Big Fish Games Reviews | Glassdoor

Big Fish Games Reviews

Updated October 24, 2018
173 reviews

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3.3
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Jeff Karp
6 Ratings

173 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • "Excellent work-life balance (haven't crunched once)" (in 28 reviews)

  • "Good advancement opportunity, relaxed work environment, management has a vision for growth" (in 22 reviews)

Cons
  • "Customer Service department is terribly run" (in 6 reviews)

  • "There are a lot of people in upper management that were good for a small scrappy business like Big Fish was 6-8 years ago" (in 5 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (2)

    "Opportunities Abound"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Oakland, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Oakland, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Big Fish Games full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    - Major growth opportunities
    - Excellent work-life balance (haven't crunched once)
    - Transparent leadership
    - Fun, nice, passionate coworkers
    - Stable product gives job security

    Cons

    - Pay is a little less than competitive
    - Social casino isn't the most exciting genre to work in

    Advice to Management

    You've got a lot of talented, creative folks; remember to give them outlets to express it.


  2. Helpful (2)

    "Decent perks, poor upper management."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - NOC Technician in Seattle, WA
    Former Employee - NOC Technician in Seattle, WA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Great for learning new tech
    Reasonable compensation

    Cons

    Upper management is quick to fire employees with little or no coaching
    Upper management does not listen to direct managers
    Company gets bought and resold every 3-5 years
    Currently owned by an Australian Slot Machine Manufacturer
    Original Company founder Paul Thelen has left the company

    Advice to Management

    Consider coaching your employees before terminating them. You've lost talented techs due to missed coaching opportunities.

  3. Helpful (1)

    "BFG Product Manager"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Senior Product Manager in Seattle, WA
    Former Employee - Senior Product Manager in Seattle, WA

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

    Pros

    Good Work Life Balance. Nice people.

    Cons

    There were many times that I wished we were more decisive.


  4. "Big Fishy Politics"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Big Fish Games full-time

    Pros

    - Super chill, laid-back work environment; easy to coast by
    - Good work/life balance
    - Great new location in downtown Seattle

    Cons

    - Clear favoritism; like some other reviewer had mentioned, it's not about what you know, it's about who you know
    - Lack of work ethic and skill by individuals who bank on flattery instead of actual work
    - Frat/sorority house mentality

    Advice to Management

    Be more self aware. Have some ethics.


  5. "Changing times"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Big Fish Games full-time

    Pros

    + Excellent work/life balance, good benefits, and nice facilities
    + Recent pipeline adjustments have made the production goals much more clear.

    Cons

    Depending on department, VPs can be intrusive and redirect so often it is hard to get things done.

    Advice to Management

    Trust your teams to do their jobs. Tell them what you want to see, then let them figure out how to do it best for their product. Stop bundling the solution with the request.

    Just because a competitor implements 'feature X' in their game doesn't mean that the same feature will slot directly into our products.

    Lastly, if you do offer direction on something, stop "chasing the shiny" and let the teams implement that feature rather than redirecting to the "new thing" 2 weeks later.


  6. Helpful (2)

    "Software Engineer"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Software Engineer
    Former Employee - Software Engineer
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Great work/life balance in engineering. Personal issues always came first on my team.

    Cons

    The company has changed hands multiple times in the last few years, and it shows in the disorganized management, and lack of direction.

    The recent lay-offs were very poorly handled. They gave us about zero minutes of warning and some people were mistakenly sent to the wrong meetings. Also, the list of people was clearly put together by someone who was disconnected from the teams.

    Advice to Management

    Listen more to the lower level managers who have been around a while. They know the people and the core values. High expectations are fine, but they're much more likely to be met if they align with your teams' strengths.


  7. Helpful (2)

    "Fun but can be a shark tank"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Seattle, WA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Seattle, WA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Big Fish Games full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Fun-centric environment. Didn’t need to work overtime very often. Most people go home at 5pm or earlier. Brand new building located downtown.

    Cons

    Depending the department you work in, environment can differ drastically. Not much education or training provided. Career growth will be determined more by who can make the most friends so if you are the type who likes to let hard work speak for itself you probably won’t do well here. Demographic skews younger. And politics, ambitious workers and competitiveness can make the environment a bit like a shark tank.

    Advice to Management

    Make sure you foster an environment of inclusion rather than competition. Make sure that training is provided for managers. Make sure that you respond to your employees when they ask for help, leadership and guidance.

  8. Helpful (1)

    "Such a sham"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Big Fish Games full-time

    Pros

    Lots of travel. Free goldfish crackers in the kitchen.

    Cons

    Management is terrible. Senior Management in 3rd party is a boys club who believe they hold the key to making games. They don't listen to people who have been in the games industry for years and they don't trust their judgment.

    Advice to Management

    To the parent company, you are paying for a lot of travel and I can tell you it's not necessary. Those that travel will give exhaustive excuses about why they absolutely neeeed to go to Paris or Korea to meet the developers every quarter, but they know it's not true. Everything they accomplish there can be done over Skype and email. Meeting in person is nice, but it's an excuse to party and vacation. You are paying for your employees vacations 4 times per year if not more.


  9. Helpful (5)

    "Worst company ever!"

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

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

    Pros

    There are a few good people who make the environment more tolerable

    Cons

    I would highly discourage anyone from working at Big Fish. The biggest reason is the awful management- there is no communication, they don't listen to the needs of their team, they have superior attitudes and provide absolutely no guidance or mentorship. The executives take credit for any wins, and never show any appreciation for individual achievements. They also demand 80 hour work weeks with no reprieve. For these reasons, they have had very high turnover, hence why they are always hiring. The constant re-pivoting with all the acquisitions and team changes only further complicates the work environment.

    Advice to Management

    Stop hiring jerks in management and focus on your strengths, rather than trying to do everything at once.


  10. Helpful (2)

    "Great work environment, not-so-great manger level"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Translator in Seattle, WA
    Former Employee - Translator in Seattle, WA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Great work environment. Lots of fun event and food around that seem they tries to make the employees keep happy.

    Cons

    Translators and Language editors' hourly payment seems lower than other tech companies around Seattle. Translators $17- $21.40 per hour for Level II. Language Editor $17.00 -$20.80 for Level II.

    Manager level people don't have much enough skill and mind to manage their team. Some are great, the others are so bad. Once you have to work under the bad type of manager, that's the trigger you decide to leave the company.

    Advice to Management

    The company should give more decent trainings to manager level.


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