Emeryville to Austin – Who Gets the Axe?

Well, folks, it turns out the rumors are true: Wargaming is in fact shutting down the Emeryville, California office and relocating to Austin, Texas.

Now, I’m not going to get long winded on the reasons. The reason is simple: money. Wargaming can no longer afford California. It’s that simple. They spent shit tons of money buying out things that amounted to jack shit and now their debt level is off the charts.

So, they’re leaving the valley of the REAL players in the computer tech / gaming world and relocating to Austin. They’ll save a shit ton of money, that’s for sure.

Now, typically when a company moves like this they’ll offer their key present employees their jobs if they wish to relocate. Word around the campfire is that Wargaming isn’t doing that at all, rather they’re making EVERYBODY re-apply for a position. This of course means that MOST of them are NOT going to be going to Austin – they’re going to be going to the unemployment office.

Now, California is an “at will” state, which means that Wargaming doesn’t have to offer them shit. They can just outright fire them all and move on.

So that’s it.

That’s all there is…EXCEPT:

THE WHO GOES / WHO STAYS POLLS!!!

Place your bets (and votes) on who gets shit canned and who stays:

Jay Cohen - General Manager

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Paul Barnett - Director of Community/Streaming/Social

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Brian Jakubson (AKA Meathead Militia) - Resident Douchebag

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Felicia Johnson (AKA NyxWGA) - Customer Service

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Melinda Heilman (AKA Dance210) - Nobody even fucking knows anymore

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Nicholas Moran (AKA The Cheiftain) - Resident bullshit artist/douchebag

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Alex Brewer-Disarufino - Senior PR Manager

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Jake Neri - Head of Player Experience

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Jamie King - Public Relations Manager

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Chris Jung - Monetization Specialist

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Erik Whiteford - Director of Marketing/Communication

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48 Responses

  1. Gomez_Adams says:

    LOL. Well, you certainly know how to make a poll amusing. In the end though, most all of them will be canned. First off, there’s no way Wargaming would foot the bill to relocated them. Secondly, there’s no way the vast majority of them are being paid enough to where they would sell out and relocate to Austin with what would be in all likelihood a massive pay cut.

    I think Wargaming makes a clean sweep here with the possible exception of The Cheiftain. I mean, he does nothing really but post on the forum from time to time. I doubt he’s being paid much of anything at all anyway.

  2. Thing 1 says:

    Thanks! Thought you’d all get a kick out of it. In the end I think you’re right. Most of them will be shit-canned. I think they’ll keep that idiot Nicholas, but I don’t see Meathead making the trip. They’re not going to pay to keep all that bullshit running in California just for his stupid fucking videos.

  3. Insurrectional_Leftist says:

    Maybe, those Moderators will be shit canned, gang raped, fired, and then shot 🙂

    Someone needs to tell Nyx_WGA, that her pizza shop is about to be closed !! Remember her, get out of my pizza shop post if you don’t like how we treat you here if you don’t like it rant on the NA forum ?

    Wonder what Nyx new job will be ?

  4. Thing 1 says:

    Probably waiting tables…

    in a fucking pizza shop. LMMFAO!!!!

  5. Gomez_Adams says:

    Now that’s the funniest thing I’ve seen all year. LMAO!!!

  6. Shadora says:

    LOL. Nice poll.

    Considering how badly NA has done in the past 2 years, I think all of them should be let go and new people put in. But, in reality, WoTs has done badly all over the world and hiring new people will do little to make things any better. The entire game is being run into the ground.

    Paul and Meathead might be offered a part-time remote gig, but I think everyone else will be let go and should be. The Thanksgiving Feast sale pretty much sealed the fate of anyone involved in that mess.

  7. Zeedox says:

    In the military if you weren’t sure of the answer, the instructors told us to always pick “C.” or the “longest answer”.
    It hasn’t failed me yet….

  8. Beornotns says:

    Chieftain and Meathead will probably somehow parlay this into a remote thing, but everyone else will feel the gentle caress of a Silverback cadre hopped up on amyl nitrate, ecstacy and viagra wanting to recreate their favorite hate-fuck scene from Caligula.

  9. Thing 1 says:

    You guys are fucking killing me. LMMFAO!!!

  10. Insurrectional_Leftist says:

    Karma is real, butt kicker for sure! LOL

    I can remember all of those “shills” on the NA that used to tell us, “Meh, NA office is here to stay, it’s not going anywhere etc…” Well, it’s going somewhere allright! The downward spiral to hell ! With a touch of Texas road kill, hot sun, insufferable heat waves, etc. They sure will miss those nice mild San Francisco summers etc. [ That’s for the very few that end up going ] 🙂

  11. landedkiller says:

    Dear captains!

    Not all sailing is smooth and as you may have noticed, we are having some issues with our Public Test currently. We hope you can give us some leeway, as we are in the middle of moving our servers to a new office location, so the fixes can’t be implemented until the beginning of next week.

    On the upside, one of the Public test’s purposes – is to make the bugs and errors known to the development team before the update itself is released, and in this case many of those turned up, so we can deal with them accordingly.

    We apologize if this makes your weekend less exciting than planned and thank you for your understanding.

    Fair seas and following winds to all the captains and see you soon in World of Warships!

    they even confirm the move here on the world of warships forum lol

  12. Thing 1 says:

    Fun fact: That statement is fucking bullshit. Their servers are leased and are not in the building at all.

  13. PrinzEugen85 says:

    Forgive a gorilla not knowing the difference with Meathead.

  14. Thing 1 says:

    Neither does Meathead for that matter.

  15. Gomez_Adams says:

    I’ve never understood why he got into doing all those stupid videos.

    I mean really. They are ridiculous to a point of lunacy. I can only assume he was simply padding his own ego with them.

  16. Icon_Charlie says:

    Quote:
    I’ve never understood why he got into doing all those stupid videos.
    I mean really. They are ridiculous to a point of lunacy. I can only assume he was simply padding his own ego with them.

    Reply:
    He’s the stereotypical “Ugly American” type. Do you really think I would effing hire him in any of my endeavors??? Hell no. This is “ALL” he has. I think he is going to be a statistic of being unemployed in the short future. He will be stuck in meanlingless jobs I think for the rest of his life.

    The internet never forgives and never forgets and now he has been typed cast as a “undesirable”.

    If you have noticed of late many of the WoT, WoW youtubers have either diversified themselves into other games/topics or stopped doing those games all together.

    We all see the righting on the wall. As soon as WoT crashes and burns and only playable in Eastern Europe where it belongs… the better.

    Unfortunately there are too many sheeple that play this game and think that it is an important factor in their lives. You see them all of the time they are…
    (F)or
    (A)nd
    (N)or
    (B)ut
    (O)r
    (Y)et
    (S)o

    But mainly in my eyes they are only “Air Thieves”… nothing more… nothing less…

  17. Gomez_Adams says:

    LOL!

    I have got to remember that one!

  18. Thing 1 says:

    They’ll all fucked. LMAO!!!

    They’re doing this move to get the hell out of high rent and high pay. They might work some deal with the “public” figures like The Chieftain at a fraction of what he was being paid before, but that’s about it.

    Everybody else is getting shit canned…and the raped by a gang of disgruntled gorillas.

  19. Mr_Alex says:

    @Thing1

    You meaning all of them are fired, I wonder if the new people they hire in Texas will be any improvement?

  20. Thing 1 says:

    Nah. They’ll do the same thing: what they’re told to do. It’s over for Wargaming in North America. If they’re still around at all two years from now I’ll, be surprised.

  21. Shadora says:

    Take a look at the website for WG jobs.

    Job Openings for North America

    Chicago, USA:

    – Associate Publishing Producer

    Seattle, USA

    – Executive Producer, Live Operations

    Austin, USA

    – Regional Publishing Director
    – Social Broadcast Manager
    – Business Analytics
    – Monetization Specialist
    – Customer Support Representative (Spanish/Portuguese)
    – Customer Support Representative (English)
    – Social Media Manager
    – Community Manager
    – Associate Publishing Producer (World of Warplanes)
    – Content Manager
    – Regional Product Marketing Manager
    – BI Game Analyst

    Edited for formatting and content by Thing 1

  22. Shadora says:

    Sorry, I copied and pasted a longer list than I wanted, Look at the bottom of the list for Austin.

  23. Thing 1 says:

    I’ll categorize it and condense it.

  24. Thing 1 says:

    That tells us all we need to know.

    The lions share of jobs on offer are in Belarus and Cyprus. It’s clear that they are cutting the ENTIRE North American team loose, and keeping only a skeleton crew in Austin to manage the day to day operations and running the entire show from home.

    Everybody else is gone…exactly as I said.

  25. Gomez_Adams says:

    I agree completely. They are all going to get the ax. I’m willing to bet they already have all of those positions filled in Austin with people making far less money, they’re just putting those ads in and letting the California employees apply for them for appearances only.

    None of them have a chance at actually being rehired for Austin.

  26. Zeedox says:

    One CSR per server. That speaks volumes.

  27. Gomez_Adams says:

    Yes it does, doesn’t it?

  28. Mr_Alex says:

    @Thing1, Gomez

    Looks like Thing1 is correct, a WOWS moderator by the name of SuperNikoPower is also leaving, looks like you are correct that all the staff from Emeryville in California will not be going to the new WGHQ at Austin, Texas:

    https://forum.worldofwarships.com/topic/144488-lord_zaths-replay-theater-weekly-series/?page=2

  29. Shadora says:

    Thing_1:

    Thank you for condensing that and making it more readable. I think WG wants a fresh start in NA after the disastrous meltdown of the player-base here. They want to cut ties with them because I think the NA team was starting to become an entity so far removed from WG itself.

    They failed to bring in new players and failed to keep them from leaving. By looking at what jobs they offer you can tell a lot about what they do behind the scenes to attract and keep players. They have a lot of analytical things going on, but I believe their problem could be resolved very easy if they just listened to what players wanted and stopped focusing on how they are going to shove what they want you to do down your throat.

    You could eliminate the need for all of those positions by just doing what other companies which make money have already done. Listen to the players. it really is that simple. Why bother hiring all of those people if you are not going to make new maps, or fix RNG and MM? I mean, it’s pointless.

    No one asked for HD maps. They wanted more maps and they were totally ignored.

    The NA team failed miserably and should all be canned, but the icing on the cake was the Black Friday Feast sale. As you can see in the list, the monetization guy is gone. I think he is the rocket scientist who dreamed that up. If I owned WG and I saw that sale posted, I would call the NA office and do a tele meeting and throw a lump of crap at the camera into his face from Cyprus and tell him to get his things, he’s gone.

    I do not dislike Paul or Meathead (don’t hate me). I admit I find them entertaining and I love Paul for pushing the microphone into the face of a dev at a player meet who keep moving it further away and you couldn’t hear him. It was great, the dev just couldn’t understand how a microphone works.

  30. Thing 1 says:

    No problem.

    I don’t think it’s just them they want to cut ties with. They’ve lost a shitload of money here in North America. They’ve been paying these people a lot of money for 6 years running and all they’ve done is run it into the dirt.

    They’re going to run it themselves from Belarus, they just need a skeleton crew in Austin to push the buttons so to speak.

    That’s what they’re doing. They’ve just flat out given up on North America. For now at least.

  31. Insurrectional_Leftist says:

    My god, those comments in the WoWs link way up above, seriously. Those are a bloody sack of BS propaganda lies posted if I have ever saw any! What a bunch in-house office lies. They must have had the home office cut that shit up off the cuff, themselves to keep the fan bois believing the illusions of WG’s paved roads of GOLD, that the sun never sets on LOL 🙂 Wargaming where the lies never stop

  32. Thing 1 says:

    It too has been deleted.

  33. GeoMonster says:

    Shadora:

    WG will never listen to the NA customer base. In my opinion, if they fix the items that many say are broken, (RNG, MM, etc) then they will lose control over the matches. If RNG was fair, and if MM was fair, then it would be very obvious that something is amiss under the covers when very little changes. That is why they won’t balance MM teams … because IF the teams were balanced and massive losing streaks still occurred, then something else is at fault and causing an imbalance. MM can be manipulated to give certain results, RNG can be manipulated, specific tank parameters can be globally manipulated, etc. Once you balance MM, then it would become obvious (except to the shills and fanbois) that the matches are not fair and random.

    I still enjoy playing, but the frustration level is finally getting to me. Something is going on under the covers and it is helping to cause a reduction of players due to the frustration. You can hear it in almost every match. I feel that statistics cannot explain all of the outcomes experienced.

    HD maps are probably a good thing. Let’s get the graphics up to date and THEN create new maps based on the new graphics engine. If we don’t see a lot of new maps, the HD maps would not have been a good thing. But it is a logical progression.

    Fix RNG?? Ha … I believe that RNG can be and is manipulated.

    Fix MM??? See above. If they did then other items will come to light and not make them look good.

    Re: NA Team. Just how much say do you think that the NA team had in the operations of WOT? If they did send feedback to the home office, do you really think that it would be acted upon? Maybe their hands were tied … but regardless of the hand-tieing what has happened over the past year is totally inexcusable.

  34. Gomez_Adams says:

    Between the ridiculous levels of RNG, the completely uncontrolled cheats and illegal mods in use, the complete ineptitude of the team damage and abuse (both verbal and physics wise) have simply left the game in an untenable position.

    Wargaming never cared because in the beginning they were making money. Now that they’re losing money, they still don’t care because they simply can’t afford to.

    They built the perfect storm with their “we know everything and you average rank and file players no nothing” attitude.

    Now, that storm is swallowing them up whole. We said this was going to happen years ago. Every single thing we said would happen has either already happened or is presently in the process of happening.

    What I find absolutely hysterical is you still have those same few shills holding on for dear life, saying it’s all just “smart business decisions” and “common sense strategy” when just months ago they were all saying “that will never happen” and “they’re making billions, why should they care” to the exact same things.

    It’s laughable how foolish and ridiculous they all look now. The only thing that makes it actually sad is that they’re too stupid to see it.

  35. landedkiller says:

    hmm content manager that means youtube as well so Meatheadmilitia must be getting the axe as well. When you look on glassdoor the reviews speak for a workplace that is polarized and expects you to handle multiple tasks at once. There is a treasure trove of reviews that one could make an article out of if they wanted to. I bet we will see a godbye video at the end of feburary or in the middle of March. We will have to see how wg handles the fallout. who knows maybe we will see another former wg employee do an interview with THing 1 time will tell. This response I think speaks volumes there is a line that says “our goal is not to take your money and run”.
    Sub_Octavian

    Master Chief Petty Officer
    Sub_Octavian
    Developers
    1,171
    208 posts

    Report post #112

    Posted 8 hours ago

    Hey everyone.

    Coming across this topic obviously caused by my answer (put out of the context a bit, as it was live-stream), I feel I need to comment here and take the flak if needed. But I prefer to be flak’ed than to be unclear.

    1. I personally appreciate NA players a lot. I was lucky to visit US players gatherings twice, dedicate much time to forum and Reddit, and I should say (and I did say it publicly, and internally) that you guys are super awesome and hearty, and it’s a pleasure to work on the game for you. And yes, I envy Pigeon, Radar and Boyarsky a bit for having your entertaining and engagement as the primary job responsibility 🙂

    2. WoWS team truly appreciates rich history of USN, as it brought us a primary tech tree in the game, huge part of lore and content, and deep reserve for making new exciting stuff. Hence, lots of ships of all kinds, Missouri as a 1st FXP ship, Black and Flint as RB rewards, some of our offline/social projects and upcoming USN cruisers split. And for the most part, we even don’t need to build paperships, there are so many real ones. Whew!

    3. WoWS team truly appreciates both kinds of players: who support us with purchases and those who support us with their time, be it super-hardcore players, wiki editors or super-testers. And those who combine of course. I would like to note that the game is not about code and 3d models, it’s first of all about people, and there is not personal entitlement or “one group is the most important” here. Yes, paying players allow the game to pay the bills and invest in future development. But at the same time, free players and in f2p model constitute a bulk of audience, hence the game is considered popular, played, and match maker can adequately work. At the same time, without brave ST, who spend a lot of their time helping us to improve the quality – which sometimes we truly fail to do, but not because of ST – are absolutely important as well. You got the idea? The fact that you’re buying premium ship is extremely important to sustain the game, and still, you’re not the only one who is contributing, and you don’t “own” the game. It belongs with the whole playerbase, and devs are those who make the call. Of course the feedback of a guy who spent $1000 or played 10 000 battles (or both) is super valuable. But so is the satisfaction of ST who spends more than half of potential playtime testing stuff, and feedback of newcomer (because it’s fresh perspective we all find hard to have, after so many years).

    4. I do think that the drama around Alabama was unnecessary, hence the joke. I’m a Russian, so you may say I don’t understand the importance of having some USN ships in the game, but I did my homework and honestly, I do understand and respect that desire. However, we were never planning to release one cool USN ship for ST exclusively and then stop delivering. We merely wanted to say thanks to ST (not all of them, as this is the highest ST reward for those who are really contributing A LOT) and keep some exclusivity for them. On the other hand I acknowledge that our comms and timing (AFAIK, the inventory of high-tier US premiums was not diverse at that moment) was not perfect. In the end, I’m not blaming anyone, but cannot really blame myself for this situation. It was unfortunate, but no bad intentions were involved from any party. To be honest, I do think we can safely laugh and joke about it now, as lessons were learned, and time has passed (although, on related topic, I still occasionally cry when players blame us for reworking top USN BBs citadels).

    5. As for Massachusetts release, please realize that while we’re a business, our goal is not to squeeze money ASAP and escape. The project is too valuable and big, so it revolves around long-term strategy. And in this strategy, you keep people entertained, engaged and happy, you keep a decent display in the shop, but you’re not throwing everything you can sell at playerbase hysterically and immediately. Yes, she can potentially be released as a mere clone and earn us money. And she is not likely to ruin the game or something. But right now there is stable line of premiums, and we have no reason to speed things up. Her being a sister-ship does not help either – we may release her like that, but maybe we will be able to make her somewhat different – who knows? There is NO rush here. We appreciate the enthusiasm, but it’s not the time, and we’re not changing our mind this time, as other options (to find a better time/cause or find a way to do her) are more beneficial for everybody in the end.

    I hope I was able to explain myself this time. I apologize for any possible misunderstanding before, and wish you good week end!

    funny wording in this response.

  36. Thing 1 says:

    They have no reason to speed things up? Then why are they hurling more premiums into the game faster than they are regular ships? From what Alex has been posting, they’re even taking hulls from regular ships, removing them from the tech tree of some ships and making them premiums as well.

    Add all the fucking boxes and gambling bullshit and that makes him a complete liar. They’ve hurled more money grab into every game than you can shake a fucking stick at.

    And by the way, we already have those employee reviews in multiple stories throughout the site.

  37. Mr_Alex says:

    @Thing1

    The following ships had their stock hulls removed:

    IJN

    T5 Kongo her 1914 A Hull is gone, rumours are it will be sold as a T4 premium ship under a different name
    T6 Fuso her 1917 A Hull is also gone, rumours her A Hull will be sold as T5 Yamashiro
    T7 Nagato her 1930s A Hull is also gone, her stock Hull is now the T6 premium ship Mutsu
    T8 Amagi her 1930s A Hull is also gone, her stock Hull is now the T7 Ashitaka
    T10 Yamato her stock A Hull became the T9 Musashi which you can get for 750k exp

    USN

    T6 New Mexico her 1918 A Hull is gone, rumours are it will be sold under a different name as a t5 premium ship
    T7 Colorado her 1920s A Hull is gone, rumors are it will be sold as the West Virginia or Maryland as a T6 premium ship

    That’s how much stock hulls has been removed

  38. landedkiller says:

    What I mean is that they are lying again and that their phrasing was ironic, because that is what they are going to do is leave high and dry. He is a complete liar the fact that more prem ships are being put into the game shows they are rushing to make money. They are making up tanks as well all the time just for money. Just slap a camo on and done. Can’t believe people are stupid enough to continue giving them money.

  39. Thing 1 says:

    @ Alex – yeah man. That’s what I thought you had been saying.

    @ Killer – OK, we’re saying the same thing just in different way. I fucked up and didn’t get what you were saying. We’re on the same page man.

  40. Shadora says:

    GeoMonster:

    I think you are right about why they won’t make changes to all of those items. I think the game is balanced behind the scenes with MM, RNG and the players current and overall WR. The game is a charade IMO. It’s all smoke and mirrors.

    I also think the HD maps were going to be WoT2, but the game dropped too quickly in the past two years that they had to put it out as a WOT upgrade because they couldn’t risk spending all of the money on a marketing campaign for WOT2 and the full development of the UI and other various programming involved. The new maps project started three years ago, just as AW was coming out with supposedly better graphics and they probably figured they needed an upgrade to counter it, but AW dropped off the face of the earth due to poor design and it had nothing new to offer that didn’t already exist to pull people already playing the other two tank games away.

    In regards to WOWS:

    I believe the frequency of premium ship sales are being forced on the management team because WG is telling them to generate revenue being the company is in trouble. WoTs premium tanks sales have accelerated as well and WG needs to generate revenue out of WOWS because the company is shrinking. It literally is sink or swim time for WOWS.

    WG has no other cash cows on the horizon. They are being put into a corner because the revenue from WoTs is falling every year, the bank they bought is losing shareholder value and draining resources on paper and other games they spent a lot of money on are not returning the investment.

    Even if they had a good idea they may not have the resources to follow through on it. They created this problem for themselves however due to ignoring their customer’s demands for years. They still may not have any idea why they are in this position. They operate in a vacuum, completely removed from any inkling of what players want and any means to bring them what they want.

    A book could be written about this company as a lesson on how to not run a company.

  41. Mr_Alex says:

    @Shadora

    When will your article on where Wargaming will head in its current situation be up?

  42. SPACEDUDE71 says:

    Do we know who made it to texas and who didnt.

  43. Thing 1 says:

    So far, nobody.

    There are three and a half weeks left though before they shut down Emeryville for good. We do know that 117 are gone. That is all but 6. So, at best, only 6 people will be making the move.

    I think those 6 are not going to make it either. Not all of them anyway. We’ll know in less than a month.

  44. Beornotns says:

    They will need to keep 1 person; whoever has the keys to the old place to turn them in. And then that person can be let go.

    I don’t see HOW they could make a 100% turn-over, but it looks pretty damn close to it.

    ~B

  45. dexatrin82 says:

    lol I know right…. it’s almost as if people at Emryville were doing a bad job or something….

  46. Zeedox says:

    @Beornotns
    100% turn over is almost the same as starting a new company. This one just starts with quite a bit of infrastructure and protocols already in place.

  47. Thing 1 says:

    Turnover assumes they’re being replaced.

    They’re not.

    This is not a move. This is a consolidation. That means liquidation. They’re not keeping anybody but maybe a few key personel (if there is such a thing at that half-assed company).

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