually happened.
    And I wouldn’t describe a string of inane, cliched soundbites from a man who’s previous (and importantly future ) career rests on his ability to put a positive spin on everything his employer does, as ‘filled with insider quotes’.
    The article even manages to skip blithely past the repeated mentions of how free RTW was with the development funds (Pool table, Overtime, relocation package) without mentioning even once the many criticisms levelled at it for it’s terrible budget management. Not that I’m saying these perks were bad or the reason APB failed, but it’s kind of pertinent don’t you think?

    Sorry if I’m being a bit snarky, but I expected better, given the phrasing around the link. This reads more like a PR stunt than an article on one of the most controversial and high profile collapses in the industry.

    • Ace says:

      A mid to large-sized games company without a pool table isn’t a games company :)
      (Also PS3s and 360s, although most of those went mysteriously missing during the redundancies..)

      We also weren’t even close to the top of the pile in terms of employee perks, other companies just don’t get it aired across the web every other week.

      If you want to attract real talent you will need to pay relocation, this isn’t unique to RTW by any means.
      Overtime is a different story, and I’m not at all sure how common that is. Many people worked serious overtime long before it was paid and long after it stopped being paid but given the amount of work we needed to do and the time we had available to do it then paying overtime to existing staff was much more cost-efficient than hiring new staff / contractors.

  25. SlappyBag says:

    The best thing about that article is the “APB is out now on PC”. Lol.

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