As reported by Vandal, some former employees who worked on the recently released Metroid Dread have been excluded from the game's credits due to working on the project for less than 25% of its development time.
Metroid Dread currently sits at an 88 on OpenCritic, making it one of the best reviewed games of 2021. With reports that it's well on its way to being the best selling Metroid game of all time, Nintendo and developers MercuryStream have to be pretty happy.
Unfortunately, as pointed out 3D Artist Roberto Mejias on Linkedin, some developers who worked on the game are not being credited. Since, others who worked on the game have also confirmed their work on Metroid Dread without receiving credit.
In a statement to Vandal, MercuryStream stated that it is company policy to only credit those who work on a game for more than 25% of its development cycle. In Metroid Dread's case, that is about a year. With game developers using contractors for a lot of development, AAA games could have dozens or hundreds of people that don't meet that criteria, despite work contributed to the game.
Why do Metroid Dread Credits Matter?
The crux of why credits matter is that they are an official record of sorts of who worked on a game, and since work for most game developers is moving from game to game, company to company, having your name in the credits goes a long way on a resume. Something we all skip or treat as a passing glance does have real-world benefits for those that work on the games we love. Undoubtedly, everyone whose work contributed to the game should be credited.
Metroid Dread is not the first game, nor will it be the last, to exclude people from the credits. This is a longstanding issue, which you can read more about in this excellent Kotaku article here.