The Life as a Video Game Tester

A video game testing job from home can be a dream come true for some. In reality though, it can be a lot tougher than people imagine. While I personally love my job, I see a lot of people have really high expectations when starting work as a video game tester and then get disappointed when they realise what the work really involves.

Deadlines, Deadlines and More Deadlines

When video gaming companies plan to release a new game, they have to meticulously organise every step of the way. There are many processes of game testing, QA testing, bug testing and general testing. That’s a lot of testing! And if one falls behind, then it creates a knock-on effect and can have devastating consequences to the planned release date.

Gaming companies will do everything they can to ensure that their release date doesn’t get pushed back. Disappointing customers is the last thing they want to do. Have you ever been really excited about something happening and then finding out that it’s delayed or cancelled? Well, that’s exactly how it can feel for millions of people waiting for a major game release.

My Experiences as a Game Tester

I’ve been working within the industry for 3 years now. And I’ve had a lot of first-hand experience dealing with people at the entry-level of the industry. After my first year working as a game tester, I have been teamed up with the new recruits to help them get to grips with the job. This means I have worked with over 30 of the new recruits at CC GameTesters and have experienced applicants with a very wide range of emotions/opinions on the job itself.

A lot of candidates tend to be disappointed. They have the expectation of just being able to leisurely play any and every game they want to play. This isn’t really the case. As mentioned earlier, we have very specific deadlines set. This can sometimes result in having to stay up until the late night / early mornings just to ensure that you complete your deadline.

We sometimes have to spend hours/days on just one level / one section of the map (depending on what sort of game we are testing). I believe the longest I spent on a specific task was around 3 days. I had to keep on jumping to different worlds on a game (I can’t mention the game due to the non-disclosure agreement). But I literally spent 3 days doing the same chain of events over and over again just to recreate a minor bug. And once I had finally managed to do it, I was able to report it and move on.

Game glitches
Here’s a good example of a glitch.

Besides glitches, we also need to be very focused. Even something as simple as a spelling error is very important to pick up. Gaming companies have a reputation to uphold. And they consider it very important to ensure that simple and silly errors are avoided at all times.