Skull Island: Rise of Kong was reportedly developed in just a single year, according to a report by The Verge. The publication was able to get in touch with members of the development team at studio IguanaBee, which developed Skull Island: Rise of Kong.
One of the developers has revealed that work on the game started back in June 2022, and was set to go on until June 2, 2023.
“The development process of this game was started in June of last year and it was aimed to end on June 2nd this year,” said the developer, who remains anonymous. “So one year development process.”
A former developer from IguanaBee stated that this is par for the course for working with publisher GameMill. The publisher reportedly has a reputation for contracting studios to develop games based on major IPs in short periods of time for quick releases.
“It was very common for us not to be provided with all the information about the project,” said the former developer. “Which was quite frustrating when working because we had to improvise with the limited information we had on hand.”
Going by the developers that spoke to The Verge, this seems to also come down to the fact that IguanaBee as a studio was trapped in a never-ending cycle of having to develop games on a contractual basis with publishers in order to keep the studio open.
It is worth noting that, typically, a game can take anywhere from a year to half a decade to develop, depending on the scope of the game and the size of the studio. Even indie studios tend to typically need longer than a single year to develop games for modern systems. Short single-year turnaround time for game development was much more common in the past, when gaming platforms were more technically limited.
Other developers working at the studio have stated that IguanaBee tends to take on these contracts in order to be able to make games it actually wants to make.
“To be honest, they seemed much more motivated and enthusiastic than the rest of the team working for GameMill. Who knows why,” said the former developer in reference to the team at the studio working on puzzle platformer What Lies in the Multiverse.
“It’s a love/hate relationship because they are the ones who accept or give the projects and Iguanabee doesn’t have the means to develop almost anything on its own because well, money,” said the first anonymous developer, who also goes on to talk about the short deadline needing quite a bit of crunch.
“The crunch was really set in motion in February,” said the developer. “I was on automatic pilot by the end of February because all hope was lost.”
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