Nicalis has worked on a number of titles for Nintendo platforms over the years, starting with the Wii and moving all the way up to the Switch. The company is certainly one of the bigger indie publishers on Switch today, and they've worked with a number of developers to bring experiences to the platform. Unfortunately, it seems that many who worked with Nicalis, both inside the company and through partners, have experienced some rather unpleasant circumstances.
Kotaku has put together a report on the inner-workings of Nicalis, specifically coming from Tyrone Rodriguez, the company's founder and president. Under cover of anonymity, a number of former employees have accused Rodriguez of mental abuse and mistreatment. There have also been claims of Rodriguez using racist terms and phrases on numerous occasions. These claims are backed up by Skype logs of conversations showing Rodriguez using extremely distasteful language.
There have also been allegations of Nicalis ghosting devs and pubs during negotiations for publishing. Apparently, a number of
teams were looking to work with Nicalis to get their games out on various platforms, but those deals never came to be due to Nicalis going radio silent for weeks, if not months.
A Nicalis spokesperson has offered up one response to all the allegations, and have said that they won't be commenting further on the matter. You can see that statement below.
Developing and publishing games is a dream for the staff of nearly 20 that work at Nicalis, Inc. Some of our team have been with the company almost a decade and we work hard to create an environment where we treat our team members with respect. They are what make the company.
We do not condone abusive workplace environments or discrimination and have people from all walks of life. We hope for the continued success of our internal team and our external developers.
Regarding the companies under mutual NDA with Nicalis, Devolver (publisher of Enter the Gungeon) and The Game Bakers (developer of Furi), we can only comment that we do not have any signed publishing agreements with them and never have.
Kotaku's report on the matter goes into much greater detail on the situation. You can read the full feature here.