Naughty Dog Reviews | Glassdoor

Naughty Dog Reviews

Updated August 13, 2017
33 reviews

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4.3
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Naughty Dog Co-President Evan Wells
Evan Wells
23 Ratings

33 Employee Reviews

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  1. "Contractor"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • 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
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Naughty Dog full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    seriously talented veterans , The studio has a great work environment and lots of opportunities to learn from co-workers.

    Cons

    On Contract and not yet knowing if you may be offered a Permanent Full-Time position.


  2. Helpful (1)

    "Amazing studio to work for"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Artist in Santa Monica, CA
    Current Employee - Artist in Santa Monica, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Naughty Dog full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Creative input, freedom, and world class artist to work with. It's a top notch company that cares for it's people and truly wants to make the best games out there!

    Cons

    Crunch can be brutal at times, and Santa Monica is a crazy expensive place to live. Salary is average, not fantastic but not bad.

    Advice to Management

    Keep it up! It's a great place to work and it's important to keep that passion and drive going

  3. "Work is life"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • 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 Naughty Dog full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Work on amazing games with great people

    Cons

    Insane crunch hours, little to no recognition or acknowledgment

    Advice to Management

    Positive reinforcement works


  4. Helpful (3)

    "Get ready to crunch and burn out."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Game Designer in Santa Monica, CA
    Former Employee - Game Designer in Santa Monica, CA
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Naughty Dog (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    Best work in the business.

    Cons

    Exclusive, clique culture. You're either in the in club, or a resource to be used up.

    Advice to Management

    Stop treating your employees as disposable.


  5. Helpful (2)

    "Great Games and People; Studio Has More Potential"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Senior Production Artist in Santa Monica, CA
    Former Employee - Senior Production Artist in Santa Monica, CA
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Naughty Dog full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    - Great people. Some of the most inspirational, passionate, and dedicated I've worked with.
    - Games are second to none in their genre. Contributing to them was a constant source of inspiration and satisfaction.
    - Benefits and and additional compensation were great.

    Cons

    - Absolutely no creative scope planning and scheduling which leads to an irresponsible amount of crunch and waste. There seemed to be very little acknowledgement by studio leadership of this issue.
    - Review and career development processes were clearly informal, and a bit of mystery.

    Advice to Management

    - Be more transparent about studio wide issues and initiatives. Hold health surveys and more company meetings; give employees a voice. Be transparent about growth and improvement.
    - More technical / tool development investment could improve art production flexibility and allow for iteration and change requests.
    - Junior engineers on staff could free up experienced engineers and allow them to achieve more and not get bogged down by UI development and simpler tasks.


  6. Helpful (2)

    "Great Work, Terrible Crunch"

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

    I worked at Naughty Dog full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    The work is extremely full-filling. The people who work at Naughty Dog are some of the best in the industry. You will grow as an artist

    Cons

    The crunch is terrible. The people can be very type A and arrogant. If you don't mind your soul being destroyed by the crunch, it's a great place to work.

    Advice to Management

    Schedule better. Loosen the terrible crunch.


  7. Helpful (9)

    "Game Designer"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Game Designer in Santa Monica, CA
    Current Employee - Game Designer in Santa Monica, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Utopia for game development. So much freedom. Everyone is incredibly passionate and dedicated. The structure is very flat and you can simply work on what you're interested in (within reason of course). Extremely friendly people as they hire based on personality. Cool internal talks from other industry professionals. Engine is incredible and constantly evolves to be better, week by week.

    Cons

    Errmmm.... Movie theatre can get a little cold...? I suppose mitigating crunch is always a worthwhile goal, but that's usually just down to our own obsession with detail.

    Advice to Management

    No feedback is good feedback is the mantra, but positive feedback can go such a long way in boosting people's motivation. Leads should try to pick out positives along with the much needed critiques.

  8. Helpful (2)

    "Where else?"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Game Designer in Santa Monica, CA
    Current Employee - Game Designer in Santa Monica, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Naughty Dog full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    You will work on the best games in the industry, and constantly be challenged to do your best work, including things no one has ever done in the industry before. Good work is recognized and rewarded.

    Cons

    The crunches are hard, lots of long hours at the end of the project. Your spouse must be ok with this.

    Advice to Management

    Crunch is a hard thing to solve, but is probably the #1 reason people leave. Better scheduling is hopefully in the pipeline.


  9. Helpful (7)

    "Greats devs, great people, too much crunch before game release."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Senior Programmer in Santa Monica, CA
    Former Employee - Senior Programmer in Santa Monica, CA
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Naughty Dog full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Great devs: You can tell these are some of the best of the best they rarely mess up meaning you work less.
    Great people: Most of them are funny, fun to hang around, and make for great friends.
    Great engine: Their engine is incredible to make 3D person games and a lot easier than something like unreal 4.
    Money: I got promoted 3 times during the 4 years I worked there (3 TIMES!) and they really sort you out and can tell who works the most and single them out. Started around 80k a year and went up to around 170 k a year in the end of employment before I got a better offer.

    Cons

    Crunch: A lot of crunch before a game is released, but a higher up said they would sort that out later so it could of changed.
    Management: Not very organized, but that could've changed in the time I left. I don't want to point fingers but one of the higher ups isn't very organized, of course you said you were gonna rehaul the system so it could of changed.

    Advice to Management

    Work on the crunch time before games are released if you haven't already since it's been 1 year or so since i've been there. Also make your qualifications a bit harder for more high paying jobs, I started programming when I was 13 way back and I felt WAY more experienced than people that made double what I made. Especially when it came to code.


  10. Helpful (3)

    "excellent company to work for."

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

    Pros

    Everybody knows what they are talking about. There are no real producers so you get assignments from leads who know what they are doing. The atmosphere is very friendly even during crunch. I could work here forever from what I've experienced so far.

    Cons

    Since there are no producers, there's a lot of back and forth about what's going to happen. But I think that is a part of why naughty dog makes such great products.

    Advice to Management

    Doing good. Last crunch was a bit extreme but you mentioned you are working on trying to spread the schedule more evenly. Thanks.


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