The Various Types of Video Game Testing

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Although to some a job in video game testing seems pretty straight-forward and easy to understand, the fact is that video game testing isn’t a simple or quick job to do. When it comes to game testing, there are many different factors that have to be taken into consideration for each stage of the game design, development, and programming. The job of a game tester is hard work, and it truly requires a lot of technical work, expertise, and a very quick eye with attention to detail that is able to spot game flaws.

If you’re interested in a job in video game testing you should know that there are several different types of testing that you can do. There isn’t just one type of video game tester that is expected to do and know it all. Instead companies usually hire video game testers for specific areas. Below are some of the most common video game testing jobs that you’ll hear of. Remember, if you’re considering a job in the video game industry, video game testing offers a variety of options and paths for you to take.

  1. Localization testers – These testers are needed to make sure that the text, languages, and dialogue in games are translated perfectly. For example a game released in English is often sent to localization testers to ensure proper translation into other languages such as Spanish and Japanese. If you speak more than one language fluently, then this may be an option for you.

  1. Functional testers – Functional testers are needed to play the game from start to end in search of any glitches or bugs that may have occurred during the game programming stage. Functional testers are what you probably think of when you heard the term “video game testers.” These testers generally play a game two or three times over to ensure that they’ve caught all of the bugs and glitches possible. They are responsible for recording these problems, so that patches can be made.

  1. QA testers – QA testers are usually needed at the end stages of game development and programming. They work to ensure that a game runs as required before they are sent out to be sold. This includes testing for game crashes, any flaws in character design that may exist, and others. For example, in a specific game a QA tester will ensure that a specific weapon used gives the right amount of damage, or that a specific character is weak/strong according to game guidelines.

  1. Soak testers – Soak testing is probably the easiest type of game testing, but the fact remains that it is a necessary part of the testing process. Soak testers leave games running at various times in the game such as the title screen. These testers do not play or interact with the game. Instead the game is paused or let is run for a long time period. This is to test for memory leaks as well as rounding errors that may manifest and cause game issues.

  1. Ad-Hoc testers – Ad-hoc testing involves using actual players who have never heard of, played, or have previous knowledge of how the game should work, in order to find bugs and glitches that exist outside of the set game plan.

If you’re looking to become a video game tester, it’s important that you’re aware of the various testing roles. Find the ones that you like best and are most qualified for, and apply yourself today!

Gina Kraft wrote the article for Game Shastra. Gina is a supporter of Game Shastra especially, their Game Programming, game design, and Video Game Testing.

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