Vicarious Visions
3.0 of 5 24 reviews
www.vvisions.com Albany, NY 150 to 499 Employees

Vicarious Visions Reviews

Updated Apr 15, 2014
Vicarious Visions – Albany – “Vicarious Visions”

All Employees Current Employees Only

3.0 24 reviews

                             

78% Approve of the CEO

Vicarious Visions CEO & Chief Creative Officer Karthik Bala

Karthik Bala

(9 ratings)

53% of employees recommend this company to a friend
24 Employee Reviews
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Great Place to Work

Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

I have been working at Vicarious Visions full-time

ProsA very strong culture. Great IP to work on. Lots of opportunity for personal development.

ConsThe Albany area won't appeal to everyone.

Advice to Senior ManagementStay focused on continuing to develop a strong talent base. Stay true to your passions.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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A great stepping stone for a career in the game industry.

Quality Assurance Tester (Former Employee)
Menands, NY

I worked at Vicarious Visions as a contractor for more than 3 years

ProsIs a great gateway into the game industry
Has a community that plans events
Has flex schedule hours
Friendly atmosphere

ConsAdvancement within the company is difficult
Really long hours for extended time periods
Sometimes goes into shift based schedules during crunch

Advice to Senior ManagementWith great power comes great responsibility

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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Best experience I could ask for

Senior Quality Assurance Tester (Former Employee)
Albany, NY

I worked at Vicarious Visions as a contractor for more than a year

ProsFriendly atmosphere. Great fun/work balance. Everyone is willing to help where needed. Overall a rewarding experience to get to work here

ConsCommunication between departments needs to be overhauled greatly. Miscommunication can be a huge downfall of a project and there were times I thought it may go that way.

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

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Quality Assurance Tester

Quality Assurance Tester (Former Employee)
Albany, NY

I worked at Vicarious Visions as a contractor for less than a year

ProsThe environment was great, and a fun place to work.

ConsThe position was only temporary and you were treated as such

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

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Lots of room to grow

Software Engineer (Current Employee)
Albany, NY

I have been working at Vicarious Visions full-time

ProsLots of flexibility in terms of what you'll be able to work on. Both in terms of projects and platforms.

ConsDecision making is done exclusively. Project organization is very hierarchical.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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Better than most

Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)
Albany, NY

I worked at Vicarious Visions

ProsThe Bala brothers who run this place know what they are doing
Cool, fancy, studio
Good relationship with nintendo
Uppermanagment still trys to keep the studio feeling like it considers its employees family.
Driving distance to New York City, and Boston.

ConsManagement other than the Bala's and executive producers are grossly miscast.
Some senior level developers have bloated sense of purpose and ability and even worse people skills. Unfortunately these are the people that are also lessened to by senior management the most.
If you tow the line at VV you will likely enjoy your stay, if you don't .... well it will be a short stay anyway.
Albany really sucks in most every way imaginable.
Cost of living it to high for what you get in the area.
Snow

Advice to Senior ManagementManagement isn't that large of an issue. Sure there are some miscast individuals but they mean well and want to do a good job. I think your best route for improvement is to remove, or at least counter some of entrenched senior development personal that are still there. Talk with some mid-level long term employees and even the senior groups on a 1 on 1 basis and ask them what is the biggest issue that they are concerned with in the studio. Something tells me you are going to see a common thread.
I wish you guys all the best, hopefully i have written a fair review. I would be willing to return to your studio someday, but not until there is an equilibrium.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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3 people found this helpful  

A company that believes in their management, not their content creators

Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)
Albany, NY

I worked at Vicarious Visions

ProsA beautiful facility
A management team that is attempting to calm people's nerves with many outings and parties
A (currently) steady slate of titles to work on
A current push among the rank and file to bring improvements from the bottom up
Like most game companies, VV is filled with fun and interesting people

ConsA bloated management group including multiple executive producers, producers, assistant producers, game directors, leads and multiple seniors that 'manage' others instead of producing content. This group of managers attempt to manage down with little understanding of the issues and almost all of them believe they're qualified to be the Lead Designer and attempt to push their ideas rather than support the team.

A culture of cronyism; you had better be good friends with the producers and seniors that matter or you'll be relegated to grunt work and the management group will (like a hall-of-mirrors) re-enforce their own negative ideas about you quickly. It doesn't really matter if their ideas are reality; few people at that level actively seek information and understanding. This can take years to reverse, if it can be at all.

A sense of entitlement is prevalent at the company. With no other major local game studios in the area the employees are free to get 'big heads' and compare themselves with the top companies in the industry. This isn't even remotely true. VV has yet to put out a project that differentiates it from the pack. This is partially to do with it's slate of sequels, ports, expansions and partially to do with it's management rewarding on-time-delivery far more than stand out products.

VV still has the mentality that getting the project out the door is success enough. They're going to have a hard time breaking out of this mentality with the current management/lead designers. The hurdle that continues to provide a stumbling block on every VV project is the inability to design games with in scope with time to polish their content. The company has set a goal for itself to be influential and push the envelope; at the moment I've seen nothing to indicate an actual move in that direction.

Advice to Senior ManagementPeople don't leave companies, they leave bad management.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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Mostly Good Work Life Balance

Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)
Albany, NY

I worked at Vicarious Visions

ProsGood work life balance. Interesting set of projects most of the time.

ConsMiddle Management is blotted, needs some sort of bottom up evaluation of employees to executives, in house technology is holding them back. Some politics. Not as open and transparent of an environment as it used to be.

Advice to Senior ManagementVicarious is a good place for starting out, but they tend to panic on 'bigger' projects, and forget what made them great. It is not that they can't handle big projects it is just the company gets self-conscious about them. Upper management also needs to listen to the employees from the bottom up, even the stuff that might be difficult to hear. Many of the recent problems could have been avoided if the Management had listened to the teams about the projects

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Good as a first job in the industry, but get out before your feelings get crushed or the studio falls apart.

Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)
Albany, NY

I have been working at Vicarious Visions

Pros- fun, young people
- games with a lot of potential

Cons- you are unappreciated and never recognized nor rewarded for doing a good job
- middle managment is more into themselves and trying to climb hire in the ladder
- mediocrity seems to be accepted at VV, unfortunately
- good ideas from team members are usually shut down for no apparent reason or picked up by a lead that will claim them as their own
- pay and pay raises are too low
- Albany is not a fun place to live
- Studio is dark (you're working under neon lights all day) and constantly shaking (poor building structure)

Advice to Senior ManagementMiddle management needs to be shrinked and trained to treat others as human beings and needs to stop lying to people when there are problems.

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Worked my ass off, got great reviews and bonuses for 3 yrs. TODAY, was axed along with 50% of staff/ Guitar Hero is dead

Engineer (Current Employee)
Albany, NY

I have been working at Vicarious Visions

Prosgrreat as long as Activision is making big . The little guy is dead here!!!!!!!!!!!!!

ConsDon't expect loyalty from this employer

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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Glassdoor is your free inside look at Vicarious Visions reviews and ratings — including employee satisfaction and approval rating for Vicarious Visions CEO Karthik Bala . All 24 reviews posted anonymously by Vicarious Visions employees.