A new investigative report has come to light thanks to games journalist/YouTuber Jim Sterling accusing Rockstar Games of abuse and exploitation with many of these allegations involving former Vice President of Product Development, Jeronimo Barrera.
One former employee who wished to remain anonymous told Sterling that Barrera was more despised by employees than feared. Saying of Barrera:
“He was the Dark Vader of Rockstar. If the Housers were The Emperor, Barrera was the guy they sent to get shit done. There’s that scene in Return of the Jedi where Vader comes to the new Death Star and says ‘I’m here to kick ass and The Emperor is following.’
That’s what those meetings were. He’d kick the crap out of the studio to keep them productive and say ‘by the way, the Housers are coming in a month, this needs to work.'”
Another anonymous employee who worked on Max Payne 3 said Barrera would always yell and belittle employees on the project. Saying:
“The dude was petty and had personal vendettas against people all the time, they made work super uncomfortable.
He had anger issues- yelling, throwing things. Say or do one ‘wrong’ thing in front of him and you would get fired on the spot.
Laugh at him about something, you might get yelled at because he meant to be ‘serious’.”
It also doesn’t stop with Barrera. It also comes from Dan and Sam Houser as well. One employee told Jim Sterling that another employee was fired taking the initiative and attempting to improve the combat gameplay in one project. They claimed that the Housers were more interesting in cinematic experiences and interactive stories rather than the gameplay. Stating:
“They fired him for it. He was a good dev, an asset to the team. There’s very much a corrupt culture there, they’re firing people for trying to do their job.
Taking initiative, trying to improve things, being aware of faults, these are things that shouldn’t get you fired.
But he didn’t drink the Kool-Aid, [to him] Rockstar wasn’t the most amazing company that could do no wrong.”
When Sterling reached out to Rockstar, they did say they would be releasing an official statement and were told when The Jimquisition episode involving these allegations would be going live. Trust us when we say that all of the quotes above are just a small part of the overall accusations.
If you would like to view Sterling’s full video, you can view it down below: