For over 20 years, video game studios have making false promises about their studio culture to woo naive developers to join them. The careers section of every studio has the same predictable corporate speak about how their culture is unique and amazing. Instead of being presented with reality of the low pay, the drudgery and horrible working conditions, you are given a Club Med travel brochure that talks about all the incredibly fun things you can do in your spare time, if you join their studio.
When you finally arrive at the studio of your dreams, you see the cold, hard truth and find out it’s just another sweatshop where you will be working 16 hours a day with perpetual crunch time to make your corpulent CEO and his slimey shareholders rich. You’ll rarely have time to spend doing all those amazing things that they tempted you with. But, you’ll have plenty of time to work as they have lots of PRIDE paraphernalia, swag, free movie tickets, free coffee, junk food and sugar snacks to keep you working around the clock.
The sleazy marketing and HR departments at Blizzard Entertainment are masters of this kind of deception. They are Jedi master bullshit artists.
If you go to Blizzard’s careers website you’ll see a disturbing photograph that appears to be a gang of hell raising rioters gathered around the famous orc statue at Blizzard HQ in Irvine, California. Rumor has it that the orc statue was temporarily replaced with a wax statue of Bill Cosby for the photo shoot.
A casual observer might mistake them for ANTIFA goons or insurrectionists ready to storm the Capitol Building in Washington D.C. It could even be still taken from any of The Purge modern horror/dystopian films. But these aren’t the typical harmless booze guzzling, toga wearing frat boys that you see in the National Lampoon’s: Animal House film; instead you see a band of menacing, sword wielding, smirking hooligans ready to rape, pillage and destroy all that comes in their path.
Not only are white men involved in this shameful spectacle that glorifies violence, it is the truly downtrodden and marginalized in our society — women and minorities. Even when Blizzard screws up they do it with pedal to the metal diversity, inclusion and representation.
And find people they did.
One man wearing sunglasses has a scowl on his face with a clenched fist in the air as if he is about to punch someone. Maybe he’s looking for a Nazi to punch? Perhaps he’s an insecure dev who’s angry at Asmongold or upset at a WoW player who called him out on Twitter? Maybe he’s angry that a trans woman got promoted instead of him? It could be he’s outraged after he just found out that Activision-Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick made $155 million dollars in 2020 while he’s barely surviving living underneath an I-405 freeway overpass? Perhaps, we’ll never know.
Here’s another promotional image of the same photo session with the caption: FIND YOUR PEOPLE. This is clearly a dog-whistle that Blizzard is using to attract violent, misogynist GamerGate incels and Trump voters to join their ranks. For shame!
Some of the women in the promotional photo look equally crazed complete with Red Bull powered Braveheart scowls and swords & boards. Maybe some of them are gamer girl gender fluid nose-ringed LGBTQ activists who just traded Austin Texas for Irvine California and are still angry about the evil GoP politicians they left behind? Or maybe they/her/him/it are furious that a cis-gendered male co-worker used the wrong pronouns? Someday, we’ll learn the horrifying truth.
After this grueling photo session, I wonder if all of the participants were rewarded with an evening of wholesome fun at the infamous travelling Cosby Suite at the Blizzard HQ lounge/harem complete with strippers, hookers, sword swallowers, jugglers, dancing midgets, and a fully stocked bar? I bet the guys over at the Fires of Heaven forums (a 20 year old online living shrine to Alex “Furor Planedefiler” Afrasiabi) are envious of this Blizzard Bacchanalia.
In the recent lawsuit against Activision-Blizzard, the studio was described as having a “frat boy culture” — whatever that means. With the imagery that currently exists on Blizzard’s website, it’s very clear that Blizzard was actively promoting company activities that would lead prospective applicants to believe that part of the Blizzard culture was testosterone fueled, raucous, live action role-playing events with smashing fists, clanging swords and shields and participants uttering Viking battle cries.
The only way Blizzard can move forward from their latest tragedy is to remove all fun and personality from their company except for the annual PRIDE events where they can behave as they please. Employees should come to work early and leave late. They should keep their heads down and only speak when they are spoken to by superiors. All employees should wear gender neutral clothes. Men and women should have segregated workplaces. Alphabet people should have a permanent Inclusion Nexus lounge where they can hang out, compare sex toys, and complain about how persecuted they are. They should eliminate all bathroom breaks and have their employees urinate in jars and defecate in socks just like at Amazon. No more free food or snacks because employees should bring their own food. No more free swag. Absolutely no sick time either. Employees should consider themselves lucky to have a job and should come to work even when they are sick and so they can make amazing video games for Bobby Kotick and his investors.
Finally, the orc statue should be melted down and turned into a statue of civil rights martyr, drug addict, career criminal, misogynist, amateur porn actor George Floyd.
These are all first steps in transforming the toxic culture at Blizzard Entertainment into a progressive and holistic company that values diversity, inclusion, representation, and all other neo-Marxist ideology. We still have much work to do and many miles to travel before the change we really need to see at Blizzard is fully realized.
P.S. An anonymous Blizzard employee just leaked an architect’s rendering of the new open concept workplace for their HQ that will create an ultra egalitarian workplace free from all sexual harassment and devoid of creativity. Kafka would be proud!
I just surfed to their website, I thought you were joking. Unfortunately not..
If they want to get rid of “frat boy culture”, in general rather known as growing up, they seem to plan to hire even more silly kids, instead of adults. This time rather the oppressed and insecure kind with anger and aggression issues.
The young men and women couldn’t deal with their bosses and supposed offenders any other way than by forming a mob. Not through an union or showing civil courage, or by standing together. Funnily the offenders happened to be their best designers.
There is a general lack of professionalism in the video games industry, despite it making oodles of money it is still mostly exploitation of people getting into the business and full of bad managers as well. Afrasiabi and co had no need to ever grow up, most of them apparently are millionaires.
Nope, going woke is going broke, not the right answer to the problems of the company. They did not reform the once great studio, they destroyed it and in the middle to long run their own job as well.
The shame might sting for the old guard of Blizzard, but they are already financially better off than most of their co-workers will ever be, and might even find another job or launch their own studios and might start virtue signalling moderately to heavily, for instance like “Head Cheerleader” (sic) Rob Pardo of Bonfire Studios.