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What separates any enthusiastic gamer from a diligent tester is not their passion towards playing video games, but the varied degree of an objective approach both individuals make. Yes, both love gaming and spend a lot of time in pursuing that passion, but a tester looks beyond the obvious and scrutinises every aspect of every game he/she plays and ensures a continuing quest for betterment of the game, in tandem with set milestones.
So a casual gamer is not your game tester, never if you are serious about the fate of the game developed or published by your team.
Nuances Of Testing:
The modern gaming industry has become more erudite and sophisticated over a period of time, and this has been made possible by all those passionate testers, who work tirelessly, to add new dimensions to it. They contribute to the fact why PC or console game testing is a much more serious endeavour.
To unearth as many bugs as possible, testers play the games in different ways while covering every associated aspect in mind on gameplay, performance, UI, environment, character sketch, and sound. Well, the processes/philosophy of testing may vary between the publishers, but the major points, which regulate the domain testing, remain the same.
While there are dedicated companies extending game testing services to the very best and the biggest publishers and developers, testing has now emerged as a full-fledged industry which follows the growth pattern of the information technology domain. In unison, software development and game testing – in addition to several of their other multimedia production and QA counterparts – complement each other to render push to the growth of outsourcing business.
Here we would only talk about games and some of the efficient testing methodologies about the domain of game development!
The Enthralling Process Of QA Testing:
With the advent of new tools and technologies, it has become a lot easier for the companies to streamline their game testing processes. One of the most followed methods of testing is called ‘smoke testing’, where a game is split among various levels and areas which are given to different tester. So, each level is comprehensively tested to scrutinise the element of crashes, stalls, freezes and script blockers.
Smoke testing not only saves a lot of time but also ensures that every important aspect of testing gets covered. If any change is needing immediate attention, a tester can quickly report it to the development team and get it sorted, then and there, without wasting any time.
Another important type of popular testing methodology is called ‘Destructive Testing’ where testers target a particular area in a game and try to micro-fragment it. Well, it is one of the fascinating aspects of testing, but sometimes things become awkward when testers come up with useless or exaggerated bugs, which are related to cosmetic and unnecessary changes only.
Once over with the initial tests, teams move to performance testing of games, where important decisions are taken regarding the crucial stages and sizes of the games. Sometimes even a simple tweaking like dropping or increasing frame rates can be made to achieve the optimum performance rate.
Precise and comprehensive testing is the bedrock of every successful and popular game, and it will continue to be the factor to play its part in bolstering the business and popularity of the overall industry. Some publishers, for the time being, may ignore the fact about how the eventual success or failure of a game title can be regulated by subscribing to adequate testing. But the smart ones will eventually know compelling reasons that say why testing is one of the essential blocks in a puzzle called the success of a game title.
It’s up to the publishers to choose, which category they would like them to be recognised in.
Laxmikant B. Thipse
Founder & CEO
GameCloud Technologies Pvt Ltd