How to become a video game QA tester
The video game industry is growing at a breakneck pace. Games are becoming more popular, technically complex, and brighter. More and more companies are looking for professional testers because they help control development quality, check for failures, and ensure that users can play the game. Testing a game is an integral part of its development. If you like to play video games and are just wondering how to become a QA game tester, you can find the answers in our article.
Statista estimated that the value of the games in 2021 was $138 billion. The Entertainment Software Association has compiled statistics on the popularity of video games in America. We see that people began to pay more attention to games during the pandemic. About 227 million Americans play computer games. 74% of parents play with their children at least once a week. Therefore, it is difficult to overestimate the field of video games now, but what do you need and how to get into QA game testing?
Let’s figure it out.
What are the primary functions of game testers?
Wondering how to become a video game QA tester can create some myths. Maybe you expect only to play games 24/7, but here we will disappoint you. Yes, you definitely should play games that need to be tested.
But you have to go through the same part of the game many times to profoundly try everything in this area for its further correct work. In addition, you will need to test other game features, such as:
Includes testing the correct operation of the game mechanics, saving and restoring progress in the game. All the functions in the game must work adequately (buttons, adjust volume, color, brightness, turn the game on and off, etc.). The laws of physics in the game should also be correct (for example, if a book falls from the hands of the character, it must fly down, not up).
The game’s operation must be predictable and stable. The game should run quickly and smoothly on various devices, following all the prescribed functions.
Localization is essential for the correct language translation and displays for different regions and countries.
QA specialists must test the compatibility between different game versions on various devices.
It is also a crucial stage. Users’ personal and payment data must be secure, and no third side may have access to it.
Interface and voice acting testing.
It is important to test sound, images, colors, etc., on various computers, monitors, and audio systems. Also, check everything on tablets and different types and brands of mobile devices.
Documentation and bug reports.
During the work process, the tester must record all detected errors in the company’s bug tracking systems, keep documentation and send bug reports to developers. It is essential to give a detailed description of the error so that the developer can easily find it.
Of course, all these testing options can be divided between several specialists, depending on the company you work with. But if you are really searching for a way how to become a video game QA tester, you should at least understand the work specifics.
What do you need to become a video game tester?
You do not usually need higher education for the QA profession, but specialized courses and training are important. The better your qualifications (QA education, video game design, computer animation, or related jobs) are more likely to become well-paid professionals.
Knowledge of technical and game terminology.
You will need to write bug reports, and it is essential to explain the bugs in concise but clear language to the developer. Also, keep in mind some qa bug tracking software that may be helpful for a beginner.
Passion about games.
You need to understand the game world and its features. Without such experience, it will be challenging to cope with this area.
QA experience will be a huge advantage.
If you have already worked as a tester, you understand the nuances of this area and are more likely to find a good project. If you have no experience, show your testing basics knowledge and readiness to work hard.
CV with your job experience.
It is essential to share your work experience with your employer. Make a good resume, enter all the important and relevant courses you learned, show work examples, and write your strengths, which the QA requires. Are you new and don’t have any work cases? Write a cover letter, tell about your passion and experience as a game player, your studies, what you can bring to this project, and why you want to start a career in this field.
In general, the requirements for the game tester may vary depending on the company you want to get to. However, it is necessary to remember that you should always learn new information and be aware of all the news in this area. In this case, your question about how to do great game QA will have many suitable answers.
How to get into video game QA and what choices you can have
Offering your gaming tester services, you can work in various fields. For example:
- Game testing for consoles and PCs.
- Mobile game testing.
- Testing online games (for example for casinos)
- Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR) Testing.
The work can be as a project, permanent occupancy, or freelance. Usually, video game testers work as a freelancer or on a project. Here you have some pros because you can have several projects and work from different parts of the world. There are also disadvantages because, in this case, the company is unlikely to pay for your insurance, taxes, and other expenses that are provided for permanent employees.
How to do great game QA and have a good salary in 2022
According to Glassdoor, the average salary of a video game tester can be $13 per hour in the United States, where a beginner can earn $10 an hour and a professional $18 an hour. Of course, these figures may vary depending on the company’s size and the country, but you can see the approximate ratings.
I hope you got the answer to how to become a video game QA tester. The threshold for joining this profession is not very high, although there is increased competition. This area can give you a head start on good career development. If you are attentive to detail, have an analytical mind, are persistent and passionate about games, try your hand at testing. Game testing is an influential profession because it is the tester who makes the game work smoothly and provides pleasure to the gamers.
Yuriy Denisyuk is Game Production Lead at Pingle Studio. He’s responsible for
successfully managing the Game Production pipeline. Yuriy is this lucky
person who plays the best games for work in order to keep up with trends
and creating new ones. He likes writing, reading Manga, fantasy and
professional literature in his free time.