Blizzard Interviews Ted Park
As part of a series of Inside Blizzard interviews, we checked in with Ted Park, our Lead Character Artist for Heroes of the Storm.
What’s your current role?
I am currently a Lead Character Artist for Heroes of the Storm specializing in texture creation and texture approval work for all our Heroes, skins, and their color variations.
What advice would you give people who want to work at Blizzard?
Be passionate about wanting to work here and do the legwork to get in, whether it’s through schooling or gaining industry experience in your field with other industry jobs. Our jobs, fun as they are, are still work, and passion is what will keep you going. Not everyone that works here is a pro playing our games, but I would venture to say that the vast majority enjoy playing some, if not all, of our games after they’ve been released.
How’d you find your way here?
I randomly made it into the original StarCraft beta at the end of 1997 and created several fansites for the game covering community news, strategies, build orders, and so on. My work caught the eye of the Web Team at Blizzard and I helped create the official StarCraft strategy guide website before being hired as a web designer for the company.
You’ve worked at the company for 15+ years. What motivates you?
I’ve been a huge fan of all Blizzard games since Warcraft: Orcs and Humans, and that passion has kept me motivated over the years. It’s been a real pleasure developing from a diehard fan into an actual game developer for the company. At this point in my career, the best part of my job is seeing a new Blizzard game being released and jumping in with the community as it goes live to the world.
What’s your most memorable Blizzard moment?
My most memorable moment with Blizzard was going to South Korea with the development team for the long-awaited announcement of StarCraft II. It was the game that I dreamed of working on from the moment I started with Blizzard, and getting to see it announced to the world in that setting was incredible.
What was the company like when you started? How have things changed since you first got here?
It was a much smaller world back then. While I miss some of the smaller dev team moments, It’s been incredible to see the growth of the company over the years. Watching the global reach of our games has been mind-blowing. We’ve hired many masters of their fields over the years, and being able to collaborate with even a fraction of them has been a real treat.
What’s the best part about working at Blizzard?
I would say it’s the shared passion for the projects that we work on. While all opinions may not line up from person to person, everyone shares a real drive to make the best games possible. That drive is what has fueled me over the years.
What project are you the most proud of?
While I love all our universes, StarCraft II is the one that I’m most proud of. What started as a simple sequel developed into a massive trilogy project that has spanned nearly 10 years of development, and I’m honored to have been a part of it.
Any tales of company lore?
Oh the stories that I could tell… I guess one secret I can share is that our company has moved from building to building over the years and my dev team has moved around on campus several times. Almost every time it has happened, we’ve left little treasures above the ceiling tiles – from posters, to promotional standees, to sentimental items at that time. If you ever happen to move into a building Blizzard previously occupied, you may find something special above you!
What’s your favorite Blizzard game? Favorite non-Blizzard game?
This is like asking which child is your favorite. If I have to choose just one, I would say Warcraft II. With its IPX networking paired with an old program called Kali, it was my first online game. Having real human allies, opponents, and rivals changed the way I saw computer games. I wouldn’t have it any other way. My favorite non-Blizzard game is the original X-COM. It was the first game I ever beat without taking a single break because it was so captivating (and several of my college roommates did the same).
Who’s your favorite Blizzard hero?
Arthas. Even during game development, seeing his story take its twists and turns was genuinely moving for me.
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