Working at Pocket Gems | Glassdoor

Pocket Gems Overview

San Francisco, CA
201 to 500 employees
Company - Private
Video Games
Unknown / Non-Applicable
Pocket Gems wants to build the greatest games and interactive entertainment in the world. That’s the mission our founders began with in an apartment above a pizza shop back in 2009 and we continue it today.

Pocket Gems has grown to over 250 people ... Read more

Mission: We have 2 missions: Build the world’s greatest games and become a global leader in the mobile entertainment industry.

Company Updates

  • Nicholas Pezarro (Product Manager on War Dragons) discusses the importance of in-game events:

    Pocket Gems on the importance and best implementation of in-game events

    People Pocket Gamer Connects will be heading to Vancouver for the first time ever on 28-29 June. Tickets are still available. So, to give you a hint at what you can expect, we're shining the spotlight onto our speakers to provide a deeper look at the personalities who will be taking the stage.

  • Chris Luhur (our Director of Marketing) explains the new world of marketing:

    5 Ways Mobile Games Marketing Is Changing In 2016

    Story written by Chris Luhur, director of marketing at Pocket Gems There are very few constants in life. Benjamin Franklin once said that the only certain things in this world are death and taxes. Had he made mobile games, Franklin may have added rising CPI costs to the list of certainties.

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Pocket Gems – Why Work For Us?

Pioneering Mobile Games and Entertainment

Our strategy is driven by the belief that extraordinary results come from the creation of new categories, and we go after these opportunities fearlessly.

Our initial slate of games created the simulation genre on mobile, one of the very first successful categories. Over the past couple of years, we have been building on our legacy through the establishment of two new categories:

Storytelling in the form of an interactive mobile-first platform

Synchronous AAA-quality multiplayer 3D games

If you want to be part of building an incredible creative organization and enjoy a work environment that requires strong problem solving skills and independent self-direction, check out our open roles!


Everyday Life at Pocket Gems

What kind of games company would we be if we didn’t like having fun? Pocket Gems has something for everybody: great parties, in-office yoga, board game nights, Magic tournaments, open mics, and more. It’s not just about fun though. We also have a recurring lecture series, Pocket Gems University, where team members teach everything from stained glass design to effectively running a scrum.

As great as our office is, we don’t want you to spend all your time here. We believe strongly in a healthy work-life balance and encourage our team members to do the same. We also have a flexible vacation policy and we work closely with parents to find flexible hours that make sense for them.

The perks are pretty awesome too. We have competitive salaries, a 401k plan, meaningful equity and commuter benefits to name a few. Plus, we cover 100% of employee health insurance premiums and 75% for partners and families. We also give every new hire $100 to contribute to something cool to the office. Recent purchases include a 3D printer, a Mahjong table, and a massage chair.

Pocket Gems is looking for the best developers in the world to join us in revolutionizing the mobile gaming paradigm!

As a mobile engineer for Pocket Gems, you will build games and features with rapid release cycles that have an immediate impact, allowing you to reach tens of millions of users instantly.

We are looking for talented engineers who want to:

  • Collaborate closely in small, nimble, cross-functional teams with product managers, artists and designers to define our next generation of games
  • Develop and code innovative features using groundbreaking technologies
  • Enjoy the freedom of writing native applications while exploring the latest cross-platform technologies
  • Participate in all aspects of the project life-cycle, from specifications through release
  • Design and implement scalable, reliable and maintainable technologies for our iOS and Android gaming platforms 
  • Control, manage and analyze big data flows, allowing us to fully leverage our massive data streams
  • Work with brilliant and fun people!

We also offer some awesome perks and benefits:

  • Amazing, open plan office in the heart of San Francisco
  • Convenient Caltrain and BART access
  • Competitive salaries
  • Generous medical, dental and vision plans
  • Pimp your computer – Mac, PC, one monitor, two monitor, red monitor, blue monitor. We let you choose your weapon
  • Catered lunches every day and dinner options
  • … And, an endless supply of double rainbows.


  • Top 50 Devs

    Founded: September 2009
  • Titles Released: 17 on the iOS platform – And 9 on the Android platform
  • Titles are free-to-play and allow users to personalize their experiences through the purchase of virtual goods
  • iOS titles that have hit the top 10 iOS free apps list: 14
  • Accolades: #1 and #4 Top Grossing Apps in 2011 (Tap Zoo & Tap Pet Hotel)
  • Downloads: 80+ million
  • Amount Raised: $5 million from Sequoia Capital and Angel Investors Michael Dearing (Stanford Professor and former eBay executive), Jeff Fluhr (co-founder and former CEO of StubHub), and Omar Hamoui (co-founder and former CEO of AdMob)
  • Founders: Daniel Terry and Harlan Crystal
  • Board Members: Daniel Terry (CEO), Harlan Crystal (CTO), and Jim Goetz (Sequoia Capital)
  • Case Sutdies: Google App Engine, Twitter

Pocket Gems Reviews

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Pocket Gems CEO Ben Liu
Ben Liu
39 Ratings
  • Featured Review

    "Fun and Encouraging Environment and Culture!!"

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Pocket Gems full-time (More than a year)


    Pocket Gems is on the of best working environments I have experienced. I have interfaced with a lot of tech startups in Silicon Valley and a lot of them have a similar vibe - kind of a "bro-y" culture, where all they care about is revenue.

    Pocket Gems is the total opposite - the people that work here are really hard-working and supportive of each other. At the end of the day, we just want to create fun and exciting games for people to play, and everyone has the same end goal. Not only that, but we do a lot of fun things around the office to get everyone to collaborate, such as themed lunches, game nights, and potlucks. We also have a Women's Network, which is a great way for women in the company to interact together!


    Again, people here work hard. You are hired because you are talented and have a job to do and we ARE a startup, so this is not the right environment if want to rest on your laurels. You have expectations to perform your job and sometimes there are changes within the company that you need to adjust to. That being said, the CEO is really transparent and we have meetings to keep everyone informed of what's happening in the company, so you're not in the dark.

    Advice to Management

    Continue to be transparent and collaborate with your team. Continue to celebrate wins!

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Pocket Gems Photos

Pocket Gems photo of: Pride Week
Pocket Gems photo of: Pocket Gems Women's Network Lunch
Pocket Gems photo of: Pocket Gems Holiday Party 2018
Pocket Gems photo of: Pocket Gems Holiday Party 2018
Pocket Gems photo of: Pocket Gems Holiday Party 2018
Pocket Gems photo of: Pocket Gems Holiday Party 2018
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Pocket Gems Interviews



Getting an Interview

Getting an Interview




  1. Featured Interview


    Graphics Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview


    I applied online. The process took 2+ months. I interviewed at Pocket Gems (San Francisco, CA) in November 2017.


    Applied on company website, contacted by HR the next day, had one comprehensive, short Q&A phone interview focused on graphics and 3D math, followed by 2 phone interviews on coderpad solving algo problems. Interviewers are nice and helpful, they ask follow ups to make sure you fully understand what you think you understand, but are pretty forgiving in general so it's not stressful. For coderpad coding you're supposed to build and run the program, so better be very familiar with the types of problems they ask.

    Finally I was invited on-site where I had 4 rounds of 1-hour interviews, including one round of graphics and C++, two whiteboard algo and one OO design. Got verbal offer the next day and was asked for three references.

    During the process their HR was very responsive and helpful, they gave thorough feedbacks from multiple interviewers after the on-site which can help you evaluate your performance. I feel that they value communication, bug-free, honesty and domain specific knowledges. Being able to understand the problems, communicate your idea and justify your decision is really important.

    Interview Questions

See All 360 Interviews

Pocket Gems Awards & Accolades

  • Top 50 Developer, PocketGamer, 2012
  • Top Grossing App of 2011 (#1 Tap Zoo and #4 Tap Pet Hotel), Apple, 2011

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