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Dead Cells dev hopes to challenge exploitation with equal pay model

"If a project finds success, people are basically paid more in bonuses, and everyone is paid the absolute same way."

Dead Cells developer Motion Twin has been talking up its studio structure, which sees every single employee take home the same wage, irrespective of their position. 

The French studio describes itself as an "anarcho-syndical workers cooperative," which essentially means that as well as getting equal pay, every employee also has an equal say in how the company is managed. 

It's an interesting model, but in an interview with Kotaku, long-serving Dead Cells designer Sebastien Benard said the formula behind it is "super basic."

"If a project finds success, people are basically paid more in bonuses, and everyone is paid the absolute same way," he explained.

"The devs and the artists are paid the same amount of money, and people like me who have been here for 17 years are paid the same amount as people who were recruited last year."

Benard believes Motion Twin's pay and ownership model presents a direct challenge to some of the exploitative practices used at other companies, and serves to highlight how worn out old-school corporate structures are in general.

He suggests its impossible to claim that one person's contribution has more measurable impact on a game's success than that of somebody else, which is why the studio insists on equality across the board. 

You can learn more about the day-to-day running of Motion Twin by checking out the full Kotaku interview. It's well worth a read.

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