Blizzard Interviews Chris Glover
As part of a new series of Inside Blizzard interviews, we checked in with Chris Glover, our IT department's Service Engineering Director.
Can you tell us in your own words what your job is?
My job at Blizzard is about helping teams balance risk versus availability and reliability of services. In a nutshell, this means engineering services with failure in mind so that when things do fail, the impact to the overall Blizzard experience is minimized.
Most memorable Blizzard moment:
Chris Metzen’s “Geek Is…” speech at BlizzCon 2010 gave me goosebumps.
What advice would you give people wanting to work at Blizzard?
Find a discipline that you are passionate about: art, testing, technology, design, whatever really speaks to you. Work hard to understand the inner workings of that discipline and never stop pursuing improvement, never be satisfied with the status quo.
How’d you find your way to Blizzard?
Playing Warcraft II multiplayer, I became obsessed with understanding why games would sometimes “lag” and what could be done to improve the player experience. This launched a career in network engineering and live site operations which included stops at a couple of major tech companies and ultimately led me to join the Blizzard family in 2005.
You’ve worked here a really long time. What motivates you?
One of my primary motivators is making sure fans and players never experience frustration with their Blizzard experience. It’s very personal for me when services don’t work as expected for our community. I love seeing things work properly, but watching how happy folks are when we find and resolve complex issues quickly is also deeply satisfying.
What was Blizzard like when you started? How have things changed since you first got here?
Blizzard was an amazing company that made off the charts games but was still learning to become a service provider. Seeing that transformation take place over the past 10 years has been an honor and a pleasure. While the journey is far from over we’re starting to achieve 99.9% availability for services, and multiple games are now updating without downtime for players.
What’s the best part about working at Blizzard?
The people. Working with such amazingly creative and passionate people is an inspiration to challenge oneself to continually develop and strive for greatness.
What project are you proudest of?
The deployment of Blizzard’s IP backbone. Having a dedicated IP backbone enables Blizzard to directly connect players to our content and servers, bypassing congestion over the internet. This project stems from that obsession which started over 20 years ago about delivering a better play experience. I couldn’t be more proud of the team that’s making it a reality today.
What’s your favorite Blizzard game? Favorite non-Blizzard game?
I love anything to do with the Warcraft universe but Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos holds a special place in my heart. Outside of Blizzard games, I’m a huge Civilization nut.