Over the last couple of years, the gaming industry has witnessed some rapid transformations. This is regardless of whether the game is mobile or PC operated. Given the heavy competition these days, game designers need to be precise with every detail, so the final game is virtually flawless. This places even more burden on testing the game correctly with the proper testing strategies. But how do you even test a game? What are the different processes behind it? We will find all of that and more in the following few sections.
How does game testing work?
As evident from the name, game testing is a method to test a game and it is usually implemented by gaming studios across the globe. Most of these studios use game testing to ensure the final product is flawless and high-quality. Additionally, they also ensure that the game is devoid of minor or major issues and the game content is clean and as per expectations. All of this is done right before the primary version is launched, so the process is foolproof.
The overall game development process also includes multiple facets. For instance, you need to create test cases, collaborate with other testers and engineers in your team, and make sure that all the new features and tweaks are well integrated into the game.
If you have identified issues with the game, your goal would be to ensure that those issues do not repeat following the correct test case. That is why it is crucial to create multiple test cases thereby ensuring that the game is solid and high performing.
As a game developer, you cannot compromise on your game’s quality. You need to ensure that the game passes through a stringent testing protocol even before it is launched on the game store. Most gaming companies prefer to test the game while it is still being developed because this is much more affordable when compared to addressing new bugs after the game is launched.
In the next few sections, we will delve into more details about game development and the role of testing.
Why is it important to test games?
Every time a new game is launched in the market, it is launched with the expectation that the game will be a best seller or will at least thrive for a couple of years. In case you launch a game with existing errors, it will make way for unnecessary criticism. This way the sales of your game will dwindle, and the overall revenue of the game organization will be significantly affected. The benefits of testing a game are manifold. We will go through some of the top advantages.
Assessing the quality
One of the biggest reasons to test a game is because it gives you a chance to identify existing loopholes and address them. This makes way for a well-rounded game with minimal errors.
Improve user experience
Another reason why you should test games is that it enables you to identify those areas that require improvement. You can continue to improve these areas by creating back-to-back test cases that work in your favor.
Helps understand market risks
Another reason we recommend game testing is that it enables game developers to identify the potential market risks in the game. These tests are typically conducted on specific groups of individuals right before the game is on board. The users play the game and send in their feedback which becomes the primary way to weigh out the market and improve the game.
We are currently inundated with multiple automation technologies that are taking the testing segment by storm. Your gaming company can leverage these technologies to make sure that you are left with an accurately tested game. As a tester, you might have to work with automated as well as manual test scenarios for a comprehensive insight into the game.
So, in the simplest terms, getting a game tested ensures that the overall game is built on a solid and glitch-free flow. Given the importance of game testing, you might want outsourced QA testing if you don’t already have testers on board.
Becoming a professional game tester
At this point, avid gamers are probably wondering how convenient it is to become a game tester. We would say it is quite convenient given you follow the right approach. Game testers are always in demand because every game is incomplete without a team of competent testers who make way for an improved user experience. Depending on the gaming company where you apply for the job, you may fit into the role of a play tester or a QA associate/analyst. While the former role will involve checking the experience of the game, the latter role is more focused on improving the overall software testing.
Because this job is extremely competitive you need to be trained and adept with the latest gaming technologies. Additionally, you might want to bear the following pointers in mind:
Play multiple games and try to get familiar with the latest trends in gaming.
If you do not have a technical background, get some technical certification in testing and/or software development.
Look out for internship opportunities from gaming bigwigs and use them to gain technical insight. As part of the job, you will also learn how to create test cases and write bug reports.
Try to understand the production chain behind every game.
Improve your communication and time management abilities.
Try to find more creative ways to improve an existing game and you need to be extremely passionate about gaming.
Now that we are almost at the end of the article you probably understand why testing a game is important before it is deployed to the users. Whether it is a computer game or a mobile game, unless it goes through stringent testing you won’t know how good the game is. Testing the game in production is also an excellent way to identify common issues like pixelation problems and lagging among other errors. If you are a game tester, follow the best practices of game testing for a powerful and well-rounded game. Because we shared some crucial details about testing, we are sure you will have an easy time from here.
Yuriy Denisyuk is Game Production Lead at Pingle Studio. He’s responsible for successfully
managing the Game Production pipeline. Yuriy is this lucky person who plays the best
games for work in order to keep up with trends and create new ones. He likes writing, reading Manga, fantasy and professional literature in his free time.
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