The Tale Of Gaming's Biggest D-Bag Studio
Quantic Dream is a video game company co-founded by David Cage and David Cage's ego. They were originally known for games featuring narrative choices so insane they seemed to be intentionally and successfully writing the dumbest story anyone could come up with. Take Indigo Prophecy, for example, where you play as a zombie who plays guitar and bangs, as he prevents an ancient Mayan Oracle from fighting against an evil AI over world domination. While narrative cohesion, or narrative … anything isn't their forte, they're pretty good when it comes to interactivity. Not in the sense that their games are fun or immersive, but in the sense that players have "interacted" with them so much that the ensuing glitches created something completely different and thus worth experiencing.
For the laughs, of course.
Then Cage evolved. His Quantic Dream went from embarrassing video game stories to real-life embarrassment. The great Sony hack of 2014 revealed that the company had created a fully nude and very detailed model of actor Elliot Page for Beyond: Two Souls, a game that didn't feature any nudity and apparently didn't notify any actor they were getting Rule 34-ed. That's pretty hard to explain … anyway, on a completely unrelated subject, Cage had previously that Beyond: Two Souls grew from thinking of pictures of Page.
While the above does seem like one the dumbest stories to come out of gaming development, it's actually a smarter plot than what you could find in any of Cage's games.
Then, in 2018, two French newspapers published pieces where 15 staff members accused Cage and (co-studio head) Guillaume de Fondaumière of promoting an ultra-toxic working environment. Now, normally this might mean probably indulging in the regular racist, sexist, and homophobic treatment you'd expect from a hellhole company, but this is Quantic goddamn Dream. Allegedly, they also Photoshopped employees to appear nude and/or to look like Nazis, then plastered those pictures all over the office. Cage disputed the accusations, calling it “a lie, pure and simple.”
Now, you shouldn't think a developer is a bad person when the only thing you know about him for sure is that he makes bad games. (Okay, maybe if his games are bad and created a nude CG model of an actor that didn't seem to consent to it.) Upon filing a defamation lawsuit against the newspapers responsible for publishing the testimonials, Cage took the stand. Not too long after, he threw a temper tantrum where he reportedly cried, stomped his feet, and even screamed, blaming "others" for interfering with his work and tainting his honor. Before things got hypothetically even worse when Fondaumière jumped in and asked whether it would be okay to lie … in court. So, yeah, good luck with that.
Top Image: Quantic Dream