Rockstar, Team Bondi paths split — report

LA Noire developer Team Bondi suddenly finds itself without a publisher.

After accusations of studio head Brendan McNamara’s unbearable management style came to light, a new report based on a number of leaked emails on gi.biz alleges that Rockstar will not be involved in the Aussie studio’s next project, and that Team Bondi is in fact on the lookout for a new publisher.

“I’ve heard a lot about Rockstar’s disdain for Team Bondi, and it has been made quite clear that they will not publish Team Bondi’s next game,” claims a source in the report. “Team Bondi is trying to find another publisher for its next title but their relationship with Rockstar has been badly damaged. Brendan treats LA Noire like a success due to his vision but I think Rockstar are the ones who saved the project.

“They continued to sink money into LA Noire, and their marketing was fantastic. Without their continued support, Team Bondi would have gone under several years ago.”

LA Noire is said to have been finished only after Rockstar intervened and “overruled many of the insane decisions made by Team Bondi management,” while producers from Rockstar were “increasingly influential over the last two years of the game’s development.”

“At a lower level, Rockstar also pitched in with programmers, animators, artists, QA, etc. Part of the conflict between Team Bondi and Rockstar was due to Rockstar’s frustration with Team Bondi’s direction, and eventually Team Bondi’s management in turn resented Rockstar for taking lots of creative control.”

Team Bondi was once seen as a studio the famed GTA creator wanted to turn into “something like Rockstar Sydney.” However, “the more they worked with Team Bondi management, the more they came to understand that this was a terrible idea,” the source says.

Despite the troubles and drama, LA Noire is a success, even becoming the fastest-selling new intellectual property of all time in the UK.

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