Gaming News

The Structure of a AAA Publishing Company

I was replying in another thread and thought others who don't have working experience in mega corporations or the games industry might find this interesting. Before I worked in the industry, i couldn't really grasp the scale of these companies.

at these behemoth AAA companies, you have huge departments that are very siloed. I don't know if that term is used much outside of a corporate context, but here it would mean that the teams operate and stand alone. they are self sufficient, and unless one team is serving another (marketing serves development), they would likely not interact or even have their workspace in the same part of the office- they could even be in different buildings on a large campus.

for example, blizzard HQ is not just the three buildings gated at Irvine. they rent most of the office space in the 2 business parks across the street.

Here are the typical departments you'll find at a AAA publisher. Each major department may have many teams within it (different franchises, marketing/pr/community, etc).

Each team will have employees that fulfill the roles I wrote in parentheses. Some roles overlap, but at these mega corporations, they bring in specialized employees for each role, often multiple team members will have the same role or “title” such as senior designer, community manager, Associate Developer, etc.

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Development (artists, programmers, writers, sound design, producers, creative directors),

business intelligence (analytics, market research, etc),

publishing (marketing, community, CRM, global and regional PR, editors, producers, corporate communications team, project managers…..)

QA -quality assurance. game testers, in game and out of game support via phone, email, etc.

Hardware/Server – these are the guys keeping the game servers, web servers, platform servers, etc all running

HR (hiring and recruiting, collegiate scouting and internship team, HR lead and contacts for employees – different HR team for each dev team, as well as other departments. also wellness programs)

Esports (for each franchise, writers editors, community, operations, player relations)

Separate team for your first party platform (battlenet, origin, Xbox live, et)

Web and UX team for online ecosystems of each franchise , brand, web property AND your company's intranet

Events team – handles corporate events, launch and holiday parties, conventions (blizzcon for example).

Mail room – handle deliveries, shipping, and are usually the coolest guys to chill with

Legal – you'll have a fleet of lawyers assigned to different franchises, as well as the brand

Executive team – C level as well as the “guild leaders” of each department, as well as any decision makers up-chain at a holding company (after all blizzard leaders have signed off on anything, it has to then be approved by ATVI legal, marketing, exec teams)

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AND don't forget the many administrative and executive assistants across the corporation

Other services such as custodial, cafeteria, fitness instructors, etc are acquired through third party companies on a contract basis

I hope this is interesting enough for someone. I am happy to answer some questions if they pop up.


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