Telltale Games Reviews | Glassdoor

Telltale Games Reviews

Updated September 8, 2017
61 reviews

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2.9
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Telltale Games CEO Pete Hawley
Pete Hawley
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61 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • Studio has a lot of extremely hardworking and talented people, great IPs (in 7 reviews)

  • Great benefits - better than some of the bigger companies Ive been at (in 4 reviews)

Cons
  • Salary is lower than average for Bay Area, and bonuses are small (in 7 reviews)

  • The company remains in a state of transition from a small to medium-large studio, with all the growing pains that go with that (in 6 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "Fun and friendly work environment"

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

    I have been working at Telltale Games full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Great benefits, friendly colleagues, awesome product

    Cons

    I wish they offered free lunch, but they do have vending machines with healthy options.


  2. "Turbulent but looking up"

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

    I have been working at Telltale Games (Less than a year)

    Pros

    close knit dev teams. intimate relationship with content

    Cons

    compressed schedules. same-ish content and game styles.

    Advice to Management

    focus on original IP. be more disciplined with content review, edits and workflow. listen to your fans

  3. Helpful (2)

    "Not the place to be - so many better options other than a career starter."

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

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

    Pros

    - hard to get fired
    - unlimited PTO
    - cool IPs
    - get credit on lots of titles

    Cons

    - totally unstable. corrupt people in charge, talented people leave, managers useless, and schedules are unrealistic
    - same embarrassing reviews about tech/performance but no real changes
    - every year they beg us to stay because "it will get better" but the biggest salaries go to the biggest jerks

    Advice to Management

    - care more about being professional and pay attention to who is actually doing good work. stop rewarding the people who don't know how to do their jobs.


  4. Helpful (2)

    "Fantastic Team, Poorly Managed"

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

    I worked at Telltale Games full-time

    Pros

    Passionate and friendly team members, fun projects and IPs to work with, beautiful area and location, open floor plan office.

    Cons

    Employees aren't appreciated. Talent retention is borderline non existent. Salaries are incredibly low compared to other video game companies in the area.


  5. Helpful (5)

    ""This is the Wild West, and you will be a lone ranger in any position you take.""

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

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

    Pros

    Telltale is a company rife with talent -- the people on the ground are some of the smartest and most talented in the industry. This is a great place to get your start, and to learn about the ins and outs of creating compelling game narrative.

    Cons

    The company has a toxic, abusive political environment, and seems to exist in another reality. Management is overbearing and incompetent. Upward progress at mid-level is all but impossible, especially for women. A design ethos of quantity over quality will leave you consistently frustrated, overworked, and - especially for the area - grossly underpaid. Management has no way forward, and operates with no regard for the humanity of their employees. Sexual harassers and abusers run rampant, tyrannical and toxic coworkers are allowed to behave however they like unless they abuse people directly outside HR's open door. The company is a structure-less boondoggle with less money than they claim, and waning popularity due to consistently low quality product. This is the Wild West, and you will be a lone ranger in any position you take.

    Advice to Management

    I advise management to stop intimidating and disregarding people who complain, and instead address this company's many, many problems. Try reaching out to the few veterans you still have; try paying the people who work for you and treating them with dignity and respect. Unless some major changes are made, everyone in the company agrees that the writing is on the wall. Telltale is in desperate need of an overhaul before it collapses from within.


  6. Helpful (5)

    "Amazing creative talent being strangled by our CEO"

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

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

    Pros

    Amazing IPs, fantastic co-workers, fast turnaround time. If you can keep up with the grind and stay afloat, there's a lot of opportunity for creative freedom.

    Cons

    Over-involvement from under-informed executives leads to last-minute changes requiring near constant crunch. The CEO is stretched way too thin and trying to be something he's not. Massively underpaid for the area.

    Advice to Management

    Kevin Bruner's limited vision and constant attempts to codify & standardize "what makes a story" are strangling the life out of the creative process. He's claimed on numerous attempts he was going to stop getting so involved and micromanaging, but this past year has seen some of the worst micromanaging yet. He's not a creative, he's a programmer, and his non-stop campaign to make himself an "integral part of the process" is driving away real creative talent and holding us back from realizing our full potential as a company.


  7. Helpful (2)

    "Great but demanding"

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

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

    Pros

    Studio has a lot of extremely hardworking and talented people, great IPs.

    Cons

    The pace feels so fast that there is little time to reflect or make changes.

  8. Helpful (8)

    "Studio Potential Held Back by Senior Leadership"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Artist in San Rafael, CA
    Current Employee - Senior Artist in San Rafael, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Studio has a lot of extremely hardworking and talented people, great properties, and a cool niche of narrative interactive fiction. Could be a great studio if senior leadership invested in their teams and put more quality into the games.

    Cons

    Senior leadership is disengaged from development teams, doesn't seem to care about the people doing the boots-on-the-ground work. Crunch mode is abusive, especially for QA, cinematic artists, and producers. Expect to be asked for constant weekend and night work in these disciplines. Salary is lower than average for Bay Area, and bonuses are small. Projects are poorly scheduled and tend to be rushed together in last few weeks, although the studio is getting better at this, with an influx of excellent and talented mid-level producers. Facilities are minimalist; the office is a bunch of desks crammed together in big rooms, without much else. You get a sense that leadership doesn't care about the teams very much and is just forcing out as much product as fast as possible.

    Advice to Management

    Invest in your people.


  9. "ceo"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Fairfax, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Fairfax, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

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

    Pros

    I am doing very well here so far

    Cons

    they are going through some growing pains

    Advice to Management

    keep on keeping on


  10. Helpful (2)

    "Good"

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

    I have been working at Telltale Games full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Telltale is filled with a lot of driven people who create high quality work at a very fast pace.

    Cons

    Sometimes the pace feels so fast that there is little time to reflect, or make changes within an IP.

    Understanding raises and bonuses is quite difficult. This can be stressful if your position doesn't feel quite like it pays enough for the area.

    Advice to Management

    The games are feeling a little too much like reskins of the same core. Features that are touted as new gameplay mechanics seem vastly behind the times in relation to the rest of the industry.

    In comparison to other story-driven studios, our techniques are not as innovative as we could afford to be.


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