Pandasaurus, company behind Dinosaur Island, Machi Koro, and Persona 5 Royal card game made in collaboration with Atlus, have come under fire for failings, a work environment, and late pay.
Speaking to Icebreaker, seven former workers, contract- and freelance workers and designers-concepts posed numerous problems with the environment in Pandasaurus. One of the key problems they highlighted was that they would rarely be paid on time, something that was handled by Nathan McNair.
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He supposedly respond with several excuses in a casual manner. It’s been a long weekend. I forgot to press the button. Oh, I was out of town. That’s your responsibility to handle it, says a worker. “This is the only place I had ever worked where I didn’t get paid by the time.” Other anonymous employees affirmed that casual attitude towards missing payments was supported by another employee.
The structure of the company itself, out of salary, has been infuriated by these ex-contractors. They claim that every decision must be voted by the co-owners, married couple Molly Wardlaw and McNair, and it made it feel more like a dictatorship. Sometimes the co-owners would not approve decisions for weeks and months, despite a period of development.
It presumably meant that staff didn’t meet deadlines, something the co-owners would get annoyed at. This led to a situation where the staff had reported “the constant level of anxiety and stress.” And this structure supposedly led to an effective resuscitation of the design team, to respect those deadlines.
“For the public, Nathan and Molly would be like: ‘No, don’t do all night’s. But the success of the company depends on the opportunity of this game. There was very little pressure on them,” one worker claimed.
Staff allegedly told McNair that other employees were being overworked and that he should need to slow down, which he agreed with, although he was allegedly “indeedful”. That meant almost every project had a crunch.
Pandasaurus responded to these claims, denying any claim of toxic work environment.