Machine Zone
4.1 of 5 11 reviews
www.machinezone.com Palo Alto, CA 50 to 149 Employees

Machine Zone Reviews in Palo Alto, CA

Updated Feb 6, 2014
All Employees Current Employees Only

3.7 7 reviews

                             

67% Approve of the CEO

Machine Zone CEO Gabriel Leydon

Gabriel Leydon

(3 ratings)

71% of employees recommend this company to a friend
7 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews
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4 people found this helpful  

Machine Zone has a lot of ambition but requires complete commitment.

Backend Engineer (Former Employee)
Palo Alto, CA

I worked at Machine Zone full-time for less than a year

ProsThe game and tech are ambitious and challenging. The people I worked with were knowledgable and competent. The compensation and benefits were excellent. They actually paid the bonuses they promised during the interview. They did at least try to work with me on the work/home balance issues.

ConsThe company is centered around people who are completely committed to the success of the company over anything else. Since so many of them spend so much time at work, the company makes efforts to provide small social opportunities daily and large ones reasonably frequently. This is a great environment, if you want to make friends at work and combine your social and professional lives. If you have a preexisting social or family life that is important to you or you just aren't very social, then the environment can feel isolating instead of inviting, like being a stranger in a large family's home.

They will try to work with you on the work/home balance issues, but the culture is still centered around presence. Management tends to rely on people they can walk up to and have a conversation with; they haven't really embraced chat or teleconferencing. If you cannot be in the office every day when the important decisions are happening, you lose effectiveness very quickly.

Also, operational and development responsibilities tend to fall in the same role for a component. Pretty much every engineer is effectively on call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Advice to Senior ManagementStart to split operational and development responsibilities and rotate people through them so that the same people are not expected to be available 100% of the time.

Allow space in the culture for people who want a separate social and professional life. Opting out of a social event should not automatically cause "Why aren't you doing...?" questions from everyone.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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1 person found this helpful  

There Is Only One Speed And It's Go

Software Engineer (Current Employee)
Palo Alto, CA

I have been working at Machine Zone full-time for more than a year

ProsVery well funded and understands free to play and how to obtain user's transactions. They compensate workers very well and are located in a very cool palo alto area. If you live in the San Jose area, the commute isn't bad at all.

ConsVery depressing work environment. Crunch time hasn't ended in over a year and working normal hours is like wearing a scarlet letter on your back.

Advice to Senior ManagementThe people who work for you are not machines. We work to live. Respect them and they will work just as hard for you without any force or employment threats.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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The company has potential

Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)
Palo Alto, CA

I worked at Machine Zone

ProsFriendly atmosphere and some awesome people work there . The company is located in Palo Alto and for some people the commute is a deal breaker, but overall i'd say it is worth the trip.

ConsEven though the company is engineer oriented they should definitely get an art director . Otherwise lack of clear artistic vision will drive them to being neglected on the market even with the best engineering tricks.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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This Company Cares!

Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)
Palo Alto, CA

I have been working at Machine Zone full-time for more than a year

ProsMachine Zone is by far the best place I've worked for, in my career! I have been in the gaming industry for 8 years and have seen a lot of mismanagement, poor decisions and even lies. Machine Zone has always put their best foot forward in taking care of their employees. I've seen career growth for myself and others and the work is meaningful. From what I've experienced they care about their employees as much as the games they develop. Executive Team/Management is visible, approachable and hard working. Very collaborative environment.

ConsSmaller company, which is not for everyone.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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1 person found this helpful  

Dream Job

IT & Facilities Manager (Current Employee)
Palo Alto, CA

I have been working at Machine Zone full-time for less than a year

ProsSurrounded by talented individuals who are rock stars of their field. It really is the cream of the crop around here.

ConsIts definitely a fast paced environment, and not for the weak willed. The only con would be if you are not a dedicated individual who like to work hard and reap the benefits of that work.

Advice to Senior ManagementKeep up the amazing work.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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7 people found this helpful  

Great vision, no idea how to get there

Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)
Palo Alto, CA

I worked at Machine Zone full-time for less than a year

ProsThey know how to make money, good location in Palo Alto, offices are new and they are open to suggestions in building products and doing business. Despite their faults, the people as individuals are very intelligent. Financially, Machine Zone is making attempts to do the right things to avoid going down the failed game start up path that so many fall into.

ConsWorking at Machine Zone is what I imagine a sweat shop to be like. If you have any thoughts on an outside life I would abandon it before accepting a position there. Working hours are from 11am to 10pm and some weekends. Career development is non-existent as everyone is pegged into roles for the "now" rather than the future. The CTO is very intelligent but has a hard time making decisions as he's also in the dark with company direction. He plans his organizational goals around building games that are dead in the mind of the CEO. Needless to say, conflicts between founders affects the entire organization.

Advice to Senior ManagementIf you want to be a great game company then create original IP. Producing re-skins of other company's games and adding chat to it doesn't make a player more immersed if the game play and graphics are horrible. CEO lacks professionalism and his predictable rants are merely an uninspiring blame game. For all the intelligence and potential with the company, it's leadership is far from being unified and causes the company to react towards problems rather than work together to understand and solve them.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

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3 people found this helpful  

Challenging and rewarding, Machine Zone is a great place to build a career

Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)
Palo Alto, CA

I have been working at Machine Zone full-time for less than a year

ProsThe flat organization makes it very easy for employees to make an impact every day. I love coming to work at a place that is pushing the envelope on game design and WILL be the gold standard of not just mobile gaming, but the game industry in general.

ConsBeing innovative takes hard work and some sacrifice. Working here is not for the timid or those not interested in putting in the time to win.

Advice to Senior ManagementTry to work on getting the hours to those of a normal company.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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Machine Zone – Why Work for Us?

Based in Palo Alto, Calif., Machine Zone, Inc. (formerly known as Addmired, Inc.) is focused on creating the most engaging free-to-play mobile social games in the world. Launched in 2008 with Y Combinator, Machine Zone… Full Overview

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Glassdoor is your free inside look at Machine Zone reviews and ratings in Palo Alto, CA — including employee satisfaction and approval rating for Machine Zone CEO Gabriel Leydon. All 7 reviews posted anonymously by Machine Zone employees.