ArenaNet Employee Reviews about "work environment"

Updated 6 May 2018

To filter reviews, or .
3.8
69%
Recommend to a Friend
72%
Approve of CEO
ArenaNet Co-Founder & President Mike O'Brien
Mike O'Brien
80 Ratings
Pros
  • "Company provides great medical benefits and a great work life balance(in 31 reviews)

  • "Work environment (cool studio, kitchen with free snacks and drinks)(in 12 reviews)

Cons
  • "mediocre pay, egotistical upper management, conflicting messages on work/life balance(in 17 reviews)

  • "If you are a very experienced tester or just very familiar with Guild Wars 2 you may feel unchallenged by the work(in 8 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

Reviews about "work environment"

Return to all Reviews
  1. Helpful (3)

    "A wonderful culture"

    5.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Character Artist in Bellevue, WA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at ArenaNet full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    Some amazing minds without "shoulder chips" to worry about, ArenaNet is a highly art-centric and creative work environment. There is a no-crunch focus and family friendly mentality that is hard to find elsewhere in the industry.

    Cons

    There are some communication problems within production and a general `go with the flow` attitude about planning that forces a lot of unnecessary re-scoping of even the smallest parts. Nothing unusual or extreme by industry standards but definitely something to consider. We can always be better.

    Continue reading
  2. "ArenaNet is a great place to work"

    4.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee 
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at ArenaNet full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    - Work environment (cool studio, kitchen with free snacks and drinks) - Work-life balance (even in crunch times) - Benefits (great insurance, provides medical, dental, vision, life) - Management trusts their employees to do a great job without micro-management (Trust but verify) - The game is at the core of the company's decision-making structure; everyone is dedicated to making the greatest game possible, all the way to the top of the org - Teams and individuals' opinions and input matter - Everyone loves what they do, and it shows - Flat organizational structure

    Cons

    - Pay is somewhat low compared to industry and locale - Flat organizational structure (also listed as a pro), which can sometimes mean it's hard to move up and new responsibilities don't necessarily mean more pay

    Continue reading

  3. Helpful (18)

    "Good environment, great staff, poor leadership"

    3.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee 
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at ArenaNet full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    Very talented and energetic staff, good health benefits, fun work environment, great product. Good creative collaboration and professional willingness to go the extra mile.

    Cons

    Chronic understaffing, unreasonably ambitious schedules and product development cycles. Steady increase in number and scope of projects, and in quality expectations, but no increase in staff. Low end of salary range compared to industry standard, even with profit sharing. Poor communication between executive management, production, and work teams.

    Continue reading
  4. Helpful (6)

    "Good Fun place to work"

    4.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
     

    I have been working at ArenaNet

    Pros

    Great work environment, everyone is very positive and encouraging. People willingly help each other on projects. The benefits package is decent. Upper management clearly presents its vision and goals. The projects we work on are very interesting.

    Cons

    Organization could be better. People sometimes have trouble adhering to deadlines. Some major projects could be better planned.

  5. "A Vibrant and Positive Family"

    5.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Contractor - Anonymous Contractor in Bellevue, WA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at ArenaNet for less than a year

    Pros

    ArenaNet is a welcoming studio with a focus on providing a great work/life balance. Filled with brilliant and passionate people who in turn inspire you be your best, this company puts a lot of effort and time to promote a positive and collaborative work environment.

    Cons

    Parking is troublesome, but all in all the pros far outweigh the cons.

    Continue reading
  6. Helpful (2)

    "Excellent place to work."

    5.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
     
    Recommends

    I worked at ArenaNet

    Pros

    ArenaNet is a great place to work on a great game. The work environment is fun and casual, and your coworkers are not only skilled, but personable. One of the best jobs I have ever had.

    Cons

    Not much room for promotion, and somewhat low compensation. That said, the pros far outweigh the cons.

  7. Helpful (1)

    "Good to the extent of Awesome"

    3.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Contractor - Software Engineer in Seattle, WA
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at ArenaNet for less than a year

    Pros

    Nice Work Environment, and the services are good too

    Cons

    None at all, that i found in the company

    Continue reading
  8. Helpful (1)

    "An inspiring place to work"

    5.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Intern - 3D Character Artist in Seattle, WA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at ArenaNet for more than a year

    Pros

    A great environment to work in. Beautiful common spaces and skilled and talented team members. Very good work hours, for the artists at least. Leads respect the ideas of their team, even the least experienced ones. Artists given a fairly good amount of autonomy. Work environment that encourages creativity.

    Cons

    Somewhat lower salaries than other similar-sized companies. Working space can be a little crowded. Not a lot of room for advancement in some departments. Too much dependence on outsourcing and temporary employees rather than hiring people full-time.

  9. Helpful (7)

    "Unforgettable experience, incredible coworkers, and overall disappointment in management."

    3.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Contractor - QA - Embed in Bellevue, WA
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

    I worked at ArenaNet for less than a year

    Pros

    -Incredibly talented and dedicated developers -Strong and sustainable product with the Guild Wars franchise -Mostly independent of publisher interference due to fiscal success with products -Very relaxed and comfortable work environment, nice office space, no cubicles, overall pleasing aesthetic -Nice location in the Greater Seattle area -Aggressive release schedule, resulting in stable and consistent work -Company always has a long term plan and release schedule, which is communicated to the employees -Management shares stats and monetary successes or failures of the product to the employees -Community teams are amazing at communicating with the players and overall fan base -Management is not afraid to green light fun, unique, and interesting content that the player base usually enjoys immensely -Overall strong and consistent sense of direction with the current product, which is clearly communicated to the employees and player base -Clear vision and understanding of MMO business models, particularly with monetization strategies

    Cons

    -Conflicting management teams that don’t always communicate effectively horizontally or vertically -Overall attempts to practice agile development, but consistently missing the mark -Frequent mismanagement of resources, especially with programmers -Compensation for all disciplines is not competitive, especially considering the region -Lack of communication between development teams, results in unexpected crunch time, unnecessary work, and down time -Production does not consistently plan for downtime in their estimates and schedules -Code/Content approval can be severely slowed down due to a somewhat chaotic and inconsistent review process -Too many "single points of failure" in staffing for specific disciplines. (i.e. a single network engineer for a very large project) -New teams/projects sometimes fail to take lessons from past post mortems or projects and repeat the same mistakes (i.e. repeating similar build process/work flows that were proved to be inefficient in past development) -Feature team sprint planning retrospectives appear to be ignored or very slow in being acknowledged -Management frequently allows for feature creep to become a problem -Extensive use of “contracted” employees when there is more than enough workload to justify more FTE positions, particularly in QA -Recent removal of the QA department to a third party agency poses a severe threat to studio culture and the pre-existing dynamic of hiring/mentoring from within (Good portion of design and production started as QA)

    Continue reading
  10. Helpful (2)

    "The Real McCoy"

    5.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Programmer in Bellevue, WA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at ArenaNet full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    I didn't know jobs like this existed until I landed at ArenaNet! I've programmed here for nearly 7 years and it continues to be my dream job. -No crunch -Development is driven by passion not production milestones -Incredibly creative, laid-back and friendly work environment -Collaborative bottom-up development -Challenging problems to tackle. -Very flexible with work hours. -Egos are left at the door -Very clean and well organized code base with a strong code standard -Great studio with lots of great amenities(gym, snacks, drinks, game room, etc.) -Good benefits with profit sharing -Did I say no crunch?

    Cons

    Compared to everything I'm grateful for at ArenaNet my complaints feel pretty insignificant. -Very little documentation and heavy reliance on tribal knowledge -High expectations and challenging tasks can lead to "sink or swim" work environment -Requires passion and self-motivation to be successful -Poor on-boarding process -Compensation could be more competitive. -Paid parking

    Continue reading
Found 12 reviews