LA Noire credits missing 130, developers accuse

Over 130 developers are claiming to have been omitted in LA Noire's end-game credits. Having been snubbed by Rockstar and Team Bondi, they have launched a revised credits list.

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Seven years and hundreds of developers later, LA Noire made it to store shelves, easily becoming one of the biggest games to come out of Australia. However, it appears that many contributors to the project have been omitted in the game's credits. In fact, over 130 people are claiming to have been snubbed by Sydney-based Team Bondi and the game's publisher, Rockstar.

A diverse group of people are seeking credit, from those that did work on the engine, to code and QA people, and more. One developer spoke to The Sydney Morning Herald, stating that he had to work 10-12 hours "almost every day and on weekends," and said that working for Team Bondi as--in similar fashion to other Rockstar studios--"inflexible and virtually praise-free." No wonder he, along with over a hundred others, feel particularly frustrated that "most of the people that worked on [the game] will never have proof of having worked there."

One theory that explains why some individuals were omitted from the game's closing credits is the fact that their work doesn't really appear in the final product. After such a lengthy development process, the project went under several revisions, undoubtedly rendering some work useless. "The nature of game development is that it's very iterative in the sense that obviously what comes out in the final product is built on a base of what happened at the very start," a source counter-argued. "Our work is in the game, we see it - we see our fingerprints on things we have done and finished and put in the game, but unfortunately we aren't credited."

For now, the developers have set up their own website on lanoirecredits.com that provides the "complete" list of individuals that worked on the game, as per "official" IGDA guidelines. These guidelines say that "any contractor or employee who has contributed to the production of a game for at least 30 days must be credited." However, the report notes that no studios have actually formally adopted these guidelines.

It's unlikely that other recognition in any official capacity will be offered, as some were told that "they would not be credited unless they stayed with the company until the game shipped." It may be unfair, but a spokesperson for the IGDA Melbourne told the Sydney newspaper that "it's important for individuals working in the industry to check their contracts before signing them so they are aware of how and where they will be credited for their work."

(via Develop)

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  • reply
    June 20, 2011 1:00 PM

    Andrew Yoon posted a new article, LA Noire credits missing 130, developers accuse.

    Over 130 developers are claiming to have been omitted in LA Noire's end-game credits. Having been snubbed by Rockstar and Team Bondi, they have launched a revised credits list.

    • reply
      June 20, 2011 1:09 PM

      I tried reading the credits for LA Noire once. I gave once I realised the the actors list practically required computerized sort function.

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      June 20, 2011 1:46 PM

      I guess we can add it to the list of Rock* releases where the workers complain about how shitty it is to work for them.

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      June 20, 2011 2:04 PM

      No "proof of ever having worked there?" That makes this sound so petty, like the only reason for working on a game is to get your name in the credits. You got paid didn't you? Oh, right, that won't be seen (ignored) by millions of people after they beat the game...

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        June 20, 2011 2:09 PM

        Yeah, it's not like careers are defined by previous bodies of work or anything...

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          June 20, 2011 2:10 PM

          its not like they can't prove they worked there

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            June 20, 2011 2:12 PM

            It's more than just that too. If I wasn't credited on a game I had worked on, I'd feel pretty unappreciated. So far I've had a screen credit on every project, so it's not like only special people get credits.

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              June 20, 2011 2:15 PM

              People are pretty petty with credits, I worked on a title for ~3 years and only got special thanks due to leaving before shipping.

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            June 20, 2011 2:57 PM

            And how exactly do you do that without a credit listing? If you are lucky you might be able to get a letter. If not, you are SOL.

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          June 20, 2011 6:35 PM

          If you need to prove that to a potential employer, you don't need to show them the credits. It'd be more meaningful to give them references, call up your supervisor or a producer or somebody that you worked with, the higher up the better. If you can't or won't do that, you probably didn't maintain a good relationship with the company, in which case I'm not surprised they left your name out of the credits on some technicality.

          And in this case, to come back and make a fuss about this without approaching Rockstar/Bondi first (or not being satisfied with what explanation they gave if they did) is just lame, IMO. Especially since they say some were given "Special Thanks," but that wasn't good enough, apparently.

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            June 20, 2011 10:10 PM

            Good luck on that if the producer is even still there. It's pretty standard procedure to use credits as a reference so I'm not sure what you are on about.

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              June 20, 2011 11:16 PM

              Or if the company even still exists. In films it's common for a company to be created specifically for the film and then folded immediately once they're finished.

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        June 20, 2011 2:12 PM

        when submitting resumes for jobs, you should have 2 shipped titled ... Oh, but you weren't in the credits? ... sucks for you

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          June 20, 2011 2:18 PM

          this :(

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          June 20, 2011 3:21 PM

          So when checking on potential employees, they play a game you supposedly worked on to the end so that they can check and make sure you're in the credits?

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            June 20, 2011 3:43 PM

            A) Many games have an option to view the credits right from the main title screen.
            B) That's hardly the only place the credits list would be available.
            C) You'd be surprised at the balls some people have who will claim to have worked on a project even though they had nothing at all to do with it. I've seen people outright steal other peoples' work and put it on their demo reels as if it was their own.

            I don't think it's unreasonable to assume that a game company can find out whether you've worked on a given title without having to play though the entire game first and I don't think it's unreasonable that they would check on it occasionally, especially for someone who's unknown.

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              June 20, 2011 5:27 PM

              It's so odd the games industry does this when they should just be able to contact the company. Now I suppose the company could go out of business but it's not like I get my name in any of the web sites I've coded.

              I'm not saying they are whiny at all by the way. It's more of an interesting thing when you work in other fields of development.

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            June 20, 2011 5:29 PM

            No, its just a word of mouth network. Mobygames and Game credits have become too unreliable. Calling HR for employment verification or LinkedIn based on people who may know them is pretty much the norm. Its a small industry, so it'd be tough to balls out lie and I bet you'd get caught pretty quickly by doing that.

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              June 20, 2011 6:39 PM

              Yeah, I'm only credited with 1 title on Mobygames, but I've worked directly on 9 titles now.

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            June 20, 2011 5:32 PM

            haha no they check mobygames or a PDF or something

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          June 20, 2011 5:38 PM

          that's one reason working at Telltale was sweet. I worked there for almost 2.5 years and I have my name in the credits of 16 games, though I should have been in the credits for episodes 2, 3 and 4 of Sam & Max season two (I'm only in episode 5 and I started work the day episode 1 was released). I also got into the credits of the first two episodes of season three even though I left before the first episode was released so I guess it evens out. either way I totally shipped sixteen games!

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          June 20, 2011 5:45 PM

          What really sucks is if you worked for a contract company doing assets for a game. Guess who gets the credit in the game? The contract company. You get nothing. I've worked on games, but with no credit except the source of the assets and contact info to confirm. :/

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        June 20, 2011 2:19 PM

        In the early days of video games, some studios/publishers didn't even credit the developers at all. Most Atari 2600 games were designed by small teams of one or two people, but only Atari's name would be on it in the end. It kind of sucks, really.

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        June 20, 2011 2:52 PM

        Even if you disregard the need for it when looking for jobs and such, there's also the pride in something you've helped create. Games are a creative product and it's quite nice to see your name scroll past in the credit list, being able to show it to friends and family. I would probably feel quite bummed if I wrote a book or painted a painting and wasn't allowed to have my name on them.

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          June 20, 2011 3:36 PM

          Yep. This is why it was disappointing to see the QA and Production staff taken out of the credits on several of the Vivendi titles we sold to other companies after the merger. That said, I have a lot of respect for THQ for leaving the Vivendi/Sierra credits in the finished version of 50 Cent: Blood on the Sand.

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            June 20, 2011 3:41 PM

            I wonder if Rebellion did any changes at all to Ground Control 2. My friend already confirmed that the manual (which contains the credits) is not modified (well, at least the original credits are there, might be extended).

            I should probably take a look into that. >_

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              June 20, 2011 4:47 PM

              I'm just customer support and we get our names in the credits of the games we release. Feels awesome to see that, and believe it or not, helps us take more pride in the support work we do.

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        June 20, 2011 5:02 PM

        it's actually pretty important for workers in the movie and game industry

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        June 21, 2011 5:40 AM

        You sound like the perfect candidate to work for Team Bondi. You're just the type of employee they want to have. Tell you what, we can both work there and on the games credits I will put my name down for the work you did. I know you won't mind.

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      June 20, 2011 2:16 PM

      What are credits? Oh yeah, those things we skip over at the end!

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        June 20, 2011 2:17 PM

        I actually watch them, but then I'm in the industry, I don't really expect other people to watch them.

        Unless I'm at a movie with other people, in which case we'll end up staying til the credits are over too.

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      June 20, 2011 3:00 PM

      Seems like some bullsh. I worked on a game for 4 months and got credit (internship)

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        June 20, 2011 3:47 PM

        we're still recovering from it!

        disclaimer: no not really

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      June 20, 2011 3:10 PM

      This is bullshit, Rockstar. Do what's right and credit the people whose backs are broken to make you assholes rich.

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      June 20, 2011 4:43 PM

      I actually declined a job at Turbine largely because the contract stipulated they could omit me from the credits if they felt like it and they absolutely would not remove it from the offer.

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        June 20, 2011 4:45 PM

        I wonder why it would matter to them

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          June 20, 2011 4:47 PM

          His real name is Hitler Babykiller

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          June 20, 2011 4:56 PM

          Conversation with their corporate lawyer went like this:

          Me: So you have the right to take my name off of the credits and say someone else did the work instead? Why would you possibly need that?
          Her: Oh, that's just intended for artists. We don't do that for programmers.
          Me: So you can take it out of the contract then.
          Her: I'm afraid I can't do that.
          Me: Who can?
          Her: It would be me, but I'm afraid I can't do that.
          Me: I'm afraid I can't take this job.

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            June 20, 2011 5:16 PM

            haha. It would have been hilarious if he said "one moment, consorting with my partner"

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            June 20, 2011 5:24 PM

            Good for you, deep down I bet you knew that they exercise that clause every single time it becomes available as a retention mechanism. This has been going on in the industry for years. When people leave right before a project ships or is in submission, higher-ups modify the credits as a message to the development team to stay on or else you'll have trouble finding work in the future.

            I've always managed to stay on board throughout the entirety of projects as network programmers tend to be the last ones laid off if a company is in turmoil. Many of us have seen people intentionally omitted, to the point where employees were told to strike someone's name from the credits. Game credits have been so mutilated since its inclusion that its a shame we'll never have a record of who worked on what.

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            June 20, 2011 5:28 PM

            Wow. What could possibly bring this about?

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            June 20, 2011 5:36 PM

            lovely. good to know that Turbine treats their artists like shit.

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            June 20, 2011 11:51 PM

            Oh, that's just intended for artists. We don't do that for programmers.

            Fuckin' artfags right!!

            :(

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            June 21, 2011 12:47 AM

            Lol wtf? Wise decision. If you spend years on something you want your damn name in the credits. Wtf Turbine.

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      June 20, 2011 4:54 PM

      Coming in November after class action suit: Complete credit sequence DLC.

      I wish this was funny.

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      June 20, 2011 5:38 PM

      man that sucks. I've worked at companies where despite getting laid off over a year before the game ships, I still get a 'special thanks' or 'additional art by' credit. There hasn't been a single game that I've been a part of where I didn't get a credit for.

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      June 20, 2011 8:37 PM

      I don't know about you, but I'm all for 20 minute end credit text rolls.

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      June 20, 2011 9:15 PM

      I am not surprised considering that project was kicked around and mired in development hell for years.

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      June 20, 2011 9:40 PM

      So wait, DNF can have a website where anyone could have tried to prove that they had a hand in the game and get themselves in the credits, yet 130 people who I'm fairly sure have had some influence in the games development (even if something was omitted it still has a influence on the game as a whole) can't even get a head nod.

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        June 20, 2011 9:55 PM

        It's really common.

        I'd wager almost all major games released in the last 10 years have had at least one person that leaves before the game is shipped that is not credited. It's just how it's done.

        If you are fired or laid off your chances of being in the credits really plummet.

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          June 21, 2011 6:09 AM

          I think I will be omitted from two EA games because I'm leaving the company before they ship. That's life, I guess.

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