December 8th, 2008 1,439

Requirements in Game Testing

As a game tester you will learn all about the set of guidelines publishers are required to follow in order to properly test a game.  It will benefit you now if you’ve never tested before to learn the terms for these requirements.  Some companies call them Technical Certificate Requirements (TCR).  Others call them a Technical Requirements Checklist (TRC) and some just call them guidelines or a Lot Check.  No matter the name, it’s important that you know the basics of what this consists of.  The problem is these checklists are not released to the public and most times only the developers & publishers of a game will lay eyes on them.  It does help you though as a potential game tester to know these requirements exist.

Many companies develop in house testing procedures.  The guidelines and steps they develop will be shared with you during your game testing training.  Procedures will also vary depending upon the game itself.  The steps involved in testing a PC game will of course be different from a console game.

Regardless of the type of game you will test, the core basics of proper game testing are all the same:
1. Finding and reporting bugs
A game tester must be able to find, analyze and reproduce glitches within a game.  Then using some sort of tracking system that the company has in place the tester will report the bug via that system.  Being able to reproduce a bug is key in this area.  This is the primary duty of every game tester.
2. The review
The developer will review the bug submitted by the tester to determine how it occurred and hopefully fix the issue.
3. Verifying fixes
If the developer advises that a bug found has been fixed, the tester will need to verify this is in fact true.
4. Continuing to check closed bugs
If you’re at all familiar with programming, you will know that a change in code can present problems.  One fix might break something else.  As part of testing a game, you will find that previously closed bugs will need to be tested again to insure this doesn’t occur.

It’s important that you understand that not properly doing your job as a test can cost your employer thousands and thousands of dollars.  If a game is not released on it’s scheduled release date, just think of the potential issues this can cause.  Your managers will really stress the importance of following the guidelines put out there for you as a tester.

There is so much to learn about the game industry.  Game testing is just one small part in a rather large piece of pie.  If you work hard and learn all there is to know about testing and games, you will go further than you could have ever imagined.

Be sure to join my site so I can help you achieve your goals!

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