Fntastic has issued an additional comment regarding volunteers in their ranks (via Eurogamer). It shows that Currently the company is being selflessly helped by 40 people from different regions of the world. They help with testing games in the early stages of production as well as translation and community moderation.
The statement also mentions that in the past the studio used the services of professional translation companies, but their work was not satisfactory. Volunteers, on the other hand, proved to be excellent in this role and corrected all the errors present in Propnight. The fact that these people didn't have to be paid was also a big advantage.
Happy at least some of the volunteers can find permanent employment with the company. As an example, the devs mention a fan from the Netherlands was recently asked to become a "full-time volunteer", or simply an employee of Fntastic. There are expected to be more such cases over time.
- It turns out that the creators of The Day Before are benefiting from the work of volunteers.
- They are said to work on translations and moderation, among other things.
- In return, they receive game codes and certificates.
If we were to gauge player expectations based on wish lists on Steam, then The Day Before would be the most anticipated production in the world. Indeed, the game by Fntastic enjoys a huge interest and takes the first place in the aforementioned ranking.
However, quite disturbing information has appeared in the network, which may influence your opinion on the developers or, in the worst case, on the game's condition itself. It turns out that the game is worked on by volunteers who do not receive payment for it.
We are all volunteers
Fantastic's site writes that all employees of the studio are volunteers. The whole company culture is supposed to be based on the idea of volunteering.
However, developers are divided into two groups. The first are full-time volunteers who receive a fixed salary for their work. How does this differ from regular work then? Hard to say.
The second group is part-time volunteers. They are supposed to deal with less crucial tasks such as translations or moderation. In return they can count on "cool rewards" such as "certificates of participation" and "game codes". They will also be able to add this experience to their resume.
The company was asked about the details of this work model by Eurogamer. Fntastic shared responded with statement in which we can read about the company's values.
"The company's values are built upon the idea of volunteering which means that every person who works or volunteers here is doing that willingly, acts with dedication, and enthusiasm, and supports the team by any means possible.
We have many people around the world who are helping us out in many ways, they are part-time volunteers. They help with any projects we have. While full-time volunteers are the employees of the company."
We can only hope that in time the company doesn't say that the best compensation for work are the friends the employees have made along the way.
At the same time, it is worth wondering whether the fact that Fntastic is trying to save money by using free labor will not affect the quality of The Day Before.
It is worth mentioning that Fntastic is another Russian studio that fled its country. The company was originally founded in Yakutia. However, judging by the studio's account on LinkedIn, the developers have moved to Singapore and from there they continue working on The Day Before.