Read... République: Episode 1 Postmortem
"Camouflaj began as a very crunch-heavy studio. Leading up to our Kickstarter debut, we worked days, nights and almost every weekend for four months. We pulled all-nighters, slept in the office, and quickly ran ourselves into the ground. Coming out of GDC 2012, many team members vowed to never crunch again--they were exhausted and began to cite indie developers’ GDC quotes, 'If you’re crunching, you’re doing it wrong.' At that time, I agreed. We were ruining peoples’ lives with crunch, so Camouflaj was going to help blaze a trail and prove that you can ship a high quality independent game without imposing crazy hours."
So you've left your comfortable job at an established game developer, recruited twenty or so like-minded individuals, and brought in half a million on Kickstarter. Now all you have to do is pull that vision of fresh, fun, narratively courageous mobile gaming that enchanted 11,000 backers from your head and stick it on an iPad. Ryan Payton, formerly of 343 Industries and Kojima Productions, tells us how it happened for Republique and Camouflaj in an big, honest postmortem for Gamasutra.
It wouldn't have been an easy task for the big-time studios of Payton's past, and it certainly wasn't easy for his new team. Hearing how his views on issues like crunch--that is, working long hours of overtime--and a flat creative structure shifted in response to practical concerns is interesting. Nobody, least of all Payton, is saying he did it perfectly, but it's valuable information for game creators and consumers alike.