“The management lied to me and refused to help me” an artist explains why he quit this video game giant.

Game News “The management lied to me and refused to help me.” An artist explains why he walked away from this video game giant.

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Developers’ voices are rare in the world of video games. We are not used to reading about how things really work under the studio lights. On X/Twitter, Chris Sayers speaks of his great disillusionment.

“They don’t care about people”

Activision Blizzard has often been criticized on social media or by the specialized press. The antics of Bobby Kotick as well as the revelations of Jason Schreier have regularly put the video game giant in the spotlight. Now that the group has been absorbed by Microsoft, tongues are wagging. Now that the former leader of the company is no longer in charge, some employees dare to speak out about their bad experiences. This is the case of Chris Sayers, a VFX artist who worked at Blizzard on Overwatch 2.

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After thanking the people he worked with on his team, whom he describes as “warm, welcoming, fun, friendly and so talented,” Chris reveals that this was not enough to deal with the stress of having to do “four jobs at once” and facing a management that “made promises it had no intention of keeping,” which led him to walk away. He explains in a series of posts how Blizzard “doesn’t care about people,” in his own words.


It all started in July 2023. Chris Sayers had been working on Overwatch 2 for 6 months in the cosmetics team when Blizzard offered him a managerial position. The young man agreed with the group on the expected services, numerous, and the salary. Everything was formalized quickly, and despite his new tasks (being in charge of 3 people, managing the VFX pipeline outsourced to China, etc.), Chris was proud to move up the ranks. However, trouble began in his first week in his new position. Blizzard wanted to fire one of the team members who was working remotely (to take care of his sick parents, as he specifies), despite Chris’ disagreement. Then came the issue of salary. After several follow-ups, the lead VFX realized that his salary would be less than 50% of that of the other lead VFX at the studio, “to the point that as a Lead, my salary is lower than that of all the people I manage” he explains in a message. The Human Resources’ response will send chills down his spine.

I’m told it’s because I’m in the UK and my salary is based on market value, not on my value” says Chris Sayers. “Why pay you more than necessary? It makes no sense” Blizzard replied. “I realize I’m talking to someone who doesn’t care about people” regrets the young man. The worst is yet to come. Still not seeing a salary increase, the lead VFX threatens to resign from his position. It is through a phone call with the Human Resources department that he is going to be taken aback, since they pretend not to be aware of his promotion. That’s when I filed an official complaint he explains. “The investigation into the formal complaint comes back a few weeks later and, after careful deliberation, decides that HR did nothing wrong and followed all the procedures correctly. So I handed in my resignation about an hour later.” he writes on X/Twitter.

The story could have ended here, but Chris Sayers continues. “The HR then tells me that because of my leadership role, I have acquired knowledge that would put me at a commercial risk if I worked elsewhere. They therefore activate a non-competition clause that prevents me from working ANYWHERE for 3 MONTHS!” he indignantly declares. Before adding: You might be thinking, quite rightly, ‘oh, so it’s about 3 months paid, isn’t it? You can’t prevent someone from working for 3 months without paying them’. INCORRECT that’s exactly what they did, and unfortunately, it’s entirely legal. “I said I couldn’t survive for 3 months without a salary, I have a mortgage and they looked me in the eye and said, ‘well, you probably shouldn’t have signed the contract then’. In a few minutes, my email was blocked, and it was the end of my time at Blizzard” he concludes. Curtain.

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