Blizzard Entertainment

  www.blizzard.com
  www.blizzard.com

Blizzard Entertainment Reviews

Updated July 29, 2014
Updated July 29, 2014
203 Reviews
3.6
203 Reviews
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Blizzard Entertainment President & CEO Mike Morhaime
Mike Morhaime
163 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Work environment, benefits, flexibility with school schedules for college students (in 19 reviews)

  • Laid back company, profit sharing, free games, company gifts, good benefits (in 11 reviews)


Cons
  • Pay is lower for customer service unless you count bonuses which are not guaranteed (in 15 reviews)

  • Substandard Industry pay in a high cost of living area (in 6 reviews)

More Highlights

25 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews

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  1. 2 people found this helpful  

    Blizzard - Dev Team

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Irvine, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Irvine, CA

    I have been working at Blizzard Entertainment full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Looks good on your resume. Fun environment. Most people love being there and working there. Lots of great amenities and perks on campus.

    Cons

    Not a lot of room to grow in your career; many people stuck in their role for many years without many chances to change or grow. Substandard pay, especially for the hours you work, and the high cost of living in Irvine. Very much a corporation.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2. 8 people found this helpful  

    A company that used to care about gamers.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at Blizzard Entertainment full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    The best thing about Blizzard were that people that actually created. I spent most of my time interacting with different game development teams and QA. For the most part the low and mid level personnel were extremely passionate and dedicated to making a quality product.

    Allowed QA to set a very high standard (at least when related to bugs and crashes).

    Cons

    I saw the downhill slide occur first hand during development of Starcraft II. People in a leadership role on that project and battle.net slowly eroded all of the good will Blizzard had built up over 15 years of previous battle.net functionality.

    Removing LAN plan, removing chat rooms, facebook integration - these are all things that no game anywhere wanted. The pushback internal on this was monstrous, yet it was wholly ignored. The results speak for themselves. Battle.net is an afterthought and SC2 is just another game that some people occasionally play.

    This behavior of making decisions contrary to the best interests of the gamer/customer for short term profits also bled into the Development of Diablo 3. The auction house was lauded internally as a complete disaster, yet higher ups pushed ahead and the disastrous results are all too clear. Some change has been made (2 years later) to close it down, but the damage done is obvious.

    In the late 90's and early 2000's the only games I played were Blizzard games. Warcraft 2, Starcraft, Diablo 2, Warcraft 3. I haven't played a Blizzard game regularly since 2010.

    The Blizzard that most of us knew, admired, and wanted to be a part of is long gone.

    If you work for the company now, you will work long hours with great people for substandard pay on products that you won't play. Work at your own risk.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Overtime is a way of life is archaic and backwards. Games can be made in a more efficient manner. The huge ego's that spout "design is king" and "that's how we've always done it" are routes to insolvency.

    The most important thing that needs to change for Blizzard to turn things around is to make the customers needs/wants the highest priority. Adding features/changes that improve the gamer's experience could set them on the right path.

    In my opinion the entire company needs to be gutted and reformed. All of the extraneous middle management and bloated overpaid senior staff need to go.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  3. 9 people found this helpful  

    Buddy system overload

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Austin, TX
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Austin, TX

    I worked at Blizzard Entertainment full-time

    Pros

    Working for Blizzard in Austin has very little perks. The staff is underpaid telling you the benifits and the managers lack most qualifications, but if you are best friends with a manager you are for sure going to move up fast.

    Cons

    Job harassment is constant, some managers lack any skill, buddy system is in full effect there, company is lost (they sent out a how much you really get paid document one year stating peoples benifits were $20k more than what they actually filed for taxes due to free games, in game items, and the holiday party. So people stopped going to the holiday party, stopped claiming the mounts and the company never gave another dime. Also the buddy system is super bad one day everyone is watching youtube while working the next 3 people are fired for watching youtube while working after 5 years there. Nothing is fair, no one is listens in HR and if you raise a concern they fire you for not being in line.

    I watched some super bad things and sat in some super bad meetings any other company would be sued for.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Take a long hard look at Austin. There is some super shady stuff going on there. Managers sleeping with employes, best friends working for best friends, and very little actual work being done except for the IGS and ATS staff.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
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  5. 9 people found this helpful  

    Great products, terrible politics

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Lead Programmer
    Former Employee - Lead Programmer

    I worked at Blizzard Entertainment full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Products are not released unless they are of high quality and are complete. Developers are treated as first class citizens. Looks very good on a resume.

    Cons

    Poor project management. Roughly half of all projects are canceled. Incapable of managing third parties. Back-stabbing politics. Design and creative leads have tremendous egos. Teams are expected to iterate on the same franchise ad infinitum. Technical challenges are dated, making it hard to learn current skills. QA and admin are treated as second-class citizens.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  6. 8 people found this helpful  

    Once upon a time it was happy, now it's just ever after

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Senior Manager in Irvine, CA
    Former Employee - Senior Manager in Irvine, CA

    I worked at Blizzard Entertainment full-time (more than 8 years)

    Pros

    The people themselves are great, the location (so long as you're on a dev team) is pretty good with semi-custom spaces, gym, food, etc.

    Cons

    Complete lack of accountability the higher one goes; there's exceptions and they end up carrying the entire organization across the board.

    Support teams are still an after thought; even QA (which is one of the better in the gaming industry) is more like a step child, Customer Support may be closer to a foster child that no one really wants around.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Start sharing the money a bit more and make sure that even low level employees can have lives. Constant "over time" just becomes a new schedule that's not sustainable and is a large part of what drives productivity down, not just in QA and Support but the dev teams, too.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  7. 7 people found this helpful  

    From Blizzard Blue to Blizzard Green

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Customer Support Representative Tier III in Irvine, CA
    Current Employee - Customer Support Representative Tier III in Irvine, CA

    I have been working at Blizzard Entertainment full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    At the start of my experience there in 2006 it was like walking into a a who new level on awesomeness, You got paid to help players in this amazing game. Granted there was a set amount of "tickets" you had to meet an hour, however the focus of the company was truly on giving each player that EPIC experience.

    You were able to move up in the company as fast or as slow as you wanted, the bonuses where amazing when you got them and the training just got better as the company evolved.

    Cons

    Sadly the company got to big for its own good and quickly went from quality to quantity. There was a time when it was a hush hush thing when "Operation Condor has left the roost" and when I left in 2011 it was a giving thing to mass tell thousands of players a day.

    It truly is a game of who you know and even worse when your bosses are BFFs with HR, The management never took the job seriously but had no issues whatsoever taking the glory when their team did well.

    Perks from the company are slowly draining, First 2 Blizzcons you would get 3 tickets for friends and family, then the next only two, then the next only one, then you got 3 tickets that you could "pay for". Frankly I am surprised that they didn't make the employees pay to go in and work it. The management would constantly lie to the staff about issues that were important, like the decision to completely remove Volt from the company days after they promised up and down it was there to stay.

    Being in Customer Service just made it that much worse, they would tell you that CS is the face of the company but it was really CS was the red headed step child of Blizzard that got the blame anytime something went wrong.

    The sad truth of it is it went to being Blizzard Blue for Pride in the company, to Blizzard Green and all about the greed for the money.

    I leave you with this.... Log into WoW, try to make a petition.... See if it even LETS YOU MAKE A PETITION... thats what Blizz CS has fallen too. Does that sounds like the most Epic experience ever to you?

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Learn the job all over again, when I left I am pretty sure my slacker of a lead still couldnt log into the main tools or even remembered how to take a petition. But hey why work when your team carries you :P

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  8. 4 people found this helpful  

    Company Lost its Heart

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Event Coordinator and ATSR in Austin, TX
    Former Employee - Event Coordinator and ATSR in Austin, TX

    I worked at Blizzard Entertainment full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    The novelty that its Blizzard. Clean, functional Gym in facility and nice bathrooms. Decent workspace and breakroom.

    Cons

    Company culture has shattered. A lot of outside influence in management with little to no understanding of company culture or even their own products. A lot of inappropriate behavior and unprofessional boundaries crossed by staff and management. Most management grandfathered into their position with no real skill. Little to no advancement opportunity int he company as they would have you believe--they hire mostly from outside. HR is an incompetent disaster and they recycle through HR reps every 30 to 60 days with exception of their manager. Has fraudulently filed misconduct in employee files and lost several battles with EEOC and TWC over this. "Managers" spend more time off than being actually inside the building. No one upholds their tenant "Lead Responsibly." Quality in the company's products have been slipping. Call centers have unrealistic requirements for tier advancement. Other specialized departments such as HR and Events will steal ideas for projects and programs. A tremendous amount of irresponsibility among the "leaders" int his company. An enormous disconnect between Irvine and Austin and an even worse one between corporate and their customer service teams.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Don't let your "managers" snow you on what's really going on. There has been some incredible talent walk in your doors who leave just as quickly when they could have been a boon to the company.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  9. 4 people found this helpful  

    Great games but terrible management.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Account and Technical Services Tier III in Austin, TX
    Former Employee - Account and Technical Services Tier III in Austin, TX

    I worked at Blizzard Entertainment full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Free games and swag, high tech work stations, medical benefits.

    Cons

    It's a call center for a video game company so you'll be dealing with whining kids and clueless parents on a daily basis. Very good friends were laid off unexpectedly. Very strict attendance policy (being sick or having car trouble will count against you.)

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Stop giving away free sodas / cake and increase wages.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  10. 5 people found this helpful  

    Great if you have little or no responsibility outside of your job

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - In-Game Support Representative in Austin, TX
    Former Employee - In-Game Support Representative in Austin, TX

    I worked at Blizzard Entertainment full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    *Multiple free copies of new titles at launch, and "first access" to newly released digital content

    *Very casual and laid-back culture

    *Frequent catering and events, huge Christmas party

    *Can be accommodating to sudden emergency needs on very rare occasions

    Cons

    *-ZERO- work/life balance - terrible work hours, terrible days off...often both at once. You can go months or even years without seeing your friends and family on a weekend day or weekday evening.

    *24/7 operation with blacked out major holidays (Christmas, Thanksgiving) - you will not get these off unless they fall on your regular day off, or you are lucky enough to get picked in the "lottery" (reserved only for mgmt and top 5% of performers only).

    *Constantly shifting (not to be confused with "evolving" which would suggest a positive) metric expectations means being left behind in Tier promotion multiple times per year

    *Punishment and penalization for using sick time (regardless of how much accrued sick time you have)

    *False expectations and promises - the idea that you can "move anywhere in the company from CS, including Development" is a pipe dream.

    *Hit or miss team management - many say they will help you on your career path goals, but will never lift a finger to assist.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Understand that while all your employees are gamer nerds, we are not all single living in our parents' basements. Some of us have families and responsibilities outside of work. The unforgivable hours and equally terrible days off applied to all shifts makes this job completely unacceptable for family life.

    Also consider another evaluation of your sick time accrual. Why are we penalized when we take sick days if we have the time to cover it? Most of us would still be employed if we weren't punished for getting sick.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11. 5 people found this helpful  

    I miss it, but not really.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Irvine, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Irvine, CA

    I worked at Blizzard Entertainment full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    The culture is to die for. You get to bring your dog to work!
    The benefits and bonuses are a definite plus
    It's like a dysfunctional family, which is cool
    They gave me a very nice severance package when they laid me off?

    Cons

    The middle man really needs to be cut out of this place. What do the producers even do?
    The people who have been here for 15+ years get crazy bonuses (they may have changed this after I left, I have no idea) and will basically just never be let go even if they're not the best at their job
    It's so obvious this place is suffering from small company syndrome and are still trying to cling onto that mentality, but it just doesn't work
    You've got to know someone to get a job that is worthwhile. It's all about who you know, not how great your work is.
    They expect Blizzard to be your life. During big projects I had 30 hour workdays and then 2 hours of sleep and back to another 30 hour workday. This happened constantly when there was a deadline to meet.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Don't micromanage, but don't under manage either. My department was like a swinging pendulum when it came to management so I never knew what to expect.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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