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Checkpoint Intimates is a weekly podcast where two members of the team go one-on-one on a topic that they both feel strongly about, talking in a more deeper and, yes, intimate context. This week, Elliot and Edith are on board to discuss “crunch culture” and what that means for video game developers. Crunch time for game development refers to when there are deadlines during game creation due to budgetary restraints or release dates, and what that often means is development teams have to spend additional long hours finishing off their product. This can mean additional pressure and expectations, causing side effects such as mental health and physical health repercussions, not seeing family, destroying marriages and overworked & underpaid employees. We talk about how it is so widespread, why it exists and why it can be so damaging, with real world examples of the impacts it can cause on a person. When a game is due out, publishers and fans are desperate to play it… but what does that mean for those who are working on it? When does crunch culture go too far?