Riot Games Reviews

Updated August 2, 2015
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Riot Games CEO Brandon Beck
Brandon Beck
167 Ratings

Pros
  • Everyone here is passionate about League of Legends, which I thought was really cool (in 22 reviews)

  • Work life balance is encouraged; they didn't want me to be stressed out so they made sure I played games and took breaks (in 9 reviews)

Cons
  • My only negative is the whole work-life balance issue (in 30 reviews)

  • Compensation for some roles is abysmal for the cost of living in Santa Monica (in 16 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

200 Employee Reviews

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  1. Featured Review

    Helpful (68)

    Strong on Culture and Teamwork. Finding its Way as it Matures

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

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

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    I'm not sure how to break this down into a simple list of pros and cons. Everything about Riot is dual-edged and requires consistent grounding to maintain realistic perspectives. If I could summarize, Rioters are given great power. "And with great power comes great responsibility." Riot believes in its cultural manifesto. Culture drives everything, but it's not as simple as reading and consenting to the manifesto. Riot culture is a mirror through which Rioters reflect on whether we're winning or losing both as a company and as individuals, and it requires ongoing introspection even after years of working here. Riot has lots of perks. Free meals, parties, international trips, lots of swag, relaxed work environment, flexible hours, unlimited PTO, time allotted to play games, playfund (they will pay for you to buy games), etc. Riot takes good care of its employees and strives to create a work environment that is fun and challenging. Many on the outside accidentally mistake this for culture. It isn't. Culture is the set of shared values we can agree upon as being important to us and describing who we aspire to be. During the interview process, candidates are screened not only on their raw qualifications (what have they accomplished, can they perform the job function), but on whether they demonstrate clear alignment with Riot's cultural values. Yearly 360-Reviews break feedback down into categories aligned with the cultural manifesto. A large portion of Riot's senior leadership is focused on how to make sure Riot's culture remains intact as the organization continues to grow globally. This has some interesting manifestations as it comes to hiring and career growth. - Culture is prized more than raw technical ability in a hire. A candidate may be intellectually brilliant or driven, but will not make it through if they seem to lack humility or a default orientation toward succeeding as a team versus as an individual. I have witnessed any number of amazing engineers either be passed over as a hire or leave the company because at the end of the day they valued building awesome technology more than they valued how that technology was creating better experiences for the player. This is neither a pro nor a con, but it is a reality that potential Rioters should understand and keep in mind. - Promotion and career progression are disconnected from how "hard" one works, who they know, or one's particular work quality (unless that quality is sub-par). It's mostly a function of one's demonstrated ability to force-multiply; to help their team or other teams to accomplish more and to drive new ways to approaching problems. "Senior" individuals are not looked at as merely having greater expertise than their peers or having higher throughput. They're primarily viewed as people who are able to create an environment or atmosphere that removes obstacles and makes their peers feel empowered. Thus, longevity or delivery on mere quantity of features doesn't play well for advancement. - Everything is done as part of a team. Lone-wolves, no matter how brilliant, will not succeed long term. Individual contributors are not highly valued unless they are also helping to level up the rest of their peers. Individual quantity, throughput, or flashes of brilliance don't really make up for failure in this regard. - Internal advancement to senior leadership is primarily achieved through challenging convention - championing some new idea or problem space - and being able to rally a team around it. Waiting for a new department to have an open leadership slot is not very effective. Most senior leaders I've observed that weren't external hires were folks who identified a problem space they cared about passionately, were able to rally others around around it, and ended up proposing and creating the team/department from wholecloth. - Management will generally not tell you what to do. This is good for the type of people Riot wants to attract, not so good for those who are fundamentally task-oriented. Leaders at Riot want to clarify goals and expectations, but unless you're an associate level, they don't want to tell you what to do or how to do it. They generally expect that Rioters are capable of thinking for themselves and understand when to reach out to their teammates or leaders for alignment or help. But individual Rioters are expected to own this themselves and figure out what needs to be done. This can be empowering much of the time, but also frustrating when a Rioter lacks clarity and doesn't understand how to seek it. Lastly, on the positive side, Riot's culture of open feedback has created an environment where everything mentioned in this review (both in pros here and the cons below) can be (and are regularly) discussed openly. Riot isn't a perfect organization - it's made of human beings after all - but it is an organization that craves feedback and opportunities to learn how to be better all the time.

    Cons

    Same with the pros above, I don't consider these purely negative, but they do present some challenges. Most of these center on how Rioters communicate effectively as the scale of the company increases. - Hiring feels SLOW. The need to maintain Riot culture in addition to finding highly qualified candidates can make it feel like you're constantly searching for a unicorn. It's super important to find cultural fits. But if your team needs to hire 5 people to succeed, get ready to feel like you're short on resources for the next year. - Immature communication channels. Riot is gradually figuring out how to manage team interactions as the company grows across multiple offices, but this can often be painful. There is still some startup mentality where people think they can just call folks into a room/meeting and everyone will be on the same page. This can sometimes lead to a sense that you need to be "in the room" in order to have your opinion matter. - Too many recurring meetings. As Riot grows and it becomes harder to have casual face-to-face conversations with all stakeholders, lots of folks try to schedule meetings as a replacement. These drain the productive juices out of many participants. Be prepared to push back on any meeting invite that doesn't have a set, clear agenda. They will try to take over your calendar. - Weak meeting facilitation. Riot prides itself on being a flat organization. Bosses don't dominate the discussion and all Rioters are encouraged to participate. Riot tries to create a meritocratic environment for surfacing ideas in meetings, where anyone is encouraged to speak up at any time. But without strong facilitation, this often leads to people who are willing to interrupt or those whose style is to "think out loud" to be the majority of the voice that gets heard. This has led to an impression among many that when it comes to getting your vision across at Riot, only alpha personalities are valued. This is an unfortunate (and inaccurate) perception, but it's not helped by lack of strong facilitation during meetings. Riot needs to learn stronger facilitation techniques in order to maintain meritocratic interactions without accidentally promoting a culture that values "waiting to talk" over listening. Be prepared to exercise patience here. - Side-effects of a strong culture of ownership. Usually this is a great thing, as it encourages teams to take responsibility for what they create end-to-end without pointing fingers when they assumed another team would handle something for them. But a side effect one will notice over time is that some teams come to believe they own an entire type of problem space for the company and can become territorial when other teams start to tread in their domain. This is something management seems sort of aware of and is gradually dealing with over time, but it can be a pain point. People who excel at inter-team collaboration and relationship building will be most effective under these circumstances. - Individual Rioters are responsible for maintaining their own work/life balance. This is a positive in principle, but I think the company could do more to arm new Rioters with some practical tools & techniques. Nobody makes you stay late or work weekends, but it's very easy to fall into doing that at Riot if you don't make a conscious effort to stay on top of it.

    Advice to Management

    Keep the strong focus on culture as the company continues to grow. Do more to articulate this externally with prospective hires. Riot culture is something with a lot of nuance, and many potential hires are coming into this with little understanding of how Riot actually thinks about its own values. Riot places a lot of emphasis on leadership and cultivating leadership qualities. Start to place equal emphasis on communications and facilitation as the company grows in order to allow leadership and teams to scale, and to ensure all Rioters feel they have adequate venues to contribute their ideas.


  2. Lots of work, awful pay

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Software Engineer in Los Angeles, CA
    Current Employee - Software Engineer in Los Angeles, CA

    I have been working at Riot Games full-time (More than a year)

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    You get to work with some really awesome people, passionate about what they are doing The culture is the best part about the company, though some who have lost their ambition are able to stick around for longer than they should Feedback is open, but sometimes ignored

    Cons

    Work-life balance is really hard to have on some teams The pay is really bad, some people are being extremely underpaid in exchange for culture High turnover due to these issues

    Advice to Management

    Focus more on getting features out the door, and all your teams


  3. Helpful (1)

    Not the best, not the worst

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Web Content Live Coordinator - ESports (Contractor) in Santa Monica, CA
    Former Employee - Web Content Live Coordinator - ESports (Contractor) in Santa Monica, CA

    I worked at Riot Games

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Working for Riot was a very cool experience. I worked as a contractor for the eSports team maintaining the front end of their website throughout the week, primarily during LCS broadcasts. Most of the people there are smart, talented folks that are passionate about the product and Riot as a whole. Everyone sort of shoots from the hip, which is fairly typical of both broadcast and game development environments, so be ready to learn and adapt on the fly.

    Cons

    Training for minimal, but not ineffective. You're sort of at the mercy of your direct superior, so if you get assigned to someone that's on the flighty side, you run the risk of getting marginalized pretty quickly. Upper management will barely know you exist, and chances are you'll get blamed for anything that goes wrong, even if you had nothing to do with it - that's just the life of a remote contractor. Also, hours were sporadic at best, and downright awful at worst - long graveyard shifts during major Asian tournaments are very common. And promotions aren't all that common. In general, it seems Riot brings in new talent to fill positions rather than promoting lower level staff.

    Advice to Management

    Tighten up the training for contractors and spend more time and energy on communication. A lot of the issues that I ran into while I was working this position could have been mitigated, if not avoided altogether, by better communication. If you're going to hire a contractor for a specific role, keep them to that role. It's nearly impossible to expand your responsibilities and learn new tasks when you aren't in the office every day - the environment is just too fast-paced.


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  5. Helpful (1)

    A great mix of Games Industry and Tech Industry

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Software Engineer in Santa Monica, CA
    Current Employee - Software Engineer in Santa Monica, CA

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

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Talented coworkers. Great environment, so much enthusiasm and passion for games and our players. Tech industry style compensation, competes on pay with Amazon/Microsoft/Google/Facebook. Amazing opportunities for career movement, especially inside engineering. If you identify a need and can meet that need it is easy to move around the company. I know people who were hired for backend platform work who are now game engineers.

    Cons

    Still dealing with the legacy of explosive growth, so organizationally immature with a fair amount of tech debt. Some areas feel understaffed and finding excellent candidates who share our values has been difficult. Limited liquidity access for equity compensation (due to the company being private).

    Advice to Management

    Make sure that we don't have too many projects in flight and that each project has adequate staffing to deliver in a reasonable amount of time. Focus on hiring/training great leaders. Keep aggressively trying to hire the best of the best. Make sure that you're working on building player (and employee) trust.


  6. Helpful (12)

    Squandering Opportunities

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

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

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    The work we do at Riot never gets dull. There are tons of amazing challenges and plenty of work for you to reach out and take. You can try new strategies and innovate on existing work. I would love to hire people who work at Riot for other companies as they are forced to innovate and push boundaries regularly. A majority of the company really cares about League, and it is great that everyone has high empathy for our players, as we are players ourselves. The perks are genuinely outstanding and I haven't seen better in another game company.

    Cons

    Over time, Riot has started dramatically sliding into a downward trajectory due to our explosive growth. Long gone are the days where everyone worked hard together and strive to provide tangible results towards player value. There are still pockets where this exists, but are more of the exception than the rule. Friendships, nepotism, and saying the right thing in meetings are now far more important to career growth than anything else. There is a major focus on bringing in new people who are considered awesome with only scattered emphasis on giving people opportunities to grow themselves. Some of those same awesome people then leave within 6 months. Taking on new projects and demonstrating results there are often looked upon negatively if you don't execute them flawlessly. We have become super risk adverse and are so afraid of making a mistake many people sit in paralysis. We constantly pat ourselves on the back and say how awesome we are and then remind ourselves to be humble in our awesomeness. There certainly is lots of awesome stuff we do, but there is a ton of dead weight and very little real humility. We are proud of our feedback culture, and how open and trasparent we are. For some parts of Riot that is really true and those people are very lucky. For other parts, people live in fear of leaving real feedback for fear of retaliation. We are in the middle of our review process and it is almost all anonymous due to that fear. These problems are more significant for women at Riot, because they routinely seem to get the short end of the stick. Double standards, worse pay, higher expectations and faster to be exited. If you are a smooth talker and want what is probably a safe and interesting job for years to come, I would highly recommend Riot. If you want to be valued by your results, and paid a comparable amount to other companies in Santa Monica, pick somewhere else.

    Advice to Management

    Look at your senior leadership staff and then at some of your mid tier leaders. Genuinely hold each other accountable for results and for growing their people. Don't just say it, actually measure it. If an initiative, discipline, or work team can't show meaningful progress in delivering player value and leveling their people up over the past year and show it easily, then maybe the leadership structure needs to change.


  7. Helpful (13)

    Avoid if in management. If in other role be aware of the true day to day before making your decision

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

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

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    - Unlimited PTO - The office - Some really great people - Lots of potential if the management and cultural issues get fixed

    Cons

    Riot has tons of potential but as of now there's a huge layer of people and management systems in place that prevent any attempt at improving the day to day for the teams and making the culture more in line with how it portrays itself. It's all about playing politics/pleasing the right people and not getting results. Mark & Brandon's vision on management and culture is what got me to join the studio and it was sad that the walk was so far from the talk. Better you know what to expect and make your decision accordingly. Because Riot is a huge list of teams though, you might get lucky and end up on a team that is very much like the talk. But if you're going to management you better be ready to deal with a load of ambiguous politics and be willing to follow orders without making waves. A mere disagreement with the wrong person can lead you out. Be also prepared to be pressured to bring results and be blocked by the very same people. They somehow expect you to bring results while keeping things the same or not rubbing anyone off in the change process. You were told you were hired to bring results and bring your expertise on how other companies are organized, but in truth you were brought in to fulfill an illusion and integrate in the status quo like in any other company. Your success will depend on who you make friends with and who you rub the wrong way. So if you consider the studio with a desire to improve things, have autonomy/liberty of action and no politics you might want to pass. Riot has become a place where you "align" or else. Different view points are not welcome. If you're an introvert you might want to pass too as Riot culture promotes assertiveness and scores low on respect of different view points, thoughtfulness and collaboration. The assertive ones win the arguments, not the best idea providers nor the data gatherers. This leads to teams spinning their wheels a lot, with the worst cases being not shipping anything in years...Teams also don't like to depend on each other and rather than fix their communication, they think the solution is to be totally independent from one another which emphasizes frictions. This is quite telling on the organizational issues at hand. Prepare for some pains in getting teams to communicate or work effectively with others to get things done. I would also not recommend if you're a female unless you're happy to take a passive role, take notes and say yes all the time. You're there to be of service, not to have opinions. While the guys can disagree to the point of screaming at each other , you'll be seen as negative and difficult if you fight for your ideas. Beware what people say. Though Riot promotes direct feedback, it's very hard to get honest feedback from people. If you see your manager acting weird there's probably some feedback they're not sharing. Make sure you can trust the people you interact with if you have constructive feedback on the company, as saying anything constructive can easily be perceived as negativity. For those of you confused by the fact that I said Riot promotes fitting in but at the same time the assertive ones win, welcome to what reviewers call "ambiguity". You'll have plenty of situations like this at Riot, making it very difficult to assess the right course of action. You'll be told to give your opinions but then your managers will be annoyed because you disagreed with them. You'll be told to take initiative but then your managers and others will be annoyed you didn't ask permission first etc...As a manager I consider clarity to be a key part of my role in getting great performance from my teams so that didn't work for me. Figuring out what the true Riot culture is usually takes people a full year. That's no joke. I asked around because I couldn't believe what i was seeing and most of the people I talked to said they struggled here their full first year and some are still struggling to this day because they cannot do anything about the politics which make getting results difficult, and are still pressured to bring results by those same people blocking them. That's only something that can be fixed from the top...

    Advice to Management

    The idea of your company is great. Your manifesto is great. You seem to have the right ideas in terms of what makes good management but you have tons of bad managers in your company...You need a way to know who is truly good and who is not. How you view your managers as good or bad should be focused on results and team feedback not on management politics, how long someone has been in the studio or your personal relations with them. Ask people on the ground directly so they don't fear repercussions. Ask the newest people who joined your company about what their integration experience has been like, what differences they see between what they expected and what is. It's not ideal but if you want to fix management at Riot, you have to assess every one of your managers, starting with the most senior, based on their results and direct feedback from the ground. It's sad to say but you might have to get back on the ground and see the current dynamics of your company for yourself. Your organizational management system should be rethought. Your agile system has actually created a bigger more complex hierarchy than a regular hierarchy system would have and is hiding low performance at all levels. It might be time to consider other options to bring the clarity in terms of results your company needs for the long-term. You should look into how assessing fit or performance is conducted in your studio. You are getting candidates with some pretty good potential in, and if you wonder why they fail it's mostly due to the discrepancy between how you advertise your company and what the day to day is, in addition to the mediocrity of your managers. With the time it takes you to hire someone and the high turnover you have, is it more probable you made lots of bad hires or that something in your culture is making those people fail? Similarly to being curious about the experience of newcomers I would advise to be curious as to why people are leaving or are being let go because that side of the picture also provides very interesting insight on how a company truly functions. They were not all bad apples, some were true rioters = people who wanted to do right instead of what they were told, who wanted to improve things where they could be improved instead of bending to status quo for comfort's sake, people who thought Riot was not like other companies...they thought Riot was about challenging convention, bringing value where it was needed most and being judged based on measurable performance...maybe it was like that once but it's not anymore and it's on you to decide if that's ok or not.


  8. Helpful (17)

    Long slow death of a thousand cuts by selfish senior management

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

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

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Riot has tons of passionate coworkers and very smart people to learn from during your time there. Use your energy well and build a network you can poach from later.

    Cons

    It doesn't really matter if you are effective or not. Your career progression and compensation won't correlate. Plenty of places for lazy people to hide and not do work, so why kill yourself when someone else will end up with the credit anyway? Lots of talking heads. Culture has been more or less destroyed by a certain individual.

    Advice to Management

    You need to clean house, cut the fat, and make it easier for people to get work finished. Reward execution rather than idea generation and hand waving.


  9. Helpful (14)

    Rapid growth, rapid changes

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

    I worked at Riot Games full-time

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    The folks I worked with were all crazy talented. Lots of perks. Early in my stay it was an incredibly energetic workplace filled with passionate people who just wanted to create kickass content.

    Cons

    Teams became bloated. Still, content output dwindled as the 'horizontal' culture rested at odds with the unchecked growth. What's left is the worst of both worlds -- any of the massive number of employees can grind production to a halt if they're loud enough, so you get huge teams working in bubbles -- distant enough to make maintaining visibility a serious issue, but oversized enough to make decision making a nightmare. The word 'initiative' is the most abused in Riot's vocabulary. Responsibility and recognition are not earned by being great at what you do, it's earned by loudly championing -something- whether it comes to fruition or not. Lots of politics, bureaucracy, and red tape. Important teams were having their bandwidth squandered by the aforementioned initiative owners all insisting their cause is worth working on. Lots of playing it safe content-wise. Unique ideas get pressed into molds so they can instead be grouped and bundled up according to the (coincidentally subjective) interpretation of 'data'. This is further complicated by Riot being a global company, making it very difficult to take risks. This one's personal, but unlimited PTO actually made it feel pretty bad taking time off. You don't accumulate it, so there's no real feeling of spending it and taking a break that you've verifiably earned. This made maintaining a healthy work-life balance a challenge for me. Because leadership and management responsibilities are essentially given out to whomever asks for them the loudest, career guidance was a problem. Getting any straight answers about how to progress and level up was remarkably difficult when I was actually stuck. Hilariously masturbatory company-or-team-wide e-mails and speeches about humility. Low investment in long-term growth or product health from an engineering/tools perspective (This probably isn't news). It seems that there's always some shiny new feature or initiative being chased instead. The desire to amass the industry's best talent and the apparent aversion to telling awesome people that they're being awesome is not a good mix. Creating awesome stuff on teams packed with talented people and then getting no recognition for it even at a team level became incredibly draining for me. All in all, it was an incredibly stressful place to work.

    Advice to Management

    When you become a company of Riot's size, with Riot's perks and Riot's massive, globally acclaimed behemoth of a game, you start attracting people who want to work there for the wrong reasons. Maybe it's the perks, maybe it's the near-celebrity appeal of working on LoL/at the company that develops LoL, and perhaps it's the fact that "I owned this initiative working at Riot" looks damn good on a resume. In any case, put your focus back on the players and away from ego. Stop championing the manifesto and actually adhere to it.


  10. Helpful (5)

    Great Place To Work - If You Fit

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Associate Software Engineer in Los Angeles, CA
    Current Employee - Associate Software Engineer in Los Angeles, CA

    I have been working at Riot Games

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Riot is an incredible place to work - you are surrounded by smart, passionate people who deeply care about the experience of players and who share an ambitious vision of making gaming better for gamers. Engineering really is trying to push game technology to the next level, and that is an incredibly rewarding challenge. Micromanaging is not really a thing at Riot - teams have the liberty to decide on how to meet their goals and are generally free to choose their own path. If you can handle the ambiguity that comes from having a goal without an externally-imposed instruction set, this is incredibly empowering. If you can't, you will fail. Benefits are pretty darn good - both in the form of standard benefits (health insurance, 401k matching, etc) and in the form of less standard perks (the new office occasionally feels like nerd Disneyland). The space we work in now is incredible, and the people who work to make sure we have a great place to work probably deserve even more praise than I can give them. The problems we work on are incredibly fun - the scale we need to support and the expected level of quality we need to hit mean that you have to stay on your toes and keep growing. If you are the kind of person who loves to rise to a challenge, and finds difficult problems their own reward, you will love this. If you aren't, Riot isn't for you.

    Cons

    Ear Flicks: * Riot is very loud, which can be disruptive to work. * Meeting culture can be kinda lax, which is annoying if you are not lax yourself. * Living in Los Angeles More Substantive Cons: * Riot is most certainly not for everyone - you have to be incredibly comfortable with ambiguity, capable of self-management, and able to handle your own growth. You will have management, but they will be hands-off. If you can handle that, you will succeed, but if you can't, you will fail. * There isn't enough middle-management to go around. Managers are overtaxed and have too many reports, which means that individuals own even more of their own careers than was perhaps intended. * Inter-group (particularly between teams and initiatives) trust seems low at times, which is weird, given that trust is one of the cornerstones of Riot's values. * Things get done slowly - not from lack of hard work or proper prioritization, but because the core technology we work with was not built to sustain the level or kind of use it actually has. Scaling out to support the massive number of players we need to support at the level we want to support them at makes even simple problems into hard problems. Efforts to pay down tech-debt and improve our base scalability continue to improve our iteration speed, but lots of work remains. This can be really disheartening, because players often feel that we aren't working hard enough, aren't working well enough, or just don't care about them, which is as far from the truth as you can get. For me, personally, nothing hurts more than feeling like the people we do this for aren't getting what they want. * Pay isn't great - it isn't horrible, but if Riot really wants to recruit Google level talent, we need to shell out Google level money - and we don't. Most of that is probably the inherent lower pay that people in the games industry receive, but that shouldn't be a constraint we accept. * You own your own work-life balance. That sounds like a pro, but for lots of Rioters, that just enables them to have terrible work-life balance and not correct it. Teams and management need to do a better job of setting the expectation of reasonable balance. * Living in Los Angeles... No, but seriously - LA is expensive as heck to live in and has infrastructure that seems like it hasn't improved since the 1950's. Riot is the only reason I am willing to live here.

    Advice to Management

    Direction is good, but don't get complacent. If we really want to serve players at the level we believe they should be served at, we still have a long way to go. Listen more to your most junior employees - there is more pain there than you might realize.


  11. Helpful (9)

    Hard work for little pay

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

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

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Fully stock kitchen, able to play games during the work day, free meals daily and other fun activities

    Cons

    Very very "clicky". If you're not part of a click, people talk rumors about you and look down on you.



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