Again, this isn't so much a secret as a good piece of information to know. I know quite a few people know this but for those who don't it helps you get a better picture of what's going on.
For years now Development teams have been getting bigger and bigger, and the reason for this is they want to be able to release games quicker so they can get to market and capitalize as soon as possible. What happens is the higher-ups decide to hire a big staff for a game (usually AAA games but it happens in varying degrees to all Developer companies) to get as much done as possible.
Doing this over-does the budget for employees and makes games cost much more to develop. The way they offset that is Two (2) Ways:
1) They hire a lot of Developers as simply "Contractors" instead of Full-Time Employees The reason for this is because they don't have to pay extra for Medical Insurance or pay into Social Security/Medicare/etc. taxes since the "Employee" is technically Self-Employed, meaning the worker has to pay more taxes with no benefits.
2) When the game is finally finished, the higher-ups cancel the contracts with these "Employees" so that any sales they get with the game won't be negatively affected by additional payroll, thus improving the profit margins.
As I said, it's not a huge secret nor something that's a new idea, but as I said before the Gaming Industry is MY industry and I love it so that is what I focus on.