the Toxicity of Long Hours

Mental degradation, inefficiencies and other ill effects from overwork.

For some reason there is a persistent myth in business, startup culture and the game industry, that longer hours = more production. The reality is quite the opposite. From anecdotal cases to scholarly research in psychology and even neurology, the conclusion is overwhelming: Long work hours have multiple negative effects. In fact, one of the first to discover this effect was Henry Ford, pioneer of the assembly line. In order to boost productivity he doubled assembly worker salaries, and cut shifts from nine hours to eight [Source].

The documented effects of overwork are numerous. They include increased mistakes, lower productivity, an increase in health issues and lower motivation [Source]. With this in mind, make sure you pace yourself for your next game development project. Working 30+ hours a week on your game while working a full-time job isn’t sustainable. Neither is putting in 60+ hour weeks on a regular basis. Plan your development accordingly, and narrow your scope instead of sacrificing your health and happiness to put out more content.