Gaming industry has gained tremendous growth and popularity with the evolution of new generation computers and consoles, being video games a favorite hobby of many. With an increased popularity, complexity also continues to increase. The need for detail-oriented and dedicated testers is growing at a fast pace. Out of all the jobs in the gaming industry, video games testing might be the one that gamers around the world dream about.
Of course, game developers and studios may lose the profits by releasing a game which is full of errors or flaws and thus, they hire gaming enthusiasts so as to test their products beforehand. With this, people who are engrossed in playing video games get an opportunity to make money out of something they love doing.
Like any other testing activities, video game testing plays an important role in the development of a video game. Testing process begins while the game is still in the development phase and once it gets finished, the game testers make the final end-to-end testing to ensure that the gamers get a good experience out of it. Like software testers, video game testers perform the testing to find errors, bugs and other issues that could frustrate the end users if not fixed.
One must keep in mind the fact that video game testing is not as easy as it sounds. It is a complex job and requires a structural and disciplined approach to 'video game' testing. A good game tester needs to have a good eye for detail, critical thinking and the ability to remain focused.
Tips on becoming a video game tester:
1. Be Skillful: The developers need a tester who is talented as well as passionate about gaming. One needs to be familiarized with the latest trends and terminologies related to gaming and social media network can be a great help in this case. You should play the kind of games you like so as to be an expert in a particular genre. You might already be an expert at certain genres, still you must give a shot to the new ones too.
2. Go for Technical Training: Though for entry-level game testing positions, one does not require a college degree. But still one can opt for a career option in computer programming, software development or graphic design. Well-rounded job applicants will definitely make a better career in the gaming industry.
3. Gain Technical Expertise: One needs to learn the tactics required to write a bug report. More experience can be gained through participation in beta testing of games and interning at gaming companies which will further add to your resume.
4. Computer/Game Skills: Basic knowledge of computer programming, previous experience with games and fundamental understanding of its hardware components are some of the requirements to be skilled in this area. For being successful, enhance your video game skills, learn about various genres like puzzle games, arcades, multiplayer games, shooting games, online games, mobile games, console games etc. If you keep yourself up-to-date with the latest gaming trends, this will help you in this career.
5. Communication Skills: Here both written and verbal communication skills play an important role. A good video game tester constantly communicates with the development team and also the fellow testers to keep them updated about the issues and bugs he/she finds. So the bugs need to be documented precisely and concisely in the bug tracking tool so that these can be explained to the development team if required.
6. Soft Skills: A good tester is always a team player with a positive attitude. Getting along with your co-workers is always an added advantage. Testing can often be tedious and extremely frustrating at times so keeping yourself calm and composed is all you need.
7. Keeping a Good Eye to Details: A good tester needs to be very painstaking and must have an attentive span. This job is not for you if you get bored after playing it for a while. For being successful in this area, find new video games and beta test them. Sometimes the game studios often release beta versions of their upcoming games so as to get the feedback of the users so you can use them to sharpen your testing skills.
8. A Good Bug Hunter: A good tester has the ability to detect the bugs, finds reliable ways to reproduce them easily and keeps the documentation short and precise so that the bugs can be easily replicated and fixed by the development team. To become successful, beta release games can be used to find the bugs and make a good bug report. While contacting the game studios with your report, be more detailed and they might offer you a job if they will think that you’re good at it.