Rumour: Team Bondi has no friends left and so is running away to make dancing penguin cartoons

So how exactly do you follow a massive global success like L.A. Noire? Just how does one build upon such widespread critical kudos and commercial accomplishment? Well if rumours are to be believed, you find you've pissed everyone off to the point where no-one will work with you any more, then jack it all in to join a team that makes cartoons about dancing penguins.

Seems a sound business proposal to me, and surely exactly the sort of plan Team Bondi drafted up when going to the bank for that initial start-up loan all those years ago. The details of this tumbling ball of madness? Why read on, and I shall explain them further.

Word is that following sizeable allegations of working practices akin to those in a soot-crusted Victorian workhouse, not to mention a now rather public falling out with publisher Rockstar - which in this industry, let's face it, is not dissimilar to having the great Zeus himself as a personal bodyguard, before turning around, kicking him in the nuts, and telling him that lightning is for ponces - Team Bondi is finding it impossible to secure support for its next project, and so is selling out to the production company behind Happy Feet 2.

Sydney's Dr. D Studios - owned by weirdly eclectic director of Mad Max, Babe and Happy Feet, George Miller -  is currently spurting out a whole mess of fresh, steaming rumours, mainly relating to first-hand accounts from multiple employee sources that Team Bondi is hitting a major case of Kim Jong Il syndrome. necessitating its buy-out and the loss of its now rather tarnished name.

Several Team Bondi members - including studio head Brendan McNamara - have apparently been spotted visiting the studio, a sight which reportedly struck fear into the hearts and flushed tears to the eyes of several Dr. D employees. A bunch of them, you see, jumped ship from Bondi a while ago, and according to one source at the studio, did so "due to the abusive work conditions". Yikes, must have been like Darth Vader turning up at an Alderaan escapee's birthday party.

Word is that Team Bondi is going to be folded into Miller's KMM Studios, though it's current unclear in what capacity. Could be as part of the games division (which was previously working on a Mad Max game to tie into the now-postponed new film), could be as part of digital production studio Dr. D. Could well be a bit of both, given L.A. Noire's blending of the cinematic and the playable. What's slightly worrying though, is that Miller is reportedly interested in Team Bondi after being impressed with McNamara's approach to deadlines. There are rumours that Happy Feet 2 is currently hitting a fair bit of crunch itself, you see.

Hmmm, could be like Darth Vader storming the party with a whole legion of troopers and squashing the cake with a Star Destroyer then... We'll keep you posted as this one develops. Just don;t be surprised if the upcoming penguin film's title changes to Happye Feete 2e somewhere aling the line. Becayse, you know, jokes about Team Bondi not being able to spell 'noir', and stuff.

August 04, 2011


  • theguyinthecloset - August 16, 2011 10:28 a.m.

    @ the people who say noire is spelled right: it would be in french, as the color adjective, but in English a city (like other objects) has no gender hence a default masculin should be used and on top of that it's not really the color black but the genre "noir" which shouldn't be genderized (did I just create a word?) since it is itself a noun. Although "L.A. Noire" can be accepted if you consider the whole title French and not just using a borrowed word from French. In short, it's not spelled wrong but it's not the better option.
  • Dredgon - August 6, 2011 5:37 p.m.

    McNamara is a monster who makes me sick and makes me regret buying L.A. Noire just on principle. Maybe they'll station him with penguins all year round where his cold heart will match the cold temperatures!!!!!
  • Crypto140 - August 5, 2011 8:09 p.m.

    I don't know what I am more mad about, the fact there might not be an L.A. Noire 2, or the wait for Happy Feet 2.
  • quincytheodore - August 5, 2011 7:44 a.m.

    The view from top was so... brief...
  • cart00n - August 5, 2011 1:15 a.m.

    Actually, Happy Feet is one of my favorite movies...
  • Yeager1122 - August 4, 2011 11:16 p.m.

    Wow they really screwed the pooch on that one.
  • Defguru7777 - August 4, 2011 9:09 p.m.

    @space_cakes, Bloodstorm While I agree you should avoid milking a franchise (though I agree with Bloodstorm about Halo not really milking it), of all studios, Rockstar really handles their IPs well. Grand Theft Auto is wildly successful, but it isn't milked. Hell, it's been three years since GTA IV with no official word on the next GTA yet. What I'm saying is, if any studio won't milk an incredibly popular franchise, it's Rockstar.
  • CoryRX8 - August 4, 2011 6:55 p.m.

    "What's slightly worrying though, is that Miller is reportedly interested in Team Bondi after being impressed with McNamara's approach to deadlines. There are rumours that Happy Feet 2 is currently hitting a fair bit of crunch itself, you see." This really sickens me. McNamara should be lying in a gutter, friendless and penniless, and yet he's the one who's going to land on his feet without a scratch. Anyone who is impressed with his approach to deadlines, which really boils down to doing nothing and expecting everyone else to fix his problems, needs their head examined. "I don't have a solution, just work harder! Mush, mush!" Yup, that's really being a leader and taking the bull by the horns right there. Yeesh.
  • Pelico - August 4, 2011 6:29 p.m.

    Somebody beat me to it. But yes..."Noire" is correct. Didn't you ever take French in highschool? They actually teach that sort of stuff in the UK, don't they? I live in America, where education is shit upon, and I even knew that "noire" was right. Us ignorant amurrican folk don't learn no foreign-ass languages. You don't like it hurr in amurrica then you can git out. Other than that, great article. F**K TEAM BONDI! F**K VIDEOGAMES! F**K THE GOVERNMENT! F**K EARTH!
  • ZuzuPachulia - August 4, 2011 6:03 p.m.

    I hope you know I'm taking that photo and turning it into my wallpaper :P
  • rockbottom - August 4, 2011 4:15 p.m.

    Ha ha. Lightning IS for ponces!
  • Bloodstorm - August 4, 2011 4:08 p.m.

    @space_cakes, Let's not quite lump Bungie and Halo in with CoD. Bungie has made many technical leaps with every major installment of Halo (1-3 and Reach). Gameplay remains widely similar, but that is the reason people buy sequels, to continue to experience a gameplay mechanic or layout that they enjoy but in a newer setting or story arch. It is natural to want a sequel of something you enjoyed, or even just a spiritual successor to a game. Maybe not an L.A. Noire 2, but another, just as interesting detective/police drama with the same similar mechanics and storytelling that this title produced. It could have started a whole genre of police drama video games (still may have, but Bondi won't be leading the charge anymore it would seem). It is a shame that this group had to break up after releasing one of the most critically acclaimed video game's in recent history. I've been looking forward to getting my hands on L.A. Noire. Guess it shows, always treat your employees right. You are nothing without them.
  • space_cakes - August 4, 2011 3:51 p.m.

    @DannyMB Why does everything need to have a sequel? You can only keep doing the same thing so many times before it's stale and that time could be spent on developing new IPs. Most examples I can think of for franchises still creating sequels (ie. CoD, Halo, Pokemon) seem to take the existing engine, add a few graphical tweaks and gameplay changes, and bada-bing the public has a brand new game every year. I'd rather shell out for upgrades, not updates.
  • Athenacas - August 4, 2011 3:41 p.m.

    @KidKatana It's plural, but it is also a proper noun. "Noire" is correct to use.
  • ibeberger - August 4, 2011 3:27 p.m.

    As always an amazing photoshop job Mr. H
  • DannyMB - August 4, 2011 3:25 p.m.

    I hope Rockstar buys the L.A Noire IP then, i'll be gutted if theres no sequel.
  • Zepaw - August 4, 2011 3:22 p.m.

    Too often lately an innovative studio has folded after releasing their "big" game. This one stands out a bit as it is usually their parent company shutting them down not them breaking apart from internal trouble.
  • KidKatana - August 4, 2011 3:22 p.m.

    @ Athenacas While the term 'Los Angeles' refers to a single object, it's actually a plural, so maybe it should be 'LA Noires'.
  • mothbanquet - August 4, 2011 3:18 p.m.

    Such a shame that a developer capable of truly revolutionary ideas and game development techniques can't get something as basic as humane working conditions right. I used to dream of working in such an industry but news like this makes me glad I'm just enjoying the final product.
  • Athenacas - August 4, 2011 3:15 p.m.

    The feminine of "noir" is "noire," so Team Bondi spelled it correctly describing the feminine noun, L.A. or the city.

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