- This topic has 6 replies, 5 voices, and was last updated 18 years, 11 months ago by Anonymous.
December 22, 2004 at 3:16 pm #3671AnonymousInactive
Just a quick news flash…
Kapooki Games are looking for volunteer Gamers to start external testing of one of our upcoming titles…
What do you need to do to get involved I hear you say!
Simple: e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org and make sure to include the following information!! (very very important)
1) Full Name
2) Machine Spec (or specs) you can use to test with – we want high and low – so don’t worry if your machine is 3 years old.
3) Type of internet connection Dial-up OR Broadband.
In order to be accepted as an external tester we will require you to sign and fax back to us a standard NDA.
We expect to begin the external testing program by the second week of January 2005.
So… roll up.. roll up all ye who want to get involved in a game release testing program…
Obviously it goes without saying that any person accepted into the program is expected to keep all information relating to the game strictly confidential until after it is officially released.
December 22, 2004 at 6:56 pm #16759AnonymousInactive
I can never really understand using external volunteer testers to test a game(unless its a MMORPG and only when thats in conjunction with a core team of full-time testers). During development, games have so many bugs and to not use professional test engineers who know what they are looking for and also how to find specific types of bugs doesn’t make any sense to me. It saves money, but I can’t see the quality of the final product being up to a very high standard.
I doubt you are using only volunteer testers, but some companies do and only to the detriment of the final product.
Thats just my opinion on the matter, but best of luck anyway! :)
December 22, 2004 at 8:46 pm #16760AnonymousInactive
Surely the more testing the better, no matter where they come from? And if the company can afford to pay for testers, they would stil benefit from volunteers. Nothing like a blank face rather then a jaded game tester to answer the most important question too – is your game fun to play?
December 23, 2004 at 12:14 pm #16762AnonymousInactive
My thoughts exactly.
More opinions = better
And hopefully less bugs! :)
December 24, 2004 at 12:18 pm #16764AnonymousInactive
i’d echo Paul and Dave’s comments…. there are many studies to show that the fresher, more inexperienced the testers the better the results – after all, your users are unlikely to be experienced software engineers!
Some testing by experienced QA folks is also essential… but knowing Mike and the Kapooki guys (and having done some work with them in the past) I’d imagine this angle is already covered
December 29, 2004 at 5:11 pm #16773AnonymousInactive
Kapooki have been actively testing the current application internally. This process will continue.
We are extending this to include external testers not only from a bug reporting but also usability point of view.
The problem with using ‘exclusively’ internal testing resources is that people become accustomed to bugs and compromises – however if you get all or a majority of your external testers reporting a significant problem – then it challenges any previous assumptions the internal review may have created.
In short it is always wise to test any application with external testers – after all they represent the users – and the users never sit in design meetings or have any political agenda – they just want the application to work.. etc. etc.
But to be perfectly clear Kapooki is and always has conducted internal testing. But experience has tought us that from the external testers we will get an avalance of bugs and or usability issues we never even thought of… and thats the value of external testing – challenging the application against the unexpected.
December 29, 2004 at 11:25 pm #16774AnonymousInactive
I agree with all the points made. Using external testers is good from the point of view that they will see things that internal testers won’t catch due to them being overexposed to the product. However, I’m of the opinion that if a rigorous testing plan is used then nearly all of the important, critical bugs will be found and without the need to risk exposing unfinished games to the outside world, ie: external testers.
Most companies, which have a QA department, have a few differant projects on the go at any one time, with teams working on each project. When I worked for Codemasters we would routinely swap people around to differant projects when we were close to release in order to get the “fresh” view you are referring too. So you would have the core team of say 8 testers and every now and then we would swap 2 of our guys for 2 guys working on something differant and they would basically just play the game without any specific test plans. By that stage all of the critical bugs are found(well, should be found!) and so the fresh testers end up finding some minor bugs which the rest missed. But in my experience there were very few extra bugs found. For example, on one game we had about 4000 bugs logged over PC, PS2 and Xbox coming towards release. I think after the testing with the fresh guys we had about 20-30 extra minor bugs which were legit, and about 100 which were duplicates of already logged bugs.
Its just I would be very protective of “my game”, and would only send it out to volunteer testers as a last resort due to lack of resources. Its an issue that has its pros and cons, like anything else, but in my opinion there are more possible cons than pros and if the same result can be achieved in house, which is entirely possible with the correct amount of resources, then I would never risk sending the game out to people who I don’t know and wouldn’t necessarily thrust, NDA or no! ;)
But again, a lot of companies haven’t got those resources so its risk versus reward! :)
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