Though we’ve streamed some Telltale games with interactive/multiplayer elements, we seldom cover the studio, but we figure you’ll forgive us today: At the tail end of last week, Telltale Games shocked much of the industry when it laid off as many as 250 employees, reportedly all without severance. I dunno about you, but my Twitter feed has been justifiably brimming with anger over the situation and the way the employees have been treated, particularly given Telltale’s follow-up yesterday that says it’s working with partners to finish another pair of episodes of the Walking Dead after telling 250 people it was out of dough to pay their fair severance, too bad so sad. That’s… gall, even if reports that Telltale was rocked by an investor pullout are true.
When we covered it over the weekend, several commenters wondered how in the world any of this is legal. It looks as if we’re going to find out: One of the affected employees has brought a class-action lawsuit against Telltale under the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act. The law requires companies with 100+ full-timers to give 60 days of notice prior to major layoffs. And yes, the magnitude of these layoffs appears to meet both the federal criteria and California’s far stricter requirements.
As Polygon reports, the suit filed by plaintiff Vernie Roberts Jr. seeks the requisite 60 days of wages and benefits to which he and the other former Telltale employees are entitled under the law.