With the advent of technology and the rise of entertainment industries, the gaming industry as a particular is on a rapid incline too. Experts say that it can reach more than $300 billion by the year 2025 or even earlier. The industry is also seeing innovations like Cloud Gaming, which could pump the industry even more. Various big players like Google, HTC, Amazon are always stepping in to make the industry more innovative and lure more and more players. Google recently announced its cloud gaming service, which allows the player to play from anywhere and on any device capable of using the Internet and having a display. The gaming industry is driving towards new and new innovations every day. However, it does need to understand what the user wants and what they will enjoy.
A company needs to understand what the player wants, what platform they use, and if they are physically equipped enough to be able to play the game they made. This is where Game Testing comes into the scene. This is the thing that helps the company analyze if their product is bug-free, runs smoothly on consumer devices, and the performance is as they wanted it to be. Without this, a game would have numerous bugs, errors, inconsistent performance, bottlenecks, incompatibilities, etc.
It may sound easy, but it requires a lot of work, new techniques, and the aid of software. Some companies like KiwiQA, TestMatick are heading forward to bring new methods and techniques to this department.
Significant Risks Covered While Game Testing
- The game isn’t compelling enough to lure players.
- The fun factor is not there in the game.
- The game has various bugs and issues and generally stops suddenly while running.
- The game is not so unique.
- The game features and the interface is hard to use.
Some Popular Game Testing Techniques
The main objective or the primary aim of game testing, no matter how you perform it, is to find and address each and every error which can occur in the game. Each and every technique will help in finding and eradicating these errors.
Following are the commonly used ways and techniques for game testing:
This testing is used to confirm if the game is abiding by all the specifications or not. Testers in this technique are generally looking for generic problems that may occur inside the game or the UI of the game rather than any error on the user’s end. Issues such as stability issues, audio issues, frame freezing, crashes can be encountered during this type of testing. This does reduce the user-friendliness of the app by a lot. No one wants to play a game with this many potential issues.
This is a technique used to test games in the early stages of development rapidly and efficiently. The first step in this technique is to understand how much testing you need. This will help you in determining what type of testing you need to start with and what other testing can be done without taking up much time.
Generally, this technique is used commercially to generate different test cases and analyse the game in various test cases.
Ad Hoc Testing
Ad Hoc testing is generally called general testing, and it is a less structured way when it comes to testing. It is generally used to test a particular section of the game rather than the whole. This technique is more of an error guessing method rather than finding the error. This technique is the easiest as this technique does not require any documentation whatsoever.
However, there are chances that errors are not completely found out since this testing has no documentation.
Compatibility Testing, as the name suggests, focuses on the compatibility of the software with the user hardware. It also means that if the final product is up to the required standards and requirements or not.
These types of tests ensure that the game is fully compatible with the desired platform, compatible with various different screen sizes, etc.
Different platforms have different requirements, and this technique ensures that the game runs seamlessly between all of them.
Clean Room and Tree Testing
Clean Room Test assists with guaranteeing the consistency and the dependability of the gaming programming. The point of directing this clean room testing is to create a software with next to no errors. On the other side, tree testing is a game testing technique like the usability testing that composes the experiments and settles on the specific selection of tests that are best suited for a given software. The best thing about this kind of testing is that there is no prerequisite to set up any documentation whatsoever.
It is utilized to examine the functionality of all the features of the gaming application. Here experiments are re-checked to understand the working of the former elements of the application. The point is to reevaluate whether the elements of the application turn out great, or confirm whether any updates have sprung up any new bugs or created any break. This is essential to keep up the final result’s quality control and spot bugs at the critical phases in software development. This helps the engineer to understand if any particular stage of the product development is working fine or not. Any particular problematic stage can be redone, thanks to this testing method.
This type of testing is used to understand and analyse the performance of the game under real-time simulations based on the user’s scenario. This testing helps the testing team to understand whether the present game architecture is able to deliver a smooth experience or if they have to change it. Graphic performance, network stability, memory consumption are among the few factors which are tested here.
Technology and innovation go hand in hand. The better the technology, the better will be the innovations happening in the industry. And the game industry is one of the forerunners in carrying this baton of technology and innovation.
However, innovation should not exceed the expectations and the needs of the user. The user should be satisfied and should be able to enjoy the innovation.