NCSOFT Reviews

Updated 2 Aug 2020

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3.0
43%
Recommend to a Friend
38%
Approve of CEO
NCSOFT CEO Songyee Yoon
Songyee Yoon
47 Ratings
Pros
  • "The specific studio I am/was at had an incredible office culture, and a really admirable adherence to keeping a healthy work/life balance(in 10 reviews)

  • "In the golden years, NCsoft (Austin/West) was a great place for opportunity and learning(in 9 reviews)

Cons
  • "No control over the products they support, everything must get approval from HQ (Korea)(in 21 reviews)

  • "This whole experience gave me the impression that HQ is pretty clueless about how to manage their western studios(in 10 reviews)

More Pros and Cons
  1. Helpful (4)

    "Not so much of a has-been, more a never-was."

    4.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Product Manager in Brighton, England
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at NCSOFT

    Pros

    Massively multiplayer online games are arguably the biggest growth sector in gaming - and it's all that NCsoft does. If you want to be in the field, it should in theory be a good place to start. Benefits in the European office are generally good, with bonuses and payrises (although look out in 2009, considering the redundancies in September 2008). Atmosphere is generally good, although management is not brave enough to talk openly about strategy... mostly because they don't have any. Work-life balance is good, and generally people are respected for the work they do - unless you work in some departments, like Customer Service, but then they've all been put of work as well.

    Cons

    The company always seemed rudderless and without any sort of long-term strategy - indeed it was admitted time and again that this was the case. It's been previously stated that NCsoft wants to be an 'entertainment company' but beyond that, little detail was given on exactly how this was going to be achieved or indeed what it even meant. This has led to a muddled development strategy that supposedly is strongest when focusing on 'AAA games', despite the fact that the last two 'AAA games' both failed (Auto Assault and Tabula Rasa). This seems to be an all-or-nothing play, and when the biggest force in the MMO field is already sitting on the biggest pile of cash, seems doomed to fail. Ever heard of 'disruptive' business strategies, NCsoft? Because of the redundancies, there is no now development work at all done in the European office, so don't even bother considering it from that angle. What is left is a reduced publishing operation that will take orders from the US office, and this has been stated publicly.

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  2. Helpful (1)

    "Good work environment, some unnecessary hierarchy."

    3.0
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee 

    I worked at NCSOFT full-time

    Pros

    Fun, young, company, great location (Brighton). Genuine co workers, made some great friends. Nice kitchen, you could leave on time fairly guilt free as home/work life was encouraged. Some ability to progress.

    Cons

    Customer Support often felt isolated and not included to fit in with other departments. Often at the bottom of the pecking order. If you didn't know this when you came in, you sure knew it when you left. Some upper management did try to address this but everyone in Product Support felt it.


  3. "Friendly atmosphere and daily work, bad or absent strategic decisions up"

    3.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    - in Brighton, England
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at NCSOFT

    Pros

    Nice atmosphere, friendly people, great benefits and generous salaries. The company invests in people and gives generous trainings, etc.

    Cons

    Lack of pespective and overall lack of ambition and strategy from the company's upper management.

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  4. "Struggling US operations"

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

    I worked at NCSOFT full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    Strong leadership at headquarters with game titles with loyal user base, awesome company culture and benefits, great people in Korea.

    Cons

    Disappointing performance in the US, resulting in limited upside, instability, and a lot of politics for those who work in the US offices.

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  5. "Working at NCSOFT..."

    2.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Aliso Viejo, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

    I worked at NCSOFT full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    Worked on challenging projects. Great co-workers.

    Cons

    Layoffs were frequent. Some of the projects were too fast paced, which meant working overtime.

  6. Helpful (1)

    "Smart people, but not a friendly work environment at all"

    3.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Project Manager 
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    1) Many talented people work here. 2) NC pays you handsomely when compared to other companies in Korean tech industry (usually as form of incentives) 3) Owner-driven. The leadership decisions are slow but methodical.

    Cons

    1) Near toxic level of work place politics. (Politics is part of life and a decent amount of it is healthy, but this company culture is too full of it) 2) No teamwork at all. (Somewhat related to former point) This company is a jungle in which individuals compete with individuals at every level. You are either an exploiter or the exploited. Exploitation and back-stabbing is so rampant that you may turn into a cynic upon having worked here. (Caveat: This company has more than 2,500 employees. Therefore, my point of view may not be a holistic representation of the company work culture.) 3) You don't have much to do if you are a junior. You are like a freelancer who's outsourced by the exploiters.

  7. Helpful (1)

    "Some good, too much bad"

    3.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Aliso Viejo, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at NCSOFT full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    - I cannot understate that, for the most part, everyone is very friendly. It's a pleasant place to interact with your co-workers. - Flexible work hours as long as you are present during "core" hours. - Subsidized and free snacks! - Benefits were very decent

    Cons

    - No control over the products they support, everything must get approval from HQ (Korea) - Korea out of touch with the Western market (no surprise) and pushes updates that clearly will not hit with Western audiences - Incompetent/uninformed decision making, unwillingness to push back against HQ - Under-qualified people hired/promoted - Getting folks promoted was like pulling teeth - Horrific morale; everyone is just beaten down and has given up - Unrealistic timelines pushed by HQ and supported by production - no attempt at quality updates - All decision making is financially driven; it is a business, after all, but it reached the point where it makes you feel bad if you have a shred of morality in your soul - Some roles are definitely not being paid market rate - Little to no opportunity for growth

  8. "Great people make it a great place to work"

    4.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Manager in Aliso Viejo, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

    I have been working at NCSOFT full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    there is a lot of opportunity if you want it

    Cons

    less energetic than other game industry company

  9. "It was nice experience."

    3.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - UI/User Experience Designer in San Mateo, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at NCSOFT full-time for less than a year

    Pros

    I could work with very specialized people for gaming industry.

    Cons

    The project that I worked was postponed, so finally it was disappeared.

  10. "It was a good time."

    4.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Senior 3D Artist in Aliso Viejo, CA
    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at NCSOFT full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    I just had to model and texture. Handpainting was great. I miss that.

    Cons

    We made an MMO RPG.

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