Wednesday, April 13, 2016
While upon its release, Red Dead Redemption was held up as a critical and commercial success, less than a year prior to launch, things weren't looking quite so hopeful, according to court papers from former employee Leslie Benzies' $150 million lawsuit against Rockstar Games.
In fact, development on Red Dead Redemption was described as a "recurring nightmare" by Sam Houser in a 2009 email, leading Rockstar to draft in Benzies to help out. This has been used as evidence of Benzies' vital role in the Rockstar development process on various projects, most notably Red Dead Redemption.
"The ups and downs are VERY extreme. We have to fix this. Quickly. Help! I'm freaking!", another email from Sam Houser to Leslie Benzies reads. An email sent the next day said: "[RDR] is a (recurring) nightmare. But one I/we need to get out of. I have problems with the camera all over the place. So much so, that I can't be rational or specific about it. The darkness!!! PLEASE help me/us get RDR. I am a jabbering wreck right now. I need The Benz!'"
The lawsuit claims that thanks to Benzies' assistance, Red Dead Redemption was sorted out "within a few months", enabling Rockstar to begin showcasing the game to partners and platform holders like Sony and Microsoft.
"As Sam Houser himself recognised, the Houser brothers were incapable of completing large and complex games without Mr Benzies' oversight, management, and skill in taking unwieldy designs and making an understandable, cohesive, and enjoyable game," the lawsuit papers conclude.
Red Dead Redemption launched back in May 2010, shipping over 14 million copies. A sequel has been heavily rumoured for some time, but nothing solid or reliable has been forthcoming as yet.
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