BioWare Reviews

Updated July 27, 2015
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59 Employee Reviews

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  1. Helpful (2)

    Best time of my life

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Project Manager in Austin, TX
    Former Employee - Project Manager in Austin, TX
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at BioWare full-time

    Pros

    At the time I was there I got to work with one of the best teams I ever had worked with and had the most fun I've ever had. I remember saying to a team member "Where could we ever go that would be better than here?"

    Cons

    Some of the senior management team is not well respected or well liked, but remain in their jobs despite massive complaints. I wish Upper Management would listen more and clean out the ranks.

    Advice to Management

    Find the wink links and replace them - it'll keep the good people there.


  2. Great complete overview of the games industry as an entry level employee.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Platform QA Engineer in Austin, TX
    Former Employee - Platform QA Engineer in Austin, TX
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at BioWare full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Great People Good learning experience Can learn many aspects of business from here

    Cons

    At the time it was a very large studio with 500+ people. So there is a lot of bureaucracy to communicate with anyone not part of your team. The approval processes and number of meetings can occasionally be disruptive to work flow.


  3. Great company with great values.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Environment Artist in Austin, TX
    Former Employee - Environment Artist in Austin, TX
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at BioWare full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Great IPs to work with, lots of emphasis on personal input, management is open to listening to your ideas and is generally concerned with your work satisfaction. There was a really great emphasis on work/life balance as well.

    Cons

    I don't have too many cons to report. I had a great experience during my tenure at the studio.

    Advice to Management

    I really admire the company's core values. Keep adhering to them and you'll have a satisfied and enthusiastic team.


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  5. Helpful (2)

    Unique experience on a cool product

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Associate Technical Artist in Austin, TX
    Former Employee - Associate Technical Artist in Austin, TX
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at BioWare full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Work with people very passionate about what they do. Great perks, excellent benefits Challenging work environment

    Cons

    Unstable future, your job is one failure away from being removed.

    Advice to Management

    Be more open to flexibility and listen to your employees as they give feedback. Sometimes ideas are just bad.


  6. Helpful (5)

    A stimulating company that focuses on quality of life over speed of production.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Associate Designer in Austin, TX
    Former Employee - Associate Designer in Austin, TX
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at BioWare full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Food, comfort, and happy people. BioWare is a comfortable place to work and a happy environment. You must find a healthy place in the corporate structure where creativity is allowed to thrive and corporate needs are sheltered by strong leads. There are some really creative people at BioWare, and it is an absolutely amazing environment to wet one's feet or season one's skills.

    Cons

    The large corporate mogul of EA opens doors but closes independent thought. Only on the micro-level may creativity thrive, for revolutionary ideas that can be iterated on rapidly in a small company setting turn into months-long trudge of certification, documentation, and stagnation. Long "assembly-line" like production pipelines turn great ideas into watered-down results, quashing the desire for creativity into production, as the outcome of both becomes identical.

    Advice to Management

    Decrease employee turnover to perfect their skills instead of firing and re-hiring temporary workers. Eliminate work-flow pipeline issues by seasoning your people and unifying your technology. It should not take 6 months for a new designer to learn the ropes, and another 6 to master them. That's 4 and 8 months too long, where employees are gratuitously unproductive in comparison to seasoned veterans. On top of that, the forced turnover rate eliminates many of the seasoned workers before they can share their wealth of accumulated knowledge, leading to a downward spiral of production that can only end in one way.


  7. Helpful (1)

    It is truly a learning experience

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Austin, TX
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Austin, TX
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I have been working at BioWare full-time

    Pros

    You can learn a lot about the game industry.

    Cons

    The game industry is based on people's extra income and as that shrinks, so does the studio.

    Advice to Management

    In order to be a designer you need to play the games you design.


  8. Helpful (1)

    Fun environment with interesting tech

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Lead Engineer in Austin, TX
    Current Employee - Lead Engineer in Austin, TX
    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at BioWare full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    * Lots of room for learning new teach and solving problems * Smart people * Crunch periods are not that long

    Cons

    * Management communication leaves lots to be desired * Lots of "Tech Managers". Basically strong tech people with crappy management skills * Downsized recently, more work spread to few individuals

    Advice to Management

    Learn to communicate with employees better. Secrecy is a killer


  9. Helpful (6)

    Management needs to get their act together + EA = Not Good

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Austin, TX
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Austin, TX
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at BioWare full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Relaxed atmosphere, got to work with some brilliant people

    Cons

    Really makes me sad to see what's happened to this company. Only worked there for a short time before the layoffs started, but long enough to see what the problems are. Marketing is driving the business into the ground, making initiatives that make no sense. It's as if they don't realize their audience is gamers, and that's a fail right there. Management simply doesn't listen to the brilliant folks there. I don't know how many times I walked from a meeting shaking my head in complete confusion as to why rational common sense ideas were thrown out in favor of what the marketing head thought was best. I don't believe all game companies are run like this, even BioWare's other branches. But when you have EA looming over your shoulder insisting to see immediate increases in subscriber numbers yet cutting funding in all departments, coupled with horrible management, all the while listening to the marketing department instead of your core audience... yeah. You can see where that's going.

    Advice to Management

    Listen to the very vocal, and very talented, people who AREN'T management. Take their ideas to heart and realize that not only are they your workers, but they also are your audience. Realize marketing has its place, but its place is NOT in making decisions that shape the company.


  10. Helpful (8)

    Led on by false promises of a full-time position

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - QA Analyst in Austin, TX
    Former Employee - QA Analyst in Austin, TX
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Free breakfast catering and ice cream stocked weekly. Generally lax work environment. Decent pay. Hours aren't as overburdening as most other QA positions. Immediate supervisors were good people who respected the team.

    Cons

    Employs a ridiculous amount of contractors with almost no capability for advancement into full-time positions as the company is too stingy to pay for benefits. Regardless, employees are promised a chance of getting full-time if they work hard enough, which is a blatant lie: even my friend who was one of the most important tech staff in the studio, who often outpaced his full-time coworkers, was not brought on after the end of his contract. Most of the full-time staff looks down on the contractors and sometimes even takes credit for their work. Senior management almost never communicates or even acknowledges contract staff. Very cloak-and-dagger about unannounced information, to the point of management outright threatening employees that they would intentionally ruin their career in the gaming industry if they said leaked a word of new content. Horrible software and often dysfunctional hardware supported. Benefits are barely worth mentioning.

    Advice to Management

    Stop cycling out contractors and leading them on, hire internally for full-time positions. Actually acknowledge your contract staff and realize how important more full-time staff are for long-term project quality.


  11. Helpful (6)

    You only move ahead if you have a friendship or past working relationship with the "choice makers".

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Austin, TX
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Austin, TX
    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    A lot going on day to day. A lot of work but mostly because the servers keep getting screwed up.

    Cons

    - Lack of management - Poor communication from team leads - Constant changes in development plans without warning - Management placed in some groups do not have the required skills to make their teams successful - No interaction with management unless you initiate it. - You must have a previous connection with someone on the inside in order to solidify your position. - A lot of egos and attitude from the creative higher-ups like they're God's gift to the company.

    Advice to Management

    - Learn the strengths of your employees - Talk to them and discover what drives their productivity - Be a mentor and develop them instead of making them "factory" workers.



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